1. Beethovenhaus Baden, Entrance Ticket
There is evidence of Beethoven having visited Baden 17 times. Close to Vienna the city of Baden provided a cool climate and reasonable prices. It was a noble spa town.: In 1803, Kaiser Franz II decided to make the town his summer seat. The city had two facets: in the historic centre, its character was shaped by theatres, coffee houses, gambling salons and an unending array of new palaces erected by the city’s nobility and wealthy citizenry; the city’s outskirts had a rural feel to them – with splendid alleys, promenades, pavilions and vantage points. Baden bei Wien could be reached from Vienna in three hours by stagecoach. Beethoven particularly enjoyed walking in Baden’s surroundings, in the Helenental and in the landscape of the southern Vienna Woods. His stays in Baden provided Beethoven with the opportunity to receive and to meet with friends. His guests included pupils and teachers, publishers, fellow musicians, friends and relatives. When the weather permitted, they went on walks in the surrounding countryside and lunched together; meals were also occasionally served in this house. Beethoven worked on both major and minor pieces during virtually all of his visits to Baden. He composed canons and musical jokes for his friends. Major sections of his ‘Missa solemnis’ and his ‚Eroica‘,‚Pastorale‘ and ninth symphony were written in Baden. The idea of using the ode in the Ninth Symphony’s final movement is first mentioned in a sketchbook dating from 1822. Beethoven wrote the majority of the symphony in 1823. Richard Nikolaus von Coudenhove-Kalergi, founder of the Paneuropean Union, suggested that the fourth movement be made an anthem for Europe. In 1985, the main motif of the fourth movement was accepted as the official European anthem by the EU, albeit as a vocal-free version so as not to give any one language precedence. One famous Baden ‘exhibit’ is admittedly the house itself in which Beethoven lived. Besides that the museum owns a lock of Beethoven’s hair cut off as a keepsake during the visit to Beethoven's deathbed. Another highlight is the grand piano made by the Viennese piano builder Conrad Graf dated on 1818. It belonged to the merchant and local judge Josef Perger. Beethoven was his guest several times during his stays in Baden and played this piano. Thanks to sponsors and donators the historic fortepiano in the Beethovenhaus Baden was made playable again by the time of the anniversary year Beethoven 2020. The aim was to restore the grand piano while conserving the parts that are still original, and attain a playability that comes as close as possible to the original sound. It is used for concerts now again. In the hearing laboratory, you can discover the secrets of tones and sounds, and experience what happens when you gradually lose the ability to hear.