72 Posts
At the Center of the Musical Universe
Ludwig van Beethoven
Whether we like it or not, Ludwig van Beethoven was one of the greatest disruptive forces in the history of music. He was a revolutionary man who lived and worked in revolutionary and tumultuous times, and his music exerted tremendous
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Mechanical Beethoven
In a previous episode on the “Mechanical Mozart” I have introduced you to the mechanical instrument, most commonly associated with a clock, that plays music at regular time intervals. Unlike a conventional chiming clock, this device plays music selected automatically
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Muses and Musings
Beethoven and his “Klärchen”
Ludwig van Beethoven and Antonie Adamberger
At the tender age of 16, Antonie Adamberger was already one of the biggest stars on the Viennese theatrical stage. Tall, slender, gorgeous, and certainly highly talented, she gave her debut on New Year’s Day 1807 at the Burgtheater, and
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Beethoven in China: The Dark Years
The unprecedented suffering inflicted by the relentless and ruthless personality cult of Chairman Mao Zedong during the Cultural Revolution had a devastating effect on society and on music. Within China’s cultural and intellectual fabric Beethoven had become synonymous with everything
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Beethoven in China: The Beginnings
The Chinese Buddhist monk Li Shutong—also known by a variety of other names—was a master painter, dramatist, calligrapher, poet, and musician. Born in Tianjin and educated in Shanghai, he went to Japan in 1905 and studied at the Tokyo School
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Composers and their Poets: Beethoven II
Although he set the great poets such as Goethe, Beethoven set one poem by a German writer who was better known for his plays. In music, many of those plays were the basis for great operas: Wilhelm Tell became Rossini’s
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Composers and their Poets: Beethoven I
When we think of Beethoven (1770-1827), we think of his orchestral music – great symphonies that brought a century-old genre forward. By the end, it wasn’t enough to have a large orchestra, he also had to have a chorus as
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Playing the Beethoven Piano Sonatas
Frequently referred to as the ‘New Testament’ of piano music (Bach’s ‘Well-Tempered Clavier’ being the ‘Old Testament’), Beethoven’s 32 Piano Sonatas rank amongst the high Himalayan peaks of the pianist’s repertoire. The primary appeal of these pieces, aside from the
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