CollectionsBeethoven
IN THE NEWS

Beethoven

FEATURED ARTICLES
NEWS
December 17, 1993 | by Bill Wedo, Daily News Staff Writer
For a movie industry in which the flavors of the month are family entertainment and sequels, "Beethoven's 2nd" is a dream come true. Kids and dogs. From a previous hit movie. All over the screen. The good news is that, like the original "Beethoven," the sequel establishes a workable comfort zone for all ages. There's craftmanship involved in making a good family film - that is, one that keeps kids in their seats and adults from nodding off. Anyone can make bad ones - just ask Disney, which churned them out through the '70s.
NEWS
January 6, 1995 | by Gary Thompson, Daily News Movie Critic
"Immortal Beloved" is a movie about Beethoven's business manager. This may surprise those of you who'd been anticipating a bio of the great composer, and perhaps another virtuoso performance from leading man Gary Oldman as Ludwig von. Adjust your expectations. In its attempt to probe the mystery surrounding some of the composer's last writings, "Immortal Beloved" turns into a suspense thriller that follows Beethoven's longtime secretary Anton Schindler (Jeroen Krabbe) in his quest to discover the identity of the woman known in Beethoven's letters as "immortal beloved," to whom the composer left a portion of his estate.
ENTERTAINMENT
October 5, 1998 | By Daniel Webster, INQUIRER MUSIC CRITIC
For Karl Middleman, context is almost everything. The conductor of the Philadelphia Classical Symphony uses his concerts to explain the settings, the composer's life and times, and the plan behind the music. The orchestra plays examples to illustrate all that, and the stage is fronted by artwork to help the audience understand the period. On Saturday, Middleman took on Beethoven, mixing 100 minutes of music with 60 of commentary. Concerts were marathons in Beethoven's day, and the search for authenticity now may require programs of comparable length.
NEWS
October 11, 1989 | By Daniel Webster, Inquirer Music Critic
Because Beethoven returned again and again to a kind of music - piano sonatas, string quartets, trios - one or two of each genre tend to stand for the whole catalog. Audiences hear the same three piano sonatas, and the same two violin sonatas, from those who hope to be known as Beethoven performers without having to understand the whole musical landscape. In their Beethoven recital last night at the Port of History Museum, pianist Peter Serkin and violinist Young Uck Kim played some of the other violin sonatas, the relatively early ones that show Beethoven searching, testing, and growing.
ENTERTAINMENT
September 18, 1993 | By Lesley Valdes, INQUIRER MUSIC CRITIC
Beethoven was a dangerous man. Listen carefully to those Saturnian cellos and basses that initiate the finale of the Ninth Symphony. Listen to the way they soberly, somberly, reluctantly, edge us near, then veer away from, before ultimately plunging us forward into the symphony's unexpected chorus. Ferocious joy. Ferocious destruction is in this music, where the brass as often puncture as punctuate declarations of hope and aspiration. Beethoven was demonic, and no telling what worlds he could have overturned given a few more symphonies.
ENTERTAINMENT
December 11, 1988 | By Daniel Webster, Inquirer Music Critic
The Philadelphia Orchestra's biggest recording project has just been completed. The release, on EMI, encompasses Beethoven's nine symphonies, plus three of his overtures on six discs in a box. They represent performances and recordings between October 1985 and February 1988 and much more besides. They stand to Riccardo Muti as a summary of the transformation he has effected with this orchestra since he became music director in 1980. A Beethoven set may seem an unlikely choice for a conductor so deeply involved with Italian opera, but Muti has consistently presented himself as a man with wide enthusiasm and knowledge.
