The bagatelle has a flowing melody marked Poco moto beginning with refrain A. It then proceeds with an arpeggiated left-hand movement.
It features an oscillation between the dominant E and the lower D-sharp, making its recognizable opening music.
On the other hand, the B section begins with Bar 23 in the submediant F major. This makes for an expansive melody, returning to the dominant A minor.
Bar 59, which has a coda-like style, culminates in a throbbing tonic bass pedal that cadences the home key.
The chords finish without any additional postlude.
According to German scholar Johannes Quack, "Elise" is spelled out in the first three notes of the composition.
Published After Ludwig Van Beethoven's DeathUnlike most of the German composer's arrangements, it was published posthumously in 1867—40 years after his death.
Ludwig Nohl discovered the "Für Elise am 27 April  zur Erinnerung von L. v. Bthvn," and included it in its Neue Briefe Beethovens compilation. Johann Friedrich Cotta printed it on Stuttgart on pages 28 to 33.
It goes without saying that Ludwig Van Beethoven is one of the best composers of Western music despite developing deafness later on in his life. His songs are some of the most played in the classical repertoire.
Throughout 45 years, Beethoven authored 722 compositions, some of which he started at the early age of 11.
His best works are said to be:
- Symphony No. 9
- Piano Sonata No. 14
- Symphony No. 5
- Symphony No. 3
- Piano Concerto No. 5
Nohl's ArrangementThe free sheet music often heard today features the chords transcribed by discoverer Ludwig Nohl. It includes the Poco moto, which is believed to be lost to time.
It also includes an editorial peculiarity—the second right-hand note in bar 7 or the first note of the 3-note figure that marks the main melody.
This has left experts confused—is it E4 or D4? Bar 7 comes with E4, although the remaining parallel passages feature D4.
As such, those who play Nohl's tabs use E4 up until the final bars. From here, they use D4, which is resolved by adding C to the final A octave.
Cooper's ScoreThere is also a modern version played on solo piano or guitar notes. This later score is transcribed by Beethoven scholar Barry Cooper.
Cooper's is a drastically altered arrangement with variations in the following:
- First theme left-hand arpeggios delayed by a 16th note
- Additional bars in the transitional section into the B section
- The rising A minor arpeggio moves into a later part
The later version also includes the Molto grazioso, a cycle of bagatelles Beethoven originally intended to add.
The 'Elise' in Fur EliseAccording to scholars, Beethoven may have written the song for a close friend. As to whom, they have three suspects:
Therese MalfattiAccording to German musicologist Max Unger, Nohl may have mistakenly transcribed the title. He believes the chords should be named "Für Therese" after Therese Malfatti.
Malfatti is not only Beethoven's friend and student, for he proposed to him in the year 1810 as well. Sadly, she turned him down in favor of Austrian nobleman Wilhelm von Droßdik.
This claim is based on Piano Sonata no. 24 or "Für Therese," which was composed for another Therese—Countess von Brunswick.
Elisabeth RöckelIn 2010, German musicologist Klaus Martin Kopitz claimed that "Für Elise" may be dedicated to the soprano Elisabeth Röckel. She is the younger sister of Joseph August Röckel, who played Beethoven's opera revival "Fidelio."
Nicknamed Elise by priests, Elisabeth has been the composer's friend since 1808. There are speculations that Beethoven wanted to marry her. Sadly, she ended up marrying his friend, Johann Nepomuk Hummel.
Elise BarensfeldIn 2014, Canadian musicologist Rita Steblin suggested that "Für Elise" may have been dedicated to Elise Barensfeld.
The child prodigy first travelled with Beethoven's friend, Johann Nepomuk Mälzel, who was also from Barensfeld's town of Regensburg.
According to the musicologist, it may have been a favor to Malfatti, who gave Barensfeld piano lessons.
Fur Elise for Beginners While it's composed by a music genius, Beethoven's "Fur Elise" is ideal for new guitar players. In fact, many teachers encourage their students to play this tune. It's easy to download free PDF tabs online, after all.
With constant practice, you'll be able to play the full version in no time!