Tag Archives: Beethoven

The Invention of Jazz

The conventional view is that jazz is an American art form that originated in African-American communities of New Orleans. It was a derivative of blues and ragtime. Over time it split into many branches. When one thinks of the original New Orleans version, names like King Oliver (1881-1938), Jelly Roll Morton (1890-1940), and Louis Armstrong…


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Why is Beethoven Greater Than Reicha?

I recently attended a performance of one of Antonin Reicha’s wind quintets – there are 24 of them. The number of the one I heard was not given. It was a competent work devoid of genius. Reicha (1770-1836) was born the same year as Beethoven and went to the same high school. They became friends….


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San Francisco Symphony Plays Haydn, Sibelius, and Beethoven

On Thursday evening, September 15, the  San Francisco  Symphony played Haydn’s Symphony # 69 for the first time in it’s long history. Its Music Director Michael Tilson Thomas conducted. The orchestra played the short work with a lush sound better suited to the symphonic works of the succeeding century. The concluding movement marked presto was…


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Cleveland Orchestra Plays Beethoven and Shostakovich in Miami

Not surprisingly the Cleveland Orchestra spends part of the winter in Miami. On Saturday evening February 28 the band, led by its Music Director Franz Welser-Möst, played Beethoven’s 5th Symphony followed after the intermission by Shostakovich’s 10th Symphony. The venue was the Knight Concert Hall. They had played the same composers’ 3rd and 6th symphonies…


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Beethoven in Santa Fe

On Thursday evening August 21 the Santa Fe Chamber Music Festival presented and all Beethoven program at the Lensic Performing Arts Center. The evening began with the last of Beethoven’s sonatas for cello and piano – the 5th in D Op 102, #2. Written in 1815 along with the 4th sonata, it was dedicated to…


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All Five

The Lubbock Symphony Orchestra will open its season next month with a program unique in my experience. The brilliant young pianist Adam Golka will perform all five Beethoven piano concertos. Numbers 2, 3, and 4 will be played on Friday September 23. Numbers 1 and 5 will follow the next evening. The orchestra will be conducted by Golka’s older brother Tomasz…


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Why Beethoven is so Great

There’s nothing I can say about Beethoven that will in any way affect his Olympian stature other than to echo Verdi’s declaration that we must all bow before him. But if you want to see just how visceral his connection to all humanity is look at the video below. [youtube=http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=0REJ-lCGiKU&NR=1]


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