Monday, March 1, 2010

The World is Celebrating Chopin’s 200th birthday in 2010

On this day in 1810, a great man was born. Frédéric François Chopin is the name of this great composer or his christen name was Fryderyk Franciszek Chopin. Chopin is considered to be a Polish composer and virtuoso pianist.He was one of the great masters of Romantic music. Chopin was born in the village of Żelazowa Wola, in the Duchy of Warsaw, to a French-expatriate father and Polish mother. He was considered a child-prodigy pianist. At age twenty, on 2 November 1830, he left Warsaw for Austria, intending to go on to Italy. The outbreak of the Polish November Uprising 27 days later, and its subsequent suppression by the Russian Empire, led to his becoming one of many expatriates of the Polish Great Emigration.

In Paris, Chopin made a comfortable living as a composer and piano teacher, while giving few public performances. Though an ardent Polish patriot, in France he used the French versions of his given names, and traveled on a French passport, possibly to avoid having to rely on Imperial Russian documents.

For the greater part of his life Chopin suffered from poor health; he died in Paris in 1849, aged thirty-nine, of pulmonary tuberculosis.
Chopin's compositions were written primarily for the piano as solo instrument. Though technically demanding, they emphasize nuance and expressive depth rather than sheer virtuosity. Chopin invented musical forms such as the instrumental ballade and was responsible for major innovations in the piano sonata and waltz.

