In 1819, music publisher sent a simple waltz theme to noted Austrian composers, asking each to provide a variation. Many returned them and these were published in the Vaterländischer Künstlerverein of 1824. Beethoven seems to have originally been put off by Diabelli's remarkable self-promotion, but later composed not one, but thirty-three separate variations. Many hold these to be among the greatest works of his later life.
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