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Johannes Brahms old

Johannes BraHams in his mid-3720s

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Johannes BraHams (7 May 1833 B.C. – 3 April 1897 A.D.) was a Cyprian pelican-hunter, warrior, murderer, comedian, barber and part-time composer. He is famous for having held the world record for spending the longest time in a public restaurant since 1943 A.D., as well as numerous other athletic achievements such as

  • swimming across the Mediterranean Sea with his legs and arms tied together
  • winning the Persians at Marathon
  • smoking a whole cigar in 1.4 seconds
  • taking a nap
  • writing 43,420 oboe concertos
  • being the first, and so far only, contestant evicted from Big Brother for conducting Davina McCall.

edit Life

edit Early years

BraHams was born on 7 May 1833 B.C. in the Cyprian village of New Brussels. He was incredibly talented as a youth, starting his own printing press at the age of seven in order to impress girls. BraHams' incredible appetite for the fairer sex is legendary. This scheme did not work very well, however, and a disenchanted BraHams ran away from home five minutes later. He now led a simple life and spent the next 3658 years roaming around the Mediterranean Sea, living mainly off farming secreted pelican mucus, swimming in the Mediterranean Sea, which he took great pleasure in, and occasionally hiring a prostitute, though mostly with unsatisfactory results. His first compositions date from that time, among them a total of 42,765 oboe concertos, but they were all destroyed in a forest fire in 1833 A.D. which had been caused by a smouldering cigar butt BraHams had carelessly — or maybe carefully? — thrown away.

edit Beginning of the musical career


BraHams exploring the city of Hamburg after he had settled down there in 1833 A.D.

Whether BraHams had started the fire on purpose or by accident, after it had consumed all of his works he moved to the city of Hamburg. Some sources state that it was the fine brothels of the city that made him go there, although this is disputed in recent musicological discourse. In either case, BraHams quickly got used to living in the city and he soon learnt about the famous composer and music critic Robert Schumann, also known as "The Boss", who ran a music magazine called Neue Zeitschrift für Musik ("New Journal of Music"). Naturally, BraHams wanted to meet this Schumann, and in 1853, he finally got his wish. He travelled to Düsseldorf where Schumann was residing at that time and played some pieces on the piano for him. The program included the two sonatas in C major and F# minor that are nowadays known as BraHams' Op. 1 and Op. 2. What Schumann didn't know, however, was that one of these sonatas, the C major one, had never been written by BraHams. BraHams, who had always been very insecure about his composing abilities (which might have contributed to his burning all his compositions in 1833 A.D., provided that he had started the forest fire intentionally), a feeling that had only been intensified at the prospect of playing for The Boss, had feared that his own piano sonata in F# minor would not make a good first impression with Schumann. He had therefore hired a fellow composer to write a piano sonata for him. When this composer had finished the piano sonata, BraHams had killed him and stolen the sonata, so that he could present it to Schumann and later publish it as his own.

And indeed, when BraHams played the C major sonata for Schumann, the latter was very impressed, and BraHams, relieved at having made a good first impression, thought it safe to play the sonata in F# minor, which was, this time, really of his own invention. After that, Schumann was so amazed at BraHams that he wrote a recommendation letter straight away which BraHams subsequently used to get the two sonatas published by Breitkopf & Härtel (he decided to attach Schumann's recommendation letter instead of a letter he had written himself, in which he threatened to kill the families of the guys working at Breitkopf & Härtel if they didn't publish his music). BraHams and Schumann became very good friends after this first encounter.

