LUDWIG van BEETHOVEN
Ludwig van Beethoven was a German composer and pianist (1770-1827) who is universally considered to be one of the greatest composers of all time. He took music in an entirely new direction and is considered to have been the most crucial figure in the transition from the Classical to the Romantic eras in Western classical music.
Beethoven wrote nine symphonies, nine concertos, and a large number of other orchestral music, ranging from overtures and incidental music for theatrical productions to other miscellaneous works. His hearing began to deteriorate in the late 1790s, yet he continued to compose, conduct, and perform, even after becoming completely deaf! His life story and the incredible music he composed is an inspiring example of the power of the creative spirit.
The Sonata No. 14, the famous "Moonlight" sonata, is one of Beethoven's most popular sonatas. It was written in 1801 and dedicated to his student, 17-year-old Countess Giulietta Guicciardi, with whom Beethoven supposedly was in love. The relationship never worked out. Presented here is the third movement which is filled with a ferocious power.
Written in 1804-08, the fifth symphony is one of the best-known works in classical music. The four-note opening phrase (dit dit dit dah), is widely known and has appeared frequently in popular culture, from disco to rock and roll, to appearances in film and television. But there is more, so muich more to this symphony! Perhaps the coolest work in all classical music! Presented here is the first movement.