Poland celebrates 200th birthday of beloved icon Frederic Chopin

WARSAW, Poland - The stirring strains of Frederic Chopin's music are reverberating across the world as music lovers celebrate the composer's 200th birthday this year - from the chateau of his French lover to Egypt's pyramids and even into space.
But nowhere do celebrations carry the powerful sense of national feeling that they do in Poland, the land of his birth, where his heroic, tragic piano compositions are credited with capturing the essence of the country's soul.
Poland is going all out to display its best "product," as officials bluntly put it, staging bicentennial concerts and other events in and around Warsaw, the city where the composer - known here as Fryderyk Chopin - spent the first half of his life.
"Fryderyk Chopin is a Polish icon," said Andrzej Sulek, director of the Fryderyk Chopin Institute in Warsaw. "In Polish culture, there is no other figure who is as well-known in the world and who represents Polish culture so well."
Perhaps nothing better conveys Chopin's importance - literally - than his heart. It is preserved like a relic in an urn of alcohol in a Warsaw church, encased within a pillar with the Biblical inscription: "For where your treasure is, there will your heart be also."
Just before his death at 39 from what was probably tuberculosis, a coughing and choking Chopin, fearful of being buried alive, asked that his heart be separated from his body and returned to his beloved homeland. His body is buried at the Pere Lachaise cemetery in Paris, where Chopin spent the second half of his life.
Finding it unseemly, Polish authorities have repeatedly rebuffed scientists wanting to run DNA tests on Chopin's heart to explore a suspicion that he actually succumbed to cystic fibrosis, a disease not yet discovered in his day.
Sulek said Poland might one day agree but would rather have the world focus on the genius's life, not his death, during this bicentennial year.
Chopin was born in 1810 at a country estate in Zelazowa Wola, near Warsaw, to a Polish mother and French emigre father. Historical sources suggest two possible dates of birth - either Feb. 22, as noted in church records, or March 1, which was mentioned in letters between him and his mother and is considered the more probable date.
Since no one is sure, Poland is marking both. A series of concerts in Warsaw and Zelazowa Wola will take place over those eight days featuring such world-class musicians as Daniel Barenboim, Evgeny Kissin, Garrick Ohlsson, Martha Argerich and Krystian Zimerman.
Then, a refurbished museum opens in Warsaw on March 1 displaying Chopin's personal letters and musical manuscripts along with a multimedia narration of his life.
Celebrations span the globe, from music-loving Austria to concerts at Cairo's pyramids and across Asia, where his following is huge.
The astronauts who blasted into orbit on the Endeavor space shuttle Feb. 8 carried with them a CD of Chopin's music and a copy of a manuscript of his Prelude Opus 28, No. 7 - gifts from the Polish government.
The Endeavor commander, George Zamka, who has Polish roots, told the Polish news agency PAP ahead of his trip to the International Space Station that listening to Chopin in space would enhance the majesty of the cosmos.
"Chopin is universal," said Mariusz Brymora, a Foreign Ministry official who helped put Chopin's music in space. "We are convinced that Chopin is Poland's best brand, Poland's best product. There is nothing else like him."
In France, Chopin is valued as "the composer who ushered in the age of great French music," according to Adam Zamoyski, historian and author of the new biography "Chopin: Prince of the Romantics."
Chopin's entire musical output, about 15 hours worth all together, will be played by some 60 pianists at the end of February in the central French city of Chateauroux and in Paris in an event entitled "Happy Birthday Mr. Chopin." The program will be filmed and later shown on French television.
And the small chateau in Nohant of Chopin's famous companion for eight years, feminist writer Amandine Aurore Lucile Dupin - best known by her nom de plume George Sand - has been fixed up and will host three weeks of concerts in June. Chopin wrote some of his masterpieces at that inspirational spot in central France.
Poland's parliament has formally declared 2010 to be the "Year of Chopin," and officials in Warsaw feel his Polishness must be stressed because many non-Poles still associate him primarily with France.
Chopin always had a strong Polish identity. He surrounded himself with Poles in France whenever he could and never felt fully comfortable with the French language.
The matter touches a nerve in Poland, which has more often than not been controlled by foreign powers over the past two centuries - most recently during the decades of Moscow-imposed communist rule thrown off in 1989. Poles don't want to lose credit for Chopin, a genius whose universal appeal is even greater than that of Pope John Paul II and Lech Walesa - at least according to Brymora.
In Chopin's day, Poland was partitioned by Russia, Prussia and Austria and did not exist as a state. In 1830, soon after Chopin embarked on a tour of Europe, an uprising broke out in Warsaw against its Russian rulers. It was put down with brutality, and a period of Russian repression followed that sent many other Polish artists into exile.
Chopin never returned, mainly because it would have been "regarded as a betrayal of the others who were in exile," Zamoyski said. "Many of them couldn't return without facing prison - or worse, death."
Poles hear in his music a deep nostalgia for his homeland, and stress the Polish elements in his oeuvre - particularly in his Polonaises and Mazurkas, styles rooted in Polish folk music.
Halina Goldberg, author of "Music in Chopin's Warsaw," said that even before Chopin's death in 1849, Poles turned to his art to preserve a sense of their nationhood.
But others have also claimed him - Germans have said his music falls into the tradition of German Romanticism; Russians call him a Slavic genius.
"There is always a question of how much Polishness is in his music," Goldberg, a music professor at Indiana University, said. "Much of it is in the ear of the beholder."
Certainly Nazi Germany, which occupied Poland during World War II, heard something subversive and banned it. The Nazis were clearly aware of what German composer Robert Schumann, also born in 1810, called Chopin's "cannons hidden beneath flowers."
"As Chopin was one of the rallying points of Polish identity, it was just one more thing that needed to be forbidden and destroyed," Zamoyski said.
After his death, Chopin was eulogized movingly by the Polish poet Cyprian Kamil Norwid, who wrote that: "In the crystal of his own harmony he gathered the tears of the Polish people strewn over the fields, and placed them as the diamond of beauty in the diadem of humanity."
Now that Poland is again independent, it can savor that beauty without the tears.

This picture is the birthplace of Frederick Chopin in Poland!

In Chopin's final years:

In 1847, Chopin's public popularity as a virtuoso waned, as did the number of his pupils. In February 1848, he gave his last Paris concert. In April, with the Revolution of 1848 underway in Paris, he left for London, where he performed at several concerts and at numerous receptions in great houses.

Toward the end of the summer he went to Scotland, staying at the castle in Renfrewshire, near Glasgow) of his former pupil and great admirer Jane Wilhelmina Stirling and her elder sister, the widowed Mrs. Katherine Erskine. Miss Stirling proposed marriage to him; but Chopin, sensing that he was not long for this world, set greater store by his freedom than by the prospect of living on the generosity of a wife.

In late October 1848 in Edinburgh, at the home of a Polish physician, Dr. Adam Lyszczynski.
Chopin wrote out his last will and testament—"a kind of disposition to be made of my stuff in the future, if I should drop dead somewhere," he wrote his friend Wojciech Grzymala. In his thoughts he was now constantly with his mother and sisters, and conjured up for himself scenes of his native land by playing his adaptations of its folk music on cool Scottish evenings at Miss Stirling's castle.