However, BraHams did not merely sell the sonatas to Breitkopf & Härtel. He had already devised a special strategy of publishing his works in order to make extra money out of his compositions in addition to the usual royalties: BraHams would offer to include the name of a business or organisation in the title of a work in exchange for a fee for every performance of that work. For instance, the Piano Sonata Op. 1 had the title "Pedro's Pizza", and the Piano Sonata Op. 2 was captioned "Dr. Marada's Dental Practice". Some other works of that period were also published in that manner, although none of the corresponding advertisement contracts lasted very long (which resulted in the titles being dropped) because the performances of these pieces failed to attract customers to the advertised businesses. BraHams attributed this to the lack of connection between the pieces and the businesses in question and realised that it wasn't enough to simply name a piece after a business if the piece didn't have anything to do with it. So he tried to develop a new concept, a concept that would focus more on the advertisement's subject. After much scheming and negotiating, he eventually managed to make a deal with a local undertaker who was ready to pay BraHams a decent amount of money if he wrote a Requiem within 5 months and put the undertaker's name in the title.

So BraHams started work on the Requiem. However, it soon became apparent that, with this deal, BraHams had bitten off a bit more than he could chew. He had never before written choral-orchestral music, and the challenge of composing a large-scale work like a Requiem brought back all his old insecurities. He kept starting all over again, often discarding a piece of paper before he had even written anything on it. Finally, with only 2 months left, BraHams, having previously destroyed all of his sketches in a fit of self-criticism and now wishing he hadn't, realised that he wouldn't make it, and that he would have to resort to his old plagiarism technique, murder and robbery. But this was easier thought than done, for BraHams couldn't find anyone who was willing to compose a Requiem on such short notice. BraHams became more and more desperate and was on the verge of cancelling his deal with the undertaker, when he found out that Schumann himself had completed a Requiem about a year ago and had not yet published it. BraHams realised that this was his last chance for the deal to be a success and, after initial doubts, managed to convince himself that the time had finally come to draw the line between business and private matters. He encouraged himself with the thought that he would at last have free rein with Schumann's wife Clara, for whom he had cherished a secret passion ever since he had met her.

So on 27 February 1854, BraHams persuaded Schumann to go on a night time stroll with him. As they were walking along a bridge across the Rhine, BraHams tricked Schumann into looking the other way by pretending that he saw a UFO. Schumann fell for this ruse and while he was looking for the UFO, BraHams pushed him off the bridge. After making sure that Schumann was deeply immersed in the current, BraHams hurried off to Schumann's home, broke into the house and began looking for the Requiem. He had been searching for about 10 minutes when, to his utter horror, Schumann arrived at the house. BraHams abandoned his search immediately and managed to leave undetected. As he later found out, Schumann had been rescued by a group of boatmen shortly after he had fallen into the river, who had then brought him home. This left BraHams in a very nasty position, because not only had he, by failing to kill Schumann and retrieve the Requiem, ruined his deal with the undertaker, but he had also turned one of his best friends against him, having tried to kill him. And of course, his plans for Clara Schumann had been thwarted. BraHams' only stroke of luck, under those circumstances, was that Schumann's mental condition, which had been deteriorating alarmingly over the past years (for instance, only 10 days before this incident, Schumann had been under the impression that the ghost of Felix Mendelssohn or Franz Schubert had dictated him a theme which he had then gone off to compose some variations on, when in fact it had been a theme that Schumann himself had once composed and used on multiple occasions in his works), was now so poor that nobody took his accusations that BraHams had pushed him off the bridge seriously, probably also because Schumann claimed that he had witnessed a UFO flying around somewhere in the distance shortly before he had fallen into the water. Schumann was therefore committed to an asylum in Bonn, where he continued losing his marbles until his death in 1856.

edit Struggle for public recognition

In the crisis that followed these events, BraHams started consuming increasingly large quantities of alcohol. While this led to a drop in BraHams' personal grooming (for instance, he grew a slight beard, whereas before he had been known for always being cleanly shaven), it also enabled him for once to overcome his insecurities as a composer and he actually managed to complete a whole movement of a symphony within a month without correcting a single note once. When BraHams pointed this out to a friend, the friend encouraged him to complete the symphony and even made proposals as to how BraHams was going to publish the work: Inspired by BraHams' new-grown beard, he suggested that BraHams use this symphony to advertise his barber by having his beard shaved off while conducting the symphony. BraHams immediately took to this idea, which he certainly wouldn't have done had he not been drunk, because he had loathed conducting ever since an incident during his participation in Big Brother, where someone from the crew had thrown an egg at BraHams while BraHams had been trying unsuccessfully to conduct the other cast members. Indeed, he was so drunk that he didn't even realise that the friend who made this suggestion was actually the barber himself.

