Friday, November 11, 2011

The Worst News Imaginable…

What would that be for you? For Ludwig van Beethoven it was confirmation that his hearing, "the one sense which should have been more perfect in me than in others, a sense which I once possessed in highest perfection" was now eroding. How could this supreme master of sound be reduced to shouting "speak louder for I am deaf" and still have the respect of those around him?

In his Heiligenstadt Testament, Beethoven agonized about his self-exile from humanity and the misunderstandings of those who perceive him as stubborn, haughty or misanthropic. The searing nature of this confession is so personal and discouraging that some experts thought of it as a first draft of a suicide note to those that would have found him. As reduced as Beethoven was by his illness he did find a way out that was more positive for humanity, music.

Could Beethoven compose with such weighty matters depressing him? The answer is yes, his dear art and its alchemy turned base anger and frustration into art. Hear Beethoven's unique piano sonata in d minor "the Tempest" this Sunday afternoon at 5 on the Piano. Along with a sterling performance, we will give a listen to several musicians and their approach to this masterwork.

host, Randy Anderson

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