YMMV / Ludwig van Beethoven

  • Awesome Ego: When he was still able to perform, Beethoven would pointedly stop playing if he heard any of the audience members whispering. He broke a chair over the head of one of his patrons. And yet he wasn't locked up; his behaviour was taken to be evidence of his genius, and indeed his disdain for authority and social rank was so pronounced that an Archduke decreed that etiquette laws did not apply to Beethoven. He wasn't the first composer to have an Awesome Ego, just the most famous.note 
    • When he was asked to send in a composition for the joint project of many popular composers of his time, curated by Anton Diabelli, he initially refused as he didn't want to be a "cobbler's patch". Beethoven however took the proposed motif and ran amok with it, resulting into the famous Diabelli variations. Diabelli considered them so Badass that he released his contribution as an independent volume, putting all fellow composers to shame. Which included big names like Franz Schubert and Franz Liszt.
  • Crowning Moment of Heartwarming: At the end of the first performance of the ninth symphony, which Beethoven directed himself despite being completely deaf, the audience gave him five standing ovations - and they did it by waving hats and handkerchiefs in the air so he could see the applause he couldn't hear.
  • Crowning Music of Awesome
  • Growing the Beard: Some people feel that the music he wrote after he went deaf is more interesting than his earlier music.
  • Memetic Mutation: Dun-dun-dun DUUUUNNNN!
  • Sampled Up: Henry van Dyke's hymn "Joyful Joyful We Adore Thee" is set to Ode to Joy.
  • Vindicated by History: The first performance of the Ninth reportedly was a bit of a failure, and after opening night it did poorly. Possibly partly because Beethoven insisted on directing it himself despite being completely deaf - to the point where he was still conducting after the orchestra finished playing.
    • The premiere of the Fifth Symphony was in a concert that lasted four hours on a cold, December night and the audience was tired. Needless to say, it was not very well accepted in its first performance. It took a review by E. T. A. Hoffmann to bring its genius to light. However, It Makes Sense in Context - the premiere was during the Napoleonic Wars, and as a result the orchestra was only able to rehearse the piece once before the performance, and mangled it so badly that Beethoven was forced to stop and restart at one point.