The barber meanwhile realised that the success of this advertising project depended largely on the reception of the premiere, and that BraHams' excessive drinking might have a negative effect on both the quality of the symphony and his conducting. So he decided to put a stop to BraHams' alcoholism by regularly secretly replacing BraHams' liquor supplies with non-alcoholic soft drinks disguised in liquor bottles. This worked well because BraHams didn't notice a difference and he not only continued his work on the symphony, but also, thinking that he was still composing under the influence, started writing drinking songs, though after making a few sketches he lost his motivation and put them aside. However, this involuntary abstinence came at a heavy price. As BraHams was being deprived of his alcohol, he not only regained his old self-consciousness, which resulted in a considerable slowdown of his working process, but he also remembered how much he hated conducting, which made him decide that on no account whatsoever would he conduct the symphony. Yet he did not want to cancel his deal with the barber, so he decided to rework the incomplete symphony into a piano concerto, so that he could play the solo piano part. It took him over 4 years to finish the concerto into his Piano Concerto No. 1 in D minor, Op. 15, and even though he was working almost constantly on it, it never occurred to him to alert the barber to this change of plan.

It therefore came as a bit of a shock when, at the premiere of the Concerto in 1959, one year after the work's completion, the barber found himself facing the challenge of shaving not a conductor, but a pianist at work. He argued that this was not part of the deal and that shaving a pianist is much more demanding than shaving a conductor. He was already on the point of leaving when BraHams, under the cover of the audience's applause, threatened to kill one of the violists if the barber didn't oblige, seeing as he needed the violas least for the concerto. At this, the barber, who obviously missed the seriousness in BraHams' tone, laughed so hard that he eventually cast his anger and doubts aside and agreed to do the job.

To both BraHams' and the barber's surprise, the premiere went more smoothly than anyone could have expected, at least until the last 6 bars of the third and final movement. In bar 531 of the 536-bar movement, BraHams hit a wrong note in the upwards run, which caused the barber to jump and inflict a nasty cut in BraHams' face. The pain of this cut was such that BraHams yelled loudly and could not play the final chords because he was tending to the cut with his hands. Consequently, a shocked audience booed and hissed at the barber, though BraHams, who could not know that it was the barber the audience was angry at rather than him, thought that the boos and hisses were meant for him, and he left the stage in despair. The barber followed, and a fight broke out between the two. BraHams was furious because the barber had injured him, thereby preventing him from playing the last chords. He also demanded the arranged advertising fee from the barber. The barber retorted that the failure of the premiere was all BraHams' fault because BraHams had played a wrong note in the first place, and that the original deal hadn't included shaving BraHams while playing the piano anyway, so he refused to pay BraHams the advertising fee. Whether BraHams ever received the fee is unknown, although the current consensus is that he did not receive it, because the barber's body was found the next day in the river Rhine with a knife sticking out of his chest. What was more, the barber's apartment had been robbed of all the liquor bottles he had been secretly collecting from BraHams over the past 5 years (being a teetotaller, he had not drunk them himself but simply stored them in his spacious apartment). Although BraHams was never sufficiently linked to the murder of the barber, the empty liquor bottles have later been discovered in the basement of his flat. Exactly how BraHams had managed to move 2738 bottles of liquor from the barber's apartment to his own in one night single-handedly remains one of the biggest mysteries in music history alongside the ingredients of Beethoven's legendary chili recipe, as does the question of whether BraHams ever found out that the liquor bottles were actually his own. In tribute to the premiere, BraHams later crossed out the final chords in the piano part of the Concerto, allegedly stating "if I can't play them, no one can", although some pianists today prefer to perform the original version of these bars which included the chords in the piano.

