A Piece of Total Silliness – answers


Beethoven  was in Britain (1 – Benjamin Britten), and decided to go out to the shops. His first stop was an estate agent’s. Entering, he asked, in his bad English: ‘Please – do you stock hausen?’ (2 – Karlheinz Stockhausen) The agent looked at him, impressed that the great man was in his shop,  and turned to his female assistant.  ‘Do we have a palace, Trina?’ (3 – Palestrina) ‘No no,’ Beethoven insisted quickly. ‘I need a cage (4 – John Cage) for my bird (5 – William Byrd). I don’t want it to be eaten by a wolf (6 – Hugo Wolf).’ Less impressed, the estate agent sent him next door, to the pet-shop. Beethoven explained to the manager there (Jan – a Czech) (7 – Leoš Janáček) what he wanted. ‘Ah yes – I think we have just the thing,’ said Jan. He looked around to where a young man was lounging behind the counter. ‘Martin – you!’ (8 – Bohuslav Martinů) he barked at the unfortunate lounger. ‘Go and fetch a large cage, with a big handle (9 – George Frideric Handel).’ While Martin did just what he was told, Beethoven looked around and noticed a little dog in the corner. ‘I like him,’ he told Jan, ‘but does he often bark?’ (10 – Jacques Offenbach) ‘No, he’s the sort of dog that doesn’t bark (11 – Johann Sebastian Bach – or various other Bachs) a lot,’ replied Jan. ‘Good,’ said Beethoven; ”then maybe I’ll buy him. I haf a cat – and I couldn’t have a dog upsetting de pussy (12 – Claude Debussy). It’s bad enough that I coup her in (13 – Francois -or Louis – Couperin) my small flat all day’ So Beethoven left the shop with the cage, and the dog trotting at his heels; he consulted his list (14 – Franz Liszt) and went into a cobbler’s. ‘Are you the shoe-man?’ (15 – Robert Schumann) he asked the man at the counter. The man didn’t reply, but instead  called into the back of the shop,’someone about his shoe, Bert!’ (16 – Franz Schubert) Bert came hurrying out. ‘How can I help you, sir?’ he asked. ‘It’s my laces – they’re all ravelled,’ (17 – Maurice Ravel) said Beethoven sadly ‘ what a mess I in!’ (18 – Olivier Messiaen)  Bert tactfully ignored his client’s bad English, and looked at the laces. ‘You’re going to have to use the most art (19 – Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart) you have,’ said Beethoven. ‘Hmm…’ mused Bert, ‘I think I’ll have to ask my assistant. Where’s he hid’n? (20 – Franz Josef Haydn) Honestly,’ he confided in Beethoven,’it’s impossible to get good service these days. .’E’s probably out shoppin’ (21 – Frederic Chopin) for his scarlet tea (22- Domenico – or Alessandro – Scarlatti) or something weird like that. I told him never to do that ; you can tell a man (23 – Georg Philipp Telemann) something till you’re blue in the face – it won’t help you.’ Beethoven sympathised. ‘Ver de (24 – Giuseppe Verdi) blazes is the man?’ he asked. ‘These people – zey have no sense of duty-ugh!’  (25 – Henri Dutilleux) Just then, the assistant came running in. ‘Sorry,’ he gasped . ‘You’re a block (26 – Ernest Bloch)-head, that’s what you are,’ thundered Bert. He turned back to Beethoven. ‘I’m not really a cobbler , anyway;  I’d far rather be a purse-seller (27 – Henry Purcell), but there’s no money in it,’ he moaned. ‘To be frank, (28 – César Frank) my boys have stolen all my money – that they borrowed in (29 – Alexander Borodin) trust; my saint sons,(30 – Charles-Camille Saint-Saëns) I call them. Humph.’ All this gloom was getting too much for Beethoven. He stomped off,  intending to go to the barber’s (31 – Samuel Barber); but finding himself out ooutside a clothes-shop,  he looked around furtively and then went in. He went up to the unattended counter. ‘Er – please?’ he asked in a high, embarassed voice. ‘I need some ladies’ underwear.’ A voice came from the back: ‘what size bra, Ms…’ (32 – Johannes Brahms) The owner of the voice came out into the shop, and stopped dead. ‘Mr. Beethoven!’ he exclaimed. ‘What an honour to have you here – I adore your music!’ Beethoven looked panic-struck. ‘Thank you, thank you,’he gabbled hurriedly. ‘And of course I was just joking about the ladies’ underwear – bar-talk, (33 – Béla Bartók) you know, hahaha. What I really want is something from that rack, Man Enough (34 – Sergei Rachmaninov) clothes; oh, and some really stiff gloves – Hinder-Mitts. (35 – Paul Hindemith) For strong men only.’ ‘Nahturallee, sir,’ replied the assistant in his posh voice, trying to impress. ‘And cod I (36 – Zoltán Kodály) help sir with anything else?’ ‘No thank you,’ said Beethoven. ”Maybe you could just send it to me?’ ‘Most certainly, sir – what is the address?’ ‘4A (37 – Gabriel Fauré) Brook (38 – Max Bruch) Street. You know, by the brook near (39 – Anton Bruckner) here. And mind that your man doesn’t tip it (40 – Michael Tippett) over the bridge (41 – Frank Bridge) before he gets it to me, hahaha.’ And with that, Beethoven was gone…

How well did you do?

1-10: maybe try again?
10-20: Promising
20-30: Good
30-40: Excellent
41: Perfect!!
More than 41: Where did you find the extra ones that we didn’t notice ourselves??