Jan Caeyers is a conductor and musicologist. One of Europe's preeminent experts on Beethoven, he is the music director of the Beethoven orchestra Le Concert Olympique and a member of the Department of Musicology at KU Leuven.
Among the books about the legend . . . in this anniversary year, the most substantial is Jan Caeyers's Beethoven: A Life, a magisterial account, rich in archival findings, translated with revisions from the German edition of 2009. Books of the Year 2020 * Times Literary Supplement * Beethoven, A Life continues the journey towards a more complex and nuanced picture of the great composer. . . . Caeyers seeks to unravel the networks that influenced Beethoven's career, to paint portraits of those who supported him, and to outline the many interests that were at play in forming Beethoven both as a man and an artist. . . . The result is a very readable book that, as a byproduct, offers a generous supply of scene-setting detail. This ranges from life in Vienna in the early 19th century to the grinding economic impact of the French revolution and its aftermath, and even the bathing customs in Bohemian spa towns. * Financial Times *