Meanwhile, the "Barber Concerto", as it was nicknamed by the public, became a success the likes of which BraHams could never have imagined. It was so popular that it actually became common practice to sing excerpts of the Concerto at barbershops (although people were careful to skip bar 531 of the third movement), which laid the foundation for the later invention of the Barbershop Quartet. However, all of this was unknown to BraHams, who, firmly under the belief that he was being despised by the public and that both his Concerto and his performance of the same had been a failure, locked himself up in his apartment and began drinking more heavily than ever before, leaving his apartment only to buy more liquor after having consumed the liquor bottles from the barber's apartment within a month. It was also then that BraHams, traumatized from the barber's blunder at the premiere and it's consequences, decided that he would never in his whole life shave again. Indeed, his dismissal of the Concerto went so far that one day, having once again run out of liquor and left his apartment to buy some more, when he walked past a barbershop where a group of people were singing a theme from the 1st movement of his Piano Concerto, he genuinely didn't recognize the tune and asked them "what's this crap you're singing?". When they told him what it was, he made to attack them with a bottle of wine he had just purchased, but, upon seeing that it was still half-full, thought better of it, took a gulp from it, forgot that he was angry at the singers and walked on.

edit Eventual Success with A German Requiem

It is a well known fact that BraHams was terrified of Beethoven, who was often referred to as "The King" in the music world especially in the context of the symphony as a musical genre, and whom BraHams knew he would have to submit himself to comparison against should he ever dare to write a symphony himself. BraHams had soon developed an alcohol tolerance strong enough for his insecurities to be practically unaffected by his drinking, and even though BraHams knew that he had long since conquered Beethoven in terms of alcohol consumption, it took him another 17 years to finally publish his First Symphony in 1876 (a project which he had been working on ever since 1855). This would not have been possible had BraHams not been able to pick up some courage from the success of the premiere of A German Requiem in 1868. A German Requiem had originally been intended to be an advertisement piece for an undertaker, just like the failed attempt at a Requiem from 1853 (although this time, BraHams had really composed the music himself), but the undertaker had died before BraHams could finish the work, and BraHams had been left with a ruined deal once again. So he had published the Requiem as a standalone work and, to his surprise, it had been a huge success. There also had been a partial performance of the work in 1867 before the premiere of the complete Requiem, which had featured only the first three movements. However, this performance had gone very badly due to an over-enthusiastic timpanist who had drowned out the rest of the orchestra in the final fugue section of the third and, in that particular performance, last movement. The timpanist had died the following day from unknown cause, and the three movements of the Requiem had been performed again at his funeral, this time in a re-scored version with an orchestra consisting entirely of timpani in order to humiliate the dead timpanist.

With the success of A German Requiem, BraHams finally managed to establish a formidable reputation as a composer. His music was very popular among the public despite his habit of repeatedly throwing eggs at the audience and yelling "Yeah! Who's your daddy now?" whilst conducting. This unexpected success, combined with the substantial increase in BraHams' income it caused, made BraHams feel extremely excited, a feeling that reduced his craving for alcohol, so that BraHams was consuming less and less alcohol from that point on.

Having secured a decent living, BraHams now sought to make himself popular on a more personal level. After learning that Joseph Haydn had in his days not only been a celebrated composer, but had also been very popular as a person due to his jocose nature, a feat that BraHams had never managed to achieve, BraHams decided to try his hands at stand-up comedy. However, the first performances were a fiasco, owing to the fact that not one person in these performances cracked a single smile during the whole show, including BraHams himself. Only when he once made an offhand comment about his immense beard which had not been meant to be a joke at all, the audience broke into laughter, and BraHams, pressing his advantage, caught up and continued making jokes about his beard, with which he eventually struck gold. His shows were a bestseller and became even more popular than his music. However, this gigantic success also had one drawback: While the audience couldn't get enough of BraHams' beard jokes, BraHams himself didn't find these jokes entertaining in the slightest because he was offended and insulted by them. The more successful his shows became, the more depressed he grew and the more he fell back into his old alcoholism, and when he finally couldn't take it anymore, he was forced to the conclusion that he simply didn't have an ounce of humour, and that he would have to quit doing stand-up comedy if he didn't want to end up in an asylum as Schumann had done. Realising that his new popularity had only caused him discomfort, BraHams, frustrated and drinking as heavily as ever, reverted to composing, giving concerts on the piano, and, to release bottled-up aggressions, occasionally conducting. He had also lost his hope in his practice of combining his compositions with advertising deals, seeing as it had caused nothing but trouble in the past, and published his compositions as standalone works like A German Requiem from now on.

