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Fur Elise for Guitar

Updated on September 1, 2011

Beethoven's "Fur Elise" Played on Classical Guitar

Beethoven's "Fur Elise" is one of the most popular pieces in the classical piano repertoire. Most piano students learn to play it as part of their training. As a guitarist who enjoys the piano, I love the transcription of Beethoven's music played on the classical guitar. In this video Eddit Blatt does a great job of performing the piece before a live audience. As for recordings, I highly recommend this CD by Ken Fackler.


Learning to play Beethoven's "Fur Elise" on the Guitar

The first thing you have to decide is whether you want to read "Fur Elise" using Tablature or standard musical notation. Tab is easier to read, but you will loss a lot of information (such as what key your are in, dynamic markings, etc). Here are the first few bars of the piece in Tab:

    pp
 Poco Moto ("A Little Motion")     V...........
    |   |   |        |   |    |    |   |   |    |   |   |
E-|---------12-11|12-11-12-7-10-8|-5---------5|-7-----0-4-7|
B-|--------------|---------------|---------5--|------------|
G-|--------------|---------------|-------5----|------------|
D-|--------------|---------------|-----7------|-----6------|
A-|--------------|---------------|---7--------|---7--------|
E-|--------------|---------------|-5----------|-0----------|

To learn to play Fur Elise on guitar here are two good free resources I recommend. This is the link to the Tab and here is the standard notation. Both can be helpful for the reasons I mentioned.

"Fur Elise" on Piano

Lastly, let me leave you with a recording of the piece on Piano! Here is Ivo Pogorelich playing live in Florence, Italy. As for recordings, I recommend this interpretation by the legendary Vladimir Ashkenazy.

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    • Ari Lamstein profile image
      Author

      Ari Lamstein 4 years ago from San Francisco, CA

      Thank you for the kind comments, Sara!

    • profile image

      sccanseco 4 years ago

      Another one to love! What a wonderful way to rediscover some beautiful classical pieces of music!

    • profile image

      Derdriu 5 years ago

      Ari Lamstein, What an endearing, enduring, excellent performance of the Beethoven piano class fur Elise! It transcribes beautifully to classical guitar. Your explanation of tab versus notation is elucidating and welcome.

      Thank you, voted up + all,

      Derdriu

    • suzettenaples profile image

      Suzette Walker 5 years ago from Taos, NM

      I love Fur Elise and have played it on the piano. I would like to learn to play the guitar some day, and this article is so helpful and informative.

    • ezhang profile image

      Edward Zhang 6 years ago from Bay Area, CA

      Fur Elise for the guitar, now that's new. I've also never heard of this happening. Very enlightening!

    • John Sarkis profile image

      John Sarkis 6 years ago from Los Angeles, CA

      Thanks Ari - I'm a pianist and composer, but I don't think I've ever heard Fur Elise played on the guitar before - you're never too old to learn!

    • Ari Lamstein profile image
      Author

      Ari Lamstein 6 years ago from San Francisco, CA

      Thank you so much for the comments!

    • Randy Godwin profile image

      Randy Godwin 6 years ago from Southern Georgia

      My very last piano recital piece! And later I adapted it to guitar.

    • agvulpes profile image

      Peter 6 years ago from Australia

      Beethoven is my favorite Classical Composer and Fur Elise is one of my Favorites. I did enjoy the Guitar version but I must say that I enjoyed it more on the Piano.

      Thank you for sharing this with us:-)