Two German Dances (Beethoven)

In 1792, at the age of 22, Beethoven left his native Bonn to seek his fortune in the imperial capital, Vienna, where had lessons with Haydn, Salieri and Albrechtsberger and gained fame as a virtuoso pianist.

The annual Artistsí Pension Society Ball was a renowned high-society occasion in the city and new dance music was written every year by the popular composers of the time, including Haydn, Kozeluch, Dittersdorf and Eybler. In 1795 Beethoven provided a set of 12 minuets and 12 German dances, a form from the villages of Bavaria and Austria which was to lead to the development and popularity of the waltz in Vienna later in the century. Originally written for orchestra, these dances are also popular in their piano arrangements. The two dances used in this arrangement are taken from this 1795 set.