The Philadelphia Orchestra

Beethoven 2020 | The Seventh

WednesdayAugust 128:00 PM



Yannick Nézet-Séguin, conductor


Beethoven  Symphony No. 8
Beethoven  Symphony No. 4
Simon  Fate Now Conquers – NY Premiere*
Beethoven  Symphony No. 7

beethoven 2020 saratoga performing arts center

*indicates SPAC Premiere

Program Notes

The complete symphonic cycle will kick-off with the New York Premiere of Fate Now Conquers composed by Carlos Simon and inspired by Beethoven and written in dialogue with his symphonies.

Buoyant and humorous, the Eighth Symphony belies none of the composer’s worsening health issues or what had to be the devastating end of a love affair, detailed in a famous letter written around the same time to his “Immortal Beloved.” Perhaps the least known, the Fourth was widely admired: Schumann compared it to “a slender Greek maiden” between the two “Norse giants” of the Third and Fifth; Berlioz insisted it was the work of an angel. And Tchaikovsky described the triumphant Seventh as “full of unrestrained joy, full of bliss and pleasure of life.” The exhilarating and familiar second movement is said to have been so inspiring at the premiere, an encore was demanded instantly.

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