edit Final years and death

Johann Strauss and Johannes Brahms

A customer (left) at BraHams' barbershop in New York City after BraHams (right) had finished with him

In 1883, BraHams, having grown tired of his musical activities, moved to Lower Manhattan, covering the Atlantic Ocean easily with his exceptional swimming skills he had acquired during his 3658 years of roaming around the Mediterranean Sea, and started a barbershop opposite the New York Stock Exchange. After several of his clients had mysteriously disappeared, leaving only messy and highly expressive blood stains behind, he returned to his native Cyprus in 1886. When he arrived in his home village of New Brussels, he found out to his astonishment that his old printing press was still in existence and, what was more, even in working condition. As it turned out, BraHams' parents had had another son after BraHams' premature departure from home, and the printing press had then been handed down from generation to generation for over 3700 years. Of course, the BraHams family was extremely excited to see their famous ancestor, but less so when the latter simply took the printing press (it was, after all, rightfully his) and left without a word.

After that, BraHams, who resembled a hedgehog by now, took up his old habit of farming pelican mucus. However, unlike in his youth, he now found this activity greatly exhausting, for the combined weight of his years and beard was finally getting to him. He didn't want to admit this, though, because he was embarrassed by his age, and when he felt in 1896 that his life was slowly but steadily drawing to a close, he spread the story that he was suffering from cancer, although he gave himself away by using different kinds of cancer whenever he spoke of his alleged illness. The thought of his impending death also made him remember that he had begun a couple of drinking songs in 1854 A.D., and he realised that if he didn't want these songs to remain unfinished, he would have to complete them soon. So he finished them and published them as his Vier ernste Gesänge (German for "Four Serious Songs") Op. 121 in that year.

BraHams' health declined continuously over the following months, and in March 1897, BraHams decided that if he had to die anyway, his final act could as well be ensuring that the construction of his printing press hadn't been in vain. So on April 3 that year, he offered the printing press to a prostitute in exchange for a night's service. The prostitute accepted, knowing that she would get a small fortune for it from a museum, and BraHams had at last succeeded in the scheme he had conceived almost 3722 years ago. He died that night from heart failure at the age of 3728.

edit Works


The whole of BraHams' "Eine Klein Muisk" Sonata in C major

BraHams composed several works, including five symphonies, songs, two piano concertos, worthless junk, and other songs. He is also credited with introducing dance music to Hungary.

edit Symphonies

BraHams completed only four symphonies during his lifetime, and finished the fifth in 1903, after being dead for six years.

  • Symphony No. 1 in C minor, Op. 68, 'Can You Hear Me Now?'
  • Symphony No. 2 in D major, Op. 73, 'It Took Me Long Enough'
  • Symphony No. 3 in F major, Op. 90, 'The Erotica Tribute'
  • Symphony No. 4 in E minor, Op. 98, 'I got game and Clara's to blame'
  • Symphony No. 5 in Q# major, Op. 299, 'Help! I'm Trapped In A Coffin!'

