When asked who was the greatest composer ever, many would answer, “Beethoven, of course!” We think that the composer, who never thought too little of his talents and who set the standard for all who followed, would not be surprised to know that the musical world is toasting him on the 250th anniversary of his birth, in December 1770. The New York Philharmonic’s championing of the great German composer goes back to the very first notes we ever performed, with Beethoven’s Fifth opening our inaugural concert in 1842.
We are most gratified to be part of Beethoven Immortal, December 12–16, WQXR’s exploration