ENTERTAINMENT
May 4, 1996 | By Peter Dobrin, INQUIRER STAFF WRITER
The way Wolfgang Sawallisch was conducting, you might have thought that was Haydn on the program. But it was Beethoven, early Beethoven, and Sawallisch made his opinion clear that the composer's Symphony No. 1 in C major, Op. 21 has more in common with Haydn's symphonies than do any of Beethoven's written after his Second. With the Philadelphia Orchestra Thursday night at the Academy of Music, Sawallisch molded a Symphony No. 1 that was controlled, of medium tempo and, in every way, moderate.
NEWS
October 18, 2006 | By David Patrick Stearns INQUIRER MUSIC CRITIC
No need for special Beethoven anniversaries: The classical music world is a continuing celebration of this pivotal composer, one who has been hugely stimulating of late. Christoph Eschenbach, Osmo V?nsk?, and especially Bernard Haitink have found new revelations in the symphonies, and fine piano sonata recordings are being made by Andr?s Schiff (ECM), Paul Lewis (Harmonia Mundi), and Fran?ois-Fr?d?ric Guy (Naive). On the evidence of Monday's Kimmel Center concert, the Chamber Orchestra of Philadelphia belongs in that august food chain.
NEWS
March 1, 2002 | By Daniel Webster FOR THE INQUIRER
Any composer who sets out to write a string quartet must make an accommodation with Beethoven. In 16 quartets, Beethoven ascended from virtuosity to eminence to transcendence. At the end, there seemed little room for improvement. Most composers make their Beethoven adjustments privately. But Ralph Shapey, the 81-year-old who has resisted easy accommodation to any form or dogma, is more public. The composer's Quartet No. 10 was played for the first time Wednesday by the Juilliard Quartet at the Kimmel Center's Perelman Theater, and he subtitled his three-movement work: "Ludwig and I. Es muss sein.
ENTERTAINMENT
March 30, 1986 | By Daniel Webster, Inquirer Music Critic
The Beethoven symphonies have long been regarded by conductors and audiences as the first works truly appropriate to the modern orchestra. Beethoven was a romantic, wrote big works and heard big sonorities, and orchestras have adopted him as their own, playing the later symphonies with forces that could also play Bruckner. The odd thing is that Beethoven's orchestras in Vienna and Leipzig were composed of a dozen violins, two desks of violas and cellos and pairs of winds. Those numbers suggest the strings must have been habitually overbalanced, by our standards, and the total sonority much more transparent.
1 | 2 | 3 | 4 | 5 | Next »
ARTICLES BY DATE
NEWS
January 22, 2016 | David Patrick Stearns, Music Critic
In nearly every genre, Ludwig van Beethoven wrote some grand but close to unperformable masterpieces - such as his opera, Fidelio . Despite being revised, retitled, and decked with four different overtures, Beethoven's brilliant operatic "shipwreck" (as the composer called it) defies easy performance solutions. "You'll never get your arms around it," star conductor Simon Rattle once said after multiple encounters. Yet Grand Harmonie, a group of young performers doing the piece at 7:30 p.m. Saturday at Princeton's Richardson Auditorium, is attempting to do so with instruments authentic to Beethoven's time, starting with what's often the sticking point: French horns.
ENTERTAINMENT
January 16, 2016 | By David Patrick Stearns, STAFF MUSIC CRITIC
Some programs in the Philadelphia Orchestra's three-week Music of Vienna Festival could have happened anywhere in the season. But Wednesday night's program at the Kimmel Center was much more adventurous than that. With engaging recklessness, the concert was designed to show Vienna as a center for music both great and silly. Music director Yannick Nézet-Séguin's program was bookended by waltz king Johann Strauss, with Beethoven's Piano Concerto No. 4 and two piggyback works: Gustav Mahler's orchestral transcription of Beethoven's String Quartet No. 11 Op. 95 ("Serioso")
ENTERTAINMENT
January 13, 2016 | By David Patrick Stearns, STAFF MUSIC CRITIC
Individual charisma can be regarded suspiciously in chamber music, because the medium is so much about cooperation. Thus, the Orion Quartet concert Sunday with Philadelphia Orchestra oboist Richard Woodhams packed the Kimmel Center's Perelman Theater with promises that the excitement would arise from integrity rather than superficialities. The program was as serious as they get: Leon Kirchner's String Quartet No. 1 and Beethoven's mighty String Quartet in E-flat Op. 127 . The one lighter spot positively glimmered: Mozart's Oboe Quartet K 370 , not the composer's most significant piece of chamber music, but who cares?
