Ludwig van Beethoven: Egmont Overture, Op. 84;
Piano Concerto No. 4 in G major, Op. 58;
Symphony No. 7 in A major, Op. 92
Besides Haydn and Mozart, Ludwig van Beethoven is the third great master of the First Viennese School. The audience at this evening’s concert will experience the overwhelming power of his works.
In his play titled “Egmont”, Goethe wrote about the history of the Dutch War of Independence. While the play itself was only moderately successful at the time, it still managed to inspire Beethoven. The work he composed became one of the most famous of his 11 overtures. It differs from the rest in that it keeps to a free sonata form: the movements are not separate parts, but instead overlap each other. The Egmont Overture is Beethoven’s most heroic work, and remains a popular highlight of concert halls.
Piano Concerto No. 4 was the last piece in which the piano part at the debut concert was performed by Beethoven himself, and the first work that did away with the Mozartian tradition and began with a piano solo. At the Festival Orchestra’s concert, this concerto will be performed by a young South Korean piano prodigy, the 24-year-old Seong-Jin Cho. Although he has received multiple awards at several competitions since he was 14, he rose to worldwide fame after winning the XVII International Chopin Piano Competition in 2015. He plays Beethoven’s works with the same level of immersion, emotion and insight as he does Chopin’s and Mozart’s pieces.
At the debut of his Symphony No. 7, Beethoven confessed that he considers it one of his finest works. He composed the symphony in the Bohemian spa town of Teplice between 1811 and 1812, and dedicated it to one of his aristocrat friends. The symphony is characterised by the unique rhythm of its movements. The second movement (Allegretto) is often played at concerts on its own, while the entire work remains extremely popular around the world.