The German composer (1770-1827) is one of the most influential composers of all time and played an important role in the transition from the Classical to Romantic eras in European classical music.
Best known among Beethoven's extensive oeuvre is his Ninth Symphony, which includes the "Ode to Joy" chorus. The tune has since become the anthem of the European Union. Tragically, Beethoven came to suffer from hearing loss, which gradually worsened of the years. Nevertheless, he continued to compose. The musician moved to Vienna in his early 20s, but is also considered the most famous son of Bonn, Germany, where his birth home serves as a tourist attraction.
Honored by the Beethoven Academy, the rock musician has emerged as one of Germany's most prominent humanitarians. DW spoke with Niedecken on his work with former child soldiers and his push for integration in Germany.