NEWS
January 8, 2016 | By David Patrick Stearns, STAFF MUSIC CRITIC
Not until encountering Pierre Boulez in a live performance could you know what was meant by a fire-drill concert. The occasion was the conductor/composer's 1986 return to the New York Philharmonic, which he directed from 1971 to '77 with repertoire that modernists loved and the traditional subscription audience did not. Almost on cue with Boulez's own Pli Selon Pli , the audience began departing in droves. And more droves. I've never seen anything like it before or since (and shudder to think what his 1973 Philadelphia Orchestra guest date must have been like)
NEWS
December 20, 2015
What's happening in Pittsburgh? Some awfully fine orchestral playing, judging by the sounds of the Pittsburgh Symphony's latest disc, Beethoven's Fifth and Seventh Symphonies. This is the symphonic pairing on which conductors from Christian Thielemann to Gustavo Dudamel have made their names, but this beautifully recorded SACD on the Reference label is not to be outclassed. Music director Manfred Honeck draws powerhouse performances, especially of No. 5, forging an interpretation that has swift classical-era tempos but treats the famous opening motto with a gravity steeped in romantic-era performance practice.
ENTERTAINMENT
November 12, 2015 | By Peter Dobrin, Inquirer Music Critic
Three decades after rising to public attention, Beethoven's metronome markings still have a tantalizing news value. Dirk Brossé brought up the issue at Monday night's Chamber Orchestra of Philadelphia concert at the Perelman Theater by telling the audience he would adhere to Beethoven's metronomic wishes in the Symphony No. 2 , which he said might not be what we are used to hearing. It's probably true that, with some notable exceptions, conductors and the orchestras they led slowed down quite a bit in the 20th century.
ENTERTAINMENT
August 19, 2015 | By David Patrick Stearns, Inquirer Music Critic
Philadelphia Orchestra associate conductors are like U.S. vice presidents: They have huge exposure, a bit of dirty work to do, and ascend to the boss' job only in dire circumstances. Nonetheless, Philadelphia's Cristian Macelaru (once associate conductor - new title, "conductor-in-residence") is making a more-than-vice-presidential career for himself. Last weekend, it landed him, on his own artistic steam, at New York's Mostly Mozart Festival, which gives significant platforms to conductors consolidating major careers, including the likes of Osmo Vänskä, Edward Gardner, and Yannick Nézet-Séguin.
ENTERTAINMENT
July 28, 2015 | By David Patrick Stearns, Inquirer Music Critic
In the more populist realm of the Mann Center for the Performing Arts, the Philadelphia Orchestra got back to its core purpose - playing an all-Beethoven concert, as opposed to accompanying a Lord of the Rings movie. The combination of good weather and a Saturday night slot (usually, it's week nights) showed how true classical concerts, even ones without cannons and fireworks, do what skeptics suspect isn't possible. Great music from another century not only sells, it excites, and not just the listeners who know it well.
NEWS
July 17, 2015 | By Peter Dobrin, Inquirer Music Critic
If audiences in New England end up hearing anything like Tuesday night's recital at the Curtis Institute of Music, they will be struck by the meticulous approach of violinist Bella Hristova and pianist Steven Lin. The two young Curtis grads tried out their program amid the comforts of home - Field Concert Hall - before taking it on the road. The concert, strung loosely along the idea that folk tunes can and do seep into classical, was built to announce the virtues of technical solidity.
1 | 2 | 3 | 4 | 5 | Next »
|
|
|
|
|