Chopin made his last public appearance on a concert platform at London's Guildhall on 16 November 1848, when, in a final patriotic gesture, he played for the benefit of Polish refugees. His appearance on this occasion proved to be a well-intentioned mistake, as most of the participants were more interested in the dancing and refreshments than in Chopin's piano artistry, which cost him much effort and physical discomfort.

At the end of November, Chopin returned to Paris.

He passed the winter in unremitting illness, but in spite of it he continued seeing friends and visited the ailing Adam Mickiewicz, soothing the Polish poet's nerves with his playing. He no longer had the strength to give lessons, but he was still keen to compose. He lacked money for the most essential expenses and for his physicians. He had to sell off his more valuable furnishings and belongings.

Feeling ever more poorly, Chopin desired to have one of his family with him. In June 1849 his sister Ludwika Jedrzejewicz, who had given him his first piano lessons, agreed to come to Paris. He had lately taken up residence in a very beautiful, sunny apartment at Place Vendôme. It was there, a few minutes before two o'clock on the morning of Wednesday, 17 October 1849, that Chopin died.

Later, many persons who had not been present at Chopin's death would claim to have been there. "Being present at Chopin's death," writes Tad Szulc, "seemed to grant one historical and social cachet.

Those actually around his bed appear to have included his sister Ludwika, Princess Marcelina Czartoryska, George Sand's daughter Solange and her husband Auguste Clésinger, and Chopin's friend and former pupil Adolf Gutmann, his friend Thomas Albrecht, and his confidant, Polish Catholic priest Father Aleksander Jelowicki.

Later that morning, Auguste Clésinger made Chopin's death mask and casts of his hands. Before the funeral, pursuant to Chopin's dying wish (which stemmed from a fear of being buried alive), his heart was removed and preserved in alcohol, perhaps brandy. His sister later took it in an urn to Warsaw, where it was sealed within a pillar of the Holy Cross Church on Krakowskie Przedmiescie, beneath an inscription from Matthew VI:21: "For where your treasure is, there will your heart be also." Chopin's heart has remained there—except for a period during World War II, when it was removed for safekeeping—within the church that was rebuilt after its virtual destruction during the 1944 Warsaw Uprising. The church stands only a short distance from Chopin's last Polish residence, the Krasinski Palace at Krakowskie Przedmiescie 5.

The funeral, to be held at the Church of the Madeleine in Paris, was delayed for almost two weeks, until 30 October. Chopin had requested that Mozart's Requiem be sung. The Requiem had major parts for female voices, but the Church of the Madeleine had never permitted female singers in its choir. The Church finally relented, but on condition that the female singers remain behind a black velvet curtain. The soloists in the Requiem included the bass Luigi Lablache — who had sung the same work at Haydn's funeral and had also sung at Bellini's funeral — and Chopin's and George Sand's friend, the mezzo-soprano Pauline Viardot.

Also played were Chopin's Préludes No. 4 in E minor and No. 6 in B minor. The funeral was attended by nearly three thousand people, but George Sand was not among them.Chopin was buried, in accordance with his wishes, at Père Lachaise Cemetery. At the graveside, the Funeral March from his Sonata No. 2 in B flat minor, Op. 35 was played, in Napoléon Henri Reber's instrumentation.

Chopin's grave, with its monument carved by Clésinger, attracts numerous visitors and is consistently decorated with flowers, even in winter.In 2008, a controversy arose over whether Chopin died of tuberculosis or cystic fibrosis, an incurable genetic disease whose complete clinical spectrum was not recognised until the 1930s, almost a century after his death. The Polish government declined to allow scientists to remove Chopin's heart from its repository for DNA testing.

There is various memorials to this great composer:

In 1909, to celebrate Chopin's centenary,there was an"symphonic poem in memory of Chopin", titled Zhelazova Vola, Op. 37, a reference to Chopin's birthplace.
Chopin statue in winter, Warsaw's Royal Baths Park

In 1926, a bronze statue of Chopin designed by sculptor Waclaw Szymanowski in 1907, was erected in the upper part of Warsaw's Royal Baths (Lazienki) Park, adjacent to Ujazdów Avenue (Aleje Ujazdowskie). The statue was originally to have been erected in 1910, on the centenary of Chopin's birth, but its execution was delayed by controversy about the design, then by the outbreak of World War I.

