Franz Ignaz von Beecke

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Franz Ignaz von Beecke (October 28, 1733 – January 2, 1803) was a classical music composer born in Wimpfen am Neckar, Germany.

Von Beecke served in the Bavarian Dragoon Regiment of Zollern from 1756, during which time he fought in the Seven Years' War. He served with distinction and was promoted to Captain. He was known at the time chiefly for his great skill in playing the harpsichord, although he composed a wide range of music as well, having studied with Christoph Willibald Gluck. He died in Wallerstein, Germany.

In 1775, von Beecké met the 19-year-old Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart in Munich and the two engaged in a piano playing competition. The poet and composer Christian Friedrich Daniel Schubart, who was in the audience, wrote in his Teutsche Chronik (27 April 1775) that in his opinion, von Beecke played far better than Mozart: "In Munich last winter I heard two of the greatest clavier players, Mr Mozart and Captain von Beecke. Mozart’s playing had great weight, and he read at sight everything that we put before him. But no more than that; Beecke surpasses him by a long way. Winged agility, grace and melting sweetness." [1]


  1. ^ [John Irving: Mozart Piano Sonatas: Contexts, Sources, Style. Cambridge University Press 1997, ISBN 0521 496314, page 56]

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