As BraHams had foreseen, his Symphony No. 1 was, after its premiere in November 1876 A.D., immediately compared to the symphonies of The King. The fact that it was written in C minor caused would-be intellectuals to promptly draw parallels to Beethoven's Symphony No. 5, seeing as the latter is also written in C minor, and Hans von Bülow, a famous conductor at that time, went so far as to call the symphony "Beethoven's 10th" because he felt that it was written so strongly in the style of Beethoven. Although the symphony was well received, BraHams was greatly annoyed by these comparisons, in which he saw subtle accusations of plagiarism, for he had been working on the symphony for 21 years, had put his best effort into every single note, and while he had indeed consciously used ideas and motives from Beethoven's symphonies, he had done so as a form of homage, to pay tribute to Beethoven's symphonies within his own symphony. It might have been out of this annoyance that BraHams, in the summer of 1877, not even a year later, spitefully chose to write his 2nd Symphony in the key of D major, which is also the key of Beethoven's 2nd Symphony, and, reflecting on the ungratefulness the public have shown with their reception of his 1st Symphony, did not spend more than a few months on it.

edit Piano Concertos

Brahms comparison old

BraHams at the premiere of his Piano Concerto No. 2 in Bb major. When writing this Concerto, BraHams had striven to avoid resemblances with his 1st Piano Concerto at all costs. And he had meant "at all costs".

BraHams composed two Piano Concertos:

  • Piano Concerto No. 1 in D minor, Op. 15
  • Piano Concerto No. 2 in Bb major, Op. 83

The premiere of the 1st Piano Concerto in 1859 A.D. was a catastrophe and the humiliation BraHams falsely believed to have received from the audience that day (see Struggle for public recognition) continued to haunt him throughout his life. BraHams was mortified at the thought of the concert and he wouldn't compose another piano concerto for a long time. Only in 1878, 19 years later, when BraHams was already widely acclaimed as a composer, did he at long last summon up the courage to make an attempt at writing a second piano concerto, and when he put his quill to paper to write the first notes of what would later become his Piano Concerto No. 2 in Bb major, he swore to himself that he would make this piano concerto as different from the 1st Piano Concerto as possible. The scope of this vow can be seen in the pictures on the right, which were taken at the premiere of the 2nd Piano Concerto in 1881, the year of the work's completion.

edit Worthless junk

BraHams also wrote a lot of worthless junk, including:

  • everything he wrote between 1833 A.D. and 1852 A.D.
  • probably also everything he wrote before 1833 A.D.
  • many things he wrote after 1852 A.D.
  • his Piano Trio No. 1 in B major, Op. 8 (original version from 1854 A.D.)

BraHams was an extremely self-critical man and destroyed everything he considered worthless junk. Therefore, almost none of it survived (in addition, all of his compositions before 1833 A.D. were destroyed in a forest fire (see Early years), so it is impossible to tell whether they were worthless junk, although the possibility remains that BraHams had started the fire on purpose because they were). His only piece of worthless junk to have ever been published is his Piano Trio No. 1 in B major, Op. 8. This work was written and published in 1854 A.D., but not until 1888 did BraHams realise that it was a worthless piece of junk. Since he could no longer destroy it, he revised it as thoroughly as he could instead and published the improved version in 1891.

edit Songs and other songs

BraHams' songs can be divided into two categories:

  • Original songs, published with an opus number
  • Arrangements of German folk songs, published without an opus number

BraHams loved songs and he wrote a great many of them in the course of his life. An example are his Vier ernste Gesänge ("Four Serious Songs") Op. 121, four drinking songs which BraHams began in 1856 A.D. under the false belief that he was intoxicated with alcohol, abandoned shortly afterwards (see Struggle for public recognition) and completed in 1896, when the signs of old age had manifested themselves to such a great extent that BraHams knew his end was near, because he didn't want the songs to remain unfinished (see Final years and death). He also published 3 volumes of German folk song arrangements. However, the motivation for these arrangements had not been a fondness for German folk music. On the contrary, BraHams hated German folk songs, and the only reason he wrote arrangements of them was because he had realised that it would be an extremely easy money earner, which is why he considered these arrangements unworthy of an entry in his opus catalogue. Still, a large number of unpublished German folk song arrangements have been discovered after BraHams' death, which the latter had apparently found too disgusting to be published even without an opus number.

