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Students in Beethoven: His Life, His Music, and His Era unraveled one of music’s great mysteries, “Who Was Beethoven’s Immortal Beloved?” Tuesday in the Williams Center for the Arts.

Nine students took on the roles of Ludwig van Beethoven (1770-1827), his secretary, and the women who may have been the “Immortal Beloved” addressed in a letter found after his death. As each woman said why she may have been this object of Beethoven’s ultimate affection, related music accompanied her.

“The students will present this as a puzzle,” explained class instructor William Melin, professor of music, before the presentation. “Various scholars over the years have proposed different candidates for who the ‘Immortal Beloved’ might be. We think it’s solved, but not everyone accepts it. The issue will be represented as a mystery, with the most likely solution revealed at the end.”

Beethoven is often regarded as the most important musician in the Western musical tradition. The course is part of a music department series on great composers.

Sponsored by the music department, the event was free and open to the public. Dessert and beverages were provided.

Categorized in: Academic News