Join the Royal Philharmonic Orchestra, John Suchet and friends on a journey through the powerful and inspirational world of ‘Beethoven: The Revolutionary’.

Beethoven may be a byword for classical music in 2022, but 250 years ago his compositions and politics, deeply intertwined, burst into the world and changed music forever. In a world rocked by revolution in America and France, Beethoven fervently believed in freedom and a more democratic future for all and he used the power of his music to convey not just emotions, but political ideas as well.

‘I am thrilled to be presenting the evening concerts in this series with the Royal Philharmonic Orchestra. No single word sums up Beethoven – the individual and his music – better than ‘revolutionary’. First of all, he was a revolutionary in ideas. Beethoven believed deeply in the inalienable right of human beings to live freely and in harmony – Enlightenment ideals that were viewed with suspicion by the ruling class and the church.

‘In music, too, Beethoven was a revolutionary. He transformed every form in which he wrote. Nobody had started a symphony with two crashing chords, as he did in the ‘Eroica’. No one had begun a piano concerto with solo piano, as he did in Piano Concerto No.4. No one had begun a piano sonata with a huge minor chord, as he did in the ‘Pathétique’. And these transformations continued in string quartets, sonatas and every form he turned his hand to.

‘Beethoven’s music takes you by surprise at every turn, however well you know it. It is as fresh today as it was when he wrote it 200 years ago. That is his gift to us.’

John Suchet
Classic FM presenter, journalist and author of Beethoven – The Man Revealed

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