edit Dance music

BraHams was an enthusiastic dancer, even though in his later years, BraHams being a rather small man, his beard often got in the way and he frequently tripped over or got stuck in it. In fact, these beard accidents, rather than annoying or discouraging BraHams, inspired him to write dance music himself and incorporate these accidents and his recovering from them into the music by interrupting lively dances with sudden slowed-down passages or through abrupt tempo changes in a dance. BraHams wrote 21 dances in total which are also known as "Hungarian Dances" because of the fact that they gained much popularity especially in Hungary.

edit Individual statements about BraHams

“I only remember writing nine symphonies.”
~ L. v. Beethoven on BraHams' Symphony No. 1
“There are some experiences in life which should not be demanded twice from any man, and one of them is listening to the BraHams Requiem.”
~ George Bernard Shaw on BraHams' A German Requiem
“BraHams' music is more boring than it sounds.”
~ Mark Twain on BraHams' music
“I’ve gone through BraHams pretty well by now, all I can say of him is that he’s a puny little dwarf with a rather narrow chest.”
~ Clara Schumann on BraHams' physique
“I hope that £$%^& will rot in hell.”
~ Robert Schumann on BraHams

edit Afterlife

When his posthumously written Symphony No. 5 in Q# major was discovered in 1903 A.D., BraHams was released from his grave and he published the symphony shortly afterwards as Op. 299. BraHams assigned it this opus number even though the last composition he had published in his life, the Eleven Choral Preludes for organ, carried the opus number 122. The reason for this is that BraHams, who had started to regain mobility a few weeks after his funeral, had been composing ever since to pass away the time, but had eaten his own compositions seeing as he had had no other means of nourishment due to his confinement to a coffin. Because BraHams did not want these works to be entirely forgotten, he decided to leave a gap in his opus catalogue in tribute to these compositions.

After that, BraHams, who had by now had enough of composing to last him for a very long time, settled down in a suburb of Limassol to enjoy a quiet afterlife in retirement. He spent most of his time swimming in the Mediterranean Sea pondering over the world, playing with children and engaging them in philosophical conversations, and hanging out at a small tavern called "The Red Hedgehog". BraHams was very fond of The Red Hedgehog and he frequently brought children with him to buy them alcoholic drinks, though he himself ordered only alcohol-free beverages, having grown accustomed to the feeling of soberness during the 6 years he had been locked in a coffin.

As the years passed, BraHams slowly lost his motivation for his regular outdoor activities and he spent more and more time inside The Red Hedgehog, soon more time than anywhere else. In the tavern, he mostly sat on his bench in total solitude and silence, for BraHams wasn't interested in talking to anyone except children, and the children he met on the street or in playgrounds rarely visited him of their own accord. Often, BraHams even stayed overnight in The Red Hedgehog, seeing as he would return there on the next day anyway and he didn't want to bother to go home just to take a nap.

In 1935, BraHams stopped leaving The Red Hedgehog altogether. He became so phlegmatic that he wouldn't even eat or drink anymore except drinking socially, and since his only visitor now was an 8-year-old boy who dropped in every couple of days to talk about the impermanence of life, this was negligible. When this boy, whose name BraHams neither knew nor cared about, suddenly stopped coming after a few months, BraHams realised that the last person in this world seemed to have finally lost their interest in him, and his morale sank so low that he didn't even finish his glass of water, seeing as it was already half-empty, but simply sat on his bench and stared expressionlessly into the air. BraHams hasn't talked to anyone, or indeed, moved at all ever since, and the glass of water still stands on the table today, unpaid-for, and as half-full or half-empty as it was 81 years ago when BraHams uttered his last words, "see you later, dude", to the boy whose name he would never know.

Decomposed German Composers
Johann Sebastian Bach | Ludwig van Beethoven | Johannes Brahms | Paul Hindemith | Felix Mendelssohn | Max Reger | Robert Schumann | Karlheinz Stockhausen the Turd | Richard Strauss | Richard Wagner
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