Beethoven Unleashed - Why Beethoven? [Composer Of The Week]

Episodes

EpisodeTitleFirst
Broadcast
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01Beethoven Today20200113

Donald Macleod launches his year-long focus on Beethoven by asking conductor Marin Alsop and historian Simon Schama why Beethoven's life and work still matter today.

All through 2020, as part of Radio 3's Beethoven Unleashed season, Donald Macleod takes an unprecedented deep dive into the compelling story and extraordinary music of Ludwig van Beethoven. In this uniquely ambitious series, told across 125 episodes of Composer of the Week, Donald puts us inside Beethoven’s world and explores his hopes, struggles and perseverance in all the colourful detail this amazing narrative deserves. Alongside this in-depth biography, Donald will also be meeting and talking to Beethoven enthusiasts and experts from across the world to discover how his music continues to speak to us in the twenty-first century. Through story and sound, the series builds into a vivid new portrait of this composer, born 250 years ago this year, who made art that changed how people saw themselves and understood the world.

Bagatelle in A minor (Fur Elise), WoO 59
Lang Lang, piano

String Quartet No 10, Op 74 (Harp) (3rd movement)
Artemis Quartet

Symphony No 3 in E flat major (Eroica) (3rd movement)
Gewandhausorchester Leipzig
Riccardo Chailly, conductor

Grosse Fuge, Op 133
Takacs Quartet

Symphony No 5 in C minor (1st and 2nd movements)
Vienna Philharmonic
Simon Rattle, conductor

Produced by Martin Williams for BBC Wales

Conductor Marin Alsop and historian Simon Schama tell us why Beethoven matters today.

Donald Macleod offers a weekly guide to composers and their music.

02Struggle20200114

Continuing his conversation with the conductor Marin Alsop and historian Simon Schama, Donald Macleod asks about the centrality of the notion of struggle in relation to Beethoven’s life and work.

All through 2020, as part of Radio 3's Beethoven Unleashed season, Donald Macleod takes an unprecedented deep dive into the compelling story and extraordinary music of Ludwig van Beethoven. In this uniquely ambitious series, told across 125 episodes of Composer of the Week, Donald puts us inside Beethoven’s world and explores his hopes, struggles and perseverance in all the colourful detail this amazing narrative deserves. Alongside this in-depth biography, Donald will also be meeting and talking to Beethoven enthusiasts and experts from across the world to discover how his music continues to speak to us in the twenty-first century. Through story and sound, the series builds into a vivid new portrait of this composer, born 250 years ago this year, who made art that changed how people saw themselves and understood the world.

Symphony No 8 in F major, Op 93 (2nd movement)
Vienna Philharmonic
Simon Rattle, conductor

Sonata in A major, Op 30 No 1 for violin and piano
Gidon Kremer, violin
Martha Argerich, piano

Leonore Overture No 3
Berlin Philharmonic
Herbert von Karajan, conductor

Piano Sonata No 27 in E minor, Op 90 (2nd movement)
Andras Schiff, piano

Piano Concerto No 4 in G major, Op 58 (2nd movement)
Mitsuko Uchida, piano
Berlin Philharmonic
Simon Rattle, conductor

Produced by Martin Williams for BBC Wales

Marin Alsop and Simon Schama discuss Beethoven and the notion of struggle.

Donald Macleod offers a weekly guide to composers and their music.

03Beethoven's World20200115

One of the things that makes Beethoven so appealing is that he was a man of his times. And what times they were – times of extraordinary revolution and turmoil. Donald Macleod continues his conversation with the conductor Marin Alsop and historian Simon Schama by asking them about the political and social backdrop to Beethoven’s life and work.

All through 2020, Donald Macleod takes an unprecedented deep dive into the compelling story and extraordinary music of Ludwig van Beethoven. In this uniquely ambitious series, told across 125 episodes of Composer of the Week, Donald puts us inside Beethoven’s world and explores his hopes, struggles and perseverance in all the colourful detail this amazing narrative deserves. Alongside this in-depth biography, Donald will also be meeting and talking to Beethoven enthusiasts and experts from across the world to discover how his music continues to speak to us in the twenty-first century. Through story and sound, the series builds into a vivid new portrait of this composer, born 250 years ago this year, who made art that changed how people saw themselves and understood the world.

