Ludwig van Beethoven

Mathias Botho

Join us to hear the first concert in The Philadelphia Orchestra’s "Music of Vienna" series, recorded live this past January at Verizon Hall. Pianist Jan Lisiecki, an audience favorite at only 20 years old, will be the soloist in Beethoven’s Piano Concerto No. 4.

Discovering Beethoven?

Mar 2, 2016

On Discoveries from the Fleisher Collection, Saturday, March 5th, 5 to 6 pm... It's a composer we’ve barely touched on in Discoveries from the Fleisher Collection, and with good reason. Beethoven isn’t a discovery to us (although, thankfully, people new to classical music discover him all the time).

Mention the music of Vienna, and some of us automatically think of a waltz.  But as WRTI’s Susan Lewis reports, the city was a musical magnet for composers, especially from the late 18th century through the 19th and beyond.


The Heiligenstadt Testament, a letter and directive written by Beethoven to his brothers in October, 1802, is an important missive, opened after the composer's death in 1827.

Ludwig van Beethoven’s "Les Adieux" or "The Farewell" sonata (Piano Sonata No. 26) is considered the composer's most significant work from the period between 1809 - 1810. It was a time when the Napoleonic Wars continued to bring upheaval to Beethoven’s adopted city of Vienna, the surrounding region, and beyond.

All composers have obsessions. For John Adams, a composer who decidedly broke with the past, that obsession is Beethoven, as heard in the new album Absolute Jest.

Every great piece of music has a story behind it. Telling those stories and performing those works has become an all-consuming career and a popular concert format for pianist Jeffery Siegel.  WRTI’s Susan Lewis has more on Siegel's Keyboard Conversations.


Yannick Nezet-Seguin conducts works by Haydn, Beethoven, and Vaughan Williams on this Sunday's Philadelphia Orchestra in Concert re-broadcast - a live concert recording from March, 2015 at Verizon Hall.

You'll hear one of Haydn’s most ambitious essays, the Symphony No. 92, known as the “Oxford” because he conducted a performance at the illustrious University in July 1791, when he was awarded an honorary Doctor of Music.

Join us on Sunday, September 13th at 1 pm for a re-broadcast from the final week of The Philadelphia Orchestra’s January 2015 St. Petersburg Festival, celebrating the great master of the third generation, Dmitri Shostakovich. Like Tchaikovsky before him, Shostakovich visited Philadelphia just once, but his connections to the Orchestra were unmatched by any other American ensemble. Of his 15 symphonies, seven received their first U.S. performance by the Philadelphians.

If ever there was a musician whose battle cry was “freedom” it was Ludwig van Beethoven. His Leonore Overture No. 3 relates the heroic conviction of a woman to free her husband from certain doom. The Piano Concerto No. 2 was composed for his own astonishing virtuoso technique. And the Symphony No. 5 has become so much more than a symphony – its famous first four notes have been turned into a Morse code phrase for "victory." Its propulsive energy and journey escalate towards a finale that has long transcended the concert hall and given hope to oppressed people everywhere.

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