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His advances in musical language, such as extreme chromaticism and quickly shifting tonal centres, greatly influenced the development of classical music.
Beethoven became a major inspiration, and Wagner wrote a piano transcription of the 9th Symphony.
At this period Wagner entertained ambitions as a playwright.
His first creative effort, listed in the Wagner-Werk-Verzeichnis (the standard listing of Wagner's works) as WWV 1, was a tragedy called Leubald.
Begun when he was in school in 1826, the play was strongly influenced by Shakespeare and Goethe.
Wagner was determined to set it to music, and persuaded his family to allow him music lessons.Wagner had his own opera house built, the Bayreuth Festspielhaus, which embodied many novel design features.