Piano Sonata No 13 in E flat major, Op 27 No 1 (2nd movement)
Paul Lewis, piano

Symphony No 3 in E flat major (Eroica), Op 55 (2nd movement)
New York Philharmonic Orchestra
Leonard Bernstein, conductor

The Creatures of Prometheus: Overture
Orpheus Chamber Orchestra

Fidelio: Act II finale
Arnold Schoenberg Choir
Berlin Philharmonic
Simon Rattle, conductor

Symphony No 4 in B flat major, Op 60 (1st movement)
London Symphony Orchestra
Bernard Haitink, conductor

Produced by Martin Williams for BBC Wales

Marin Alsop and Simon Schama join Donald Macleod to discuss Beethoven\u2019s world.

Donald Macleod offers a weekly guide to composers and their music.

04Romance and Enlightenment20200116

Continuing his conversation with the conductor Marin Alsop and the historian Simon Schama, Donald Macleod asks about Beethoven’s perspective on the ideas of the enlightenment and the expression of those ideas in his challenging assertion of the primacy of the Artist.

All through 2020, Donald Macleod takes an unprecedented deep dive into the compelling story and extraordinary music of Ludwig van Beethoven. In this uniquely ambitious series, told across 125 episodes of Composer of the Week, Donald puts us inside Beethoven’s world and explores his hopes, struggles and perseverance in all the colourful detail this amazing narrative deserves. Alongside this in-depth biography, Donald will also be meeting and talking to Beethoven enthusiasts and experts from across the world to discover how his music continues to speak to us in the twenty-first century. Through story and sound, the series builds into a vivid new portrait of this composer, born 250 years ago this year, who made art that changed how people saw themselves and understood the world.

Piano Sonata No 14 (Moonlight), Op 27 No 2 (1st movement)
Glenn Gould, piano

String Quartet in F minor, Op 95 (1st movement)
Hagen Quartet

Egmont Overture, Op 84
London Symphony Orchestra
Wyn Morris, conductor

Symphony No 9 in D major (Choral), Op 125 (IVa. Presto)
Norman Scott, bass
Martina Arroyo, soprano
Nicholas Di Virgilio, tenor
Regina Sarfaty, mezzo-soprano
The Juilliard Chorus
New York Philharmonic Orchestra
Leonard Bernstein, conductor

Symphony No 9 in D major (Choral), Op 125 (IVb. Finale)
Kurt Streit, tenor
Thomas Hampson, baritone
Barbara Bonney, soprano
Birgit Remmert , mezzo-soprano
City of Birmingham Symphony Chorus
Vienna Philharmonic Orchestra
Simon Rattle, conductor

Produced by Martin Williams for BBC Wales

Marin Alsop and Simon Schama join Donald Macleod to discuss Beethoven\u2019s ideals.

Donald Macleod offers a weekly guide to composers and their music.

05Late Style20200117

Marin Alsop and Simon Schama join Donald Macleod to discuss the character and work of Beethoven in the final period of his life.

All through 2020, Donald Macleod takes an unprecedented deep dive into the compelling story and extraordinary music of Ludwig van Beethoven. In this uniquely ambitious series, told across 125 episodes of Composer of the Week, Donald puts us inside Beethoven’s world and explores his hopes, struggles and perseverance in all the colourful detail this amazing narrative deserves. Alongside this in-depth biography, Donald will also be meeting and talking to Beethoven enthusiasts and experts from across the world to discover how his music continues to speak to us in the twenty-first century. Through story and sound, the series builds into a vivid new portrait of this composer, born 250 years ago this year, who made art that changed how people saw themselves and understood the world.

String Quartet in A minor, Op 132 (5th movement)
Busch Quartet

String Quartet in E flat major, Op 127 (1st movement)
Alban Berg Quartet

Bagatelle in E flat major, Op 126 No 6
Alfred Brendel, piano

Mass in D major (Missa Solemnis), Op 123 (Kyrie)
Collegium Vocale Gent
Orchestre des Champs-Elysees
Philippe Herreweghe, conductor

Coriolan Overture, Op 62
Berlin Philharmonic Orchestra
Herbert von Karajan, conductor

String Quartet in B flat major, Op 130 (5th movement)
Danish String Quartet

Produced by Martin Williams for BBC Wales

Marin Alsop and Simon Schama join Donald Macleod to discuss Beethoven's final years.

Donald Macleod offers a weekly guide to composers and their music.