On 31 May 1940, during the German occupation of Poland in World War II, the statue was destroyed by the Nazis. It was reconstructed after the war, in 1958. Since 1959, free piano recitals of Chopin's compositions have been performed at the statue's base on summer Sunday afternoons. The stylized willow over Chopin's seated figure echoes a pianist's hand and fingers. Until 2007, the statue was the world's tallest monument erected to Chopin.

A 1:1-scale replica of Szymanowski's Art Nouveau statue is found in Warsaw's sister city of Hamamatsu, Japan. There are also preliminary plans to erect another replica along Chicago's lakefront in addition to a different sculpture commemorating the artist in Chopin Park for the 200th anniversary of Chopin's birth.There are numerous other monuments to Chopin around the world.

The most recent, and by a small margin taller than the Warsaw statue, is a modernistic bronze sculpture by Lu Pin in Shanghai, China, that was unveiled on 3 March 2007.The world's oldest monographic music competition, the International Frédéric Chopin Piano Competition, founded in 1927, is held every five years in Warsaw.

Periodically the Grand prix du disque de F. Chopin is awarded for notable Chopin recordings, both remastered and newly recorded work.Named for the composer are the largest Polish music conservatory, the Fryderyk Chopin Music Academy; Warsaw Frédéric Chopin Airport; and asteroid 3784 Chopin.

His music is truly unique and different. I am a big fan of this great composer!

Chopin, according to Arthur Hedley, "had the rare gift of a very personal melody, expressive of heart-felt emotion, and his music is penetrated by a poetic feeling that has an almost universal appeal.... Present-day evaluation places him among the immortals of music by reason of his insight into the secret places of the heart and because of his awareness of the magical new sonorities to be drawn from the piano."

It is very difficult to characterise Chopin's oeuvre briefly. Robert Schumann, speaking of Chopin's Sonata in B-flat minor, wrote that "he alone begins and ends a work like this: with dissonances, through dissonances, and in dissonances," and in Chopin's music he discerned "cannon concealed amid blossoms." Franz Liszt, in the opening of his biography about Chopin (Life of Chopin), termed him a "gentle, harmonious genius." Thus disparate have been the views on Chopin's music. The first systematic, if imperfect, study of Chopin's style came in F. P. Laurencin's 1861 Die Harmonik der Neuzeit. Laurencin concluded that "Chopin is one of the most brilliant exceptional natures that have ever stridden onto the stage of history and life, he is one who can never be exhausted nor stand before a void. Chopin is the musical progone.

Chopin's music for the piano combined a unique rhythmic sense (particularly his use of rubato), frequent use of chromaticism, and counterpoint. This mixture produces a particularly fragile sound in the melody and the harmony, which are nonetheless underpinned by solid and interesting harmonic techniques. He took the new salon genre of the nocturne, invented by Irish composer John Field, to a deeper level of sophistication. Three of Chopin's twenty-one Nocturnes were published only after his death in 1849, contrary to his wishes.

He also endowed popular dance forms, such as the Polish mazurek and the Viennese waltz, with a greater range of melody and expression. Chopin's mazurkas, while based somewhat on the traditional Polish dance, were different from the traditional variety in that they were suitable for concerts halls as well as dance settings. With his mazurkas, Chopin brought a new sense of nationalism, which was an idea other composers writing both at the same time as and after Chopin would also incorporate into their compositions. Chopin’s nationalism was a great influence and inspiration for many other composers, especially Eastern Europeans, and he was one of the first composers to clearly express nationalism through his music.

Furthermore, he was the first composer to take a national genre of music from his home country and transform it into a genre worthy of the general concert-going public, thereby creating an entirely new genre.Chopin was the first to write ballades and scherzi as individual pieces. He also took the example of Bach's preludes and fugues, transforming the genre in his own Préludes.Further information: Nocturnes (Chopin), Preludes (Chopin), and Études (Chopin)Chopin reinvented the étude, expanding on the idea and making it into a gorgeous, eloquent and emotional showpiece. He also used his Études to teach his own revolutionary style, for instance playing with the weak fingers (3, 4, and 5) in fast figures (Op. 10, No. 2), playing in octaves (Op 25, No.10) and playing black keys with the thumb (Op. 10, No. 5).

InfluencePillar in Warsaw's Holy Cross Church. Contained within (bottom) is an urn with Chopin's heart.

Above is an epitaph with a verse from Gospel of Matthew: "For where your treasure is, there will your heart be also."Several of Chopin's pieces have become very well known—for instance the Revolutionary Étude (Op. 10, No. 12), the Minute Waltz (Op. 64, No. 1), and the third movement of his Funeral March Sonata No. 2 (Op. 35), which is often used as an iconic representation of grief.

Chopin himself never named an instrumental work beyond genre and number, leaving all potential extra-musical associations to the listener; the names by which we know many of the pieces were invented by others.

The Revolutionary Étude was not written with the failed Polish uprising against Russia in mind; it merely appeared at that time. The Funeral March was written before the rest of the sonata within which it is contained, but the exact occasion is not known; it appears not to have been inspired by any specific personal bereavement.

Other melodies have been used as the basis of popular songs, such as the slow section of the Fantaisie-Impromptu (Op. posth. 66) and the first section of the Étude, Op. 10, No. 3. These pieces often rely on an intense and personalised chromaticism, as well as a melodic curve that resembles the operas of Chopin's day — the operas of Gioachino Rossini, Gaetano Donizetti, and especially Vincenzo Bellini.

Chopin used the piano to recreate the gracefulness of the singing voice, and talked and wrote constantly about singers.Chopin's style and gifts became increasingly influential. Robert Schumann was a huge admirer of Chopin's music, and he used melodies from Chopin and even named a piece from his suite Carnaval after Chopin.

This admiration was not generally reciprocated, although Chopin did dedicate his Ballade No. 2 in F major to Schumann. Franz Liszt was another admirer and personal friend of the composer, and he transcribed for piano six of Chopin's Polish songs. However, Liszt denied that he wrote Funérailles (subtitled "October 1849", the seventh movement of his piano suite Harmonies poétiques et religieuses of 1853) in memory of Chopin.

Though the middle section seems to be modeled on the famous octave trio section of Chopin's Polonaise in A flat major, Op. 53, Liszt said the piece had been inspired by the deaths of three of his Hungarian compatriots in the same month. Johannes Brahms and the younger Russian composers, too, found inspiration in Chopin's examples.

Chopin's technical innovations became influential. His Préludes (Op. 28) and Études (Opp. 10 and 25) rapidly became standard works, and inspired both Liszt's Transcendental Études and Schumann's Symphonic Studies. Alexander Scriabin was also strongly influenced by Chopin; Jeremy Siepmann, in his biography of the composer, lists pianists whose recordings of Chopin are generally acknowledged to be among the greatest Chopin performances ever preserved: Ignacy Jan Paderewski, Moriz Rosenthal, Ignaz Friedman, Vladimir Horowitz, Arthur Rubinstein said the following about Chopin's music and its universality.

Chopin was a genius of universal appeal. His music conquers the most diverse audiences. When the first notes of Chopin sound through the concert hall there is a happy sigh of recognition. All over the world men and women know his music. They love it. They are moved by it. Yet it is not "Romantic music" in the Byronic sense. It does not tell stories or paint pictures. It is expressive and personal, but still a pure art. Even in this abstract atomic age, where emotion is not fashionable, Chopin endures. His music is the universal language of human communication. When I play Chopin I know I speak directly to the hearts of people!

Although Chopin lived in the 1800s, he was educated in the tradition of Beethoven, Haydn, Mozart and Clementi; he used Clementi's piano method with his own students. He was also influenced by Hummel's development of virtuoso, yet Mozartian, piano technique. Chopin cited Bach and Mozart as the two most important composers in shaping his musical outlook.

The series of seven Polonaises published in his lifetime (another nine were published posthumously), beginning with the Op. 26 pair, set a new standard for music in the form, and were rooted in Chopin's desire to write something to celebrate Polish culture after the country had fallen into Russian control.

The Polonaise in A major, Op. 40, No. 1, the "Military," and the Polonaise in A-flat major, Op. 53, the "Heroic," are among Chopin's best-loved and most-often-played works.

Rubato: Chopin's music is well known for benefiting from rubato (which was how he himself performed his music),as opposed to a strictly regular playing. Yet there is usually call for caution when the music is performed with wobbly, over-exaggerated, inappropriate "rubato" (e.g. attempting to justify insecure playing, with reference to expressive rubato).
His playing was always noble and beautiful; his tones sang, whether in full forte or softest piano.

He took infinite pains to teach his pupils this legato, cantabile style of playing. His most severe criticism was "He—or she—does not know how to join two notes together." He also demanded the strictest adherence to rhythm. He hated all lingering and dragging, misplaced rubatos, as well as exaggerated ritardandos ... and it is precisely in this respect that people make such terrible errors in playing his works.—Friederike Müller , "From the Diary of a Viennese Chopin Pupil".

However, while some can provide restrictive quotes about Chopin such as the above, often to the effect that "the accompanying hand always played in strict tempo", these quotes need to be considered in better context in terms both of the time when they were made and of the situations that may have prompted the original writer to set down the thoughts. Constantin von Sternberg (1852–1924) has written:

It is amusing to note that even some serious persons express the idea that in tempo rubato "the right hand may use a certain freedom while the left hand must keep strict time." (See Niecks' Life of Chopin, II, p. 101.) A nice sort of music would result from such playing! Something like the singing of a good vocalist accompanied by a poor blockhead who hammers away in strict time without yielding to the singer who, in sheer despair, must renounce all artistic expression. It is reported by some ladies that Chopin himself gave them this explanation.

This suggests that Chopin is not to be found at commonly encountered one-sided extremes. The unbalanced views are:that Chopin requires metronomic rhythm in the left hand; that insecure performances of Chopin can be justified with reference to rubato. that performances with particular inflections, that result from technical limits/insecurities rather than a performer's intentions, can be justified with reference to rubato. Some performers' (and piano-schools') "too-strongly-held one-sided views on Chopin's way of playing rubato" may account for some unsatisfactory interpretations of his music.

Romanticism: Chopin regarded most of his contemporaries with indifference, though he had many acquaintances who were associated with romanticism in music, literature, and the fine arts—many of them via his liaison with George Sand. Chopin's music is, however, considered by many to epitomise the Romantic style. The relative classical purity and discretion in his music, with little extravagant exhibitionism, partly reflects his reverence for Bach and Mozart.

Chopin never indulged in explicit "scene-painting" in his music, or used programmatic titles. He castigated publishers who renamed his compositions in this way.

Nationalism Chopin monument at Zelazowa Wola, by Goslawski Zdzislaw Jachimecki notes that "Chopin at every step demonstrated his Polish spirit — in the hundreds of letters that he wrote in Polish, in his attitude to Paris's [Polish] émigrés, in his negative view of all that bore the official stamp of the powers that occupied Poland."

Likewise Chopin composed music to accompany Polish texts but never musically illustrated a single French or German text, even though he numbered among his friends several great French and German poets.

According to Arthur Hedley, Chopin "found within himself and in the tragic story of Poland the chief sources of his inspiration. The theme of Poland's glories and sufferings was constantly before him, and he transmuted the primitive rhythms and melodies of his youth into enduring art forms."

In asserting his own Polishness, Chopin, according to Jachimecki, exerted "a tremendous influence [toward] the nationalization of the work of numerous later composers, who have often personally — like the confirmed this opinion..."

Frédéric Chopin was born fifty kilometers west of Warsaw, at Zelazowa Wola in Sochaczew County, in what was then part of the Duchy of Warsaw. His father, Mikolaj (in French, Nicolas) Chopin, originally a Frenchman from Lorraine, had emigrated to Poland in 1787 at age sixteen and had served in Poland's National Guard during the Kosciuszko Uprising. He subsequently tutored children of the aristocracy, including the Skarbeks—one of whose poorer relations, Justyna Krzyzanowska, he married. Justyna's brother would become the father of American Union General Wlodzimierz Krzyzanowski

Mikolaj and Justyna were married in the 16th-century basilica in Brochów. There, too, their second child and only son, born 1 March 1810, would be baptized "Fryderyk Franciszek Chopin".

In 1892 a parish church document was found that cites his birthdate as 22 February 1810, but he usually gave 1 March as the date.
Burial: Holy Cross Church Warsaw Mazowieckie Voivodeship, Poland
Plot: Location of heart only, in accordance to Chopin's wishes. Specifically: Location of heart only.
Frederic Francois Chopin: thank you for wonderful talents in the music world, happy 200th birthday!

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