A Concert for the Ages 

On December 22, 1808, Ludwig van Beethoven debuted two symphonies (including perhaps his most famous, The Fifth Symphony), a piano concerto, and a choral piece, plus a few other favorites in a four-hour long benefit concert at the Theater-an-der-Wien, one of Vienna’s grandest theaters.  

The concert was…not a success. From frigid temperatures to ill-rehearsed pieces to contentious relationships between Beethoven and the musicians, the concert was certainly one to remember, but maybe not for the reasons a composer would want!  

Even though the concert may not have gone to plan, Beethoven did make a cash profit—his only of the entire year. Many composers were not revered in their time and only in their later years or even posthumously, were they appreciated and acknowledged for their talent. 

Beethoven is probably one of the most famous names in composing and if you’re interested in some of the reasons he is so highly regarded, here are some books to learn more: 

Beethoven: A Life by Jan Caeyers 

The Great Composers: The Lives and Music of 50 Great Classical Composers by Jeremy Nicholas 

How Music Works: The Science and Psychology of Beautiful Sounds, from Beethoven to the Beatles and Beyond by John Powell 

Playlist: The Rebels and Revolutionaries of Sound by James Rhodes 

Mr. Beethoven by Paul Griffiths 

And if you want to recreate the concert from the comfort of your home, here are some of the pieces on CD: 

Piano Concertos Nos. 2 & 4 

Choral Fantasy, Piano Concertos Nos. 3 & 5 

Symphony No. 5, C minor; Symphony No. 6, F major, “Pastoral” 

Give us a call (440-333-7610) if you’d like to place any of the physical copies on hold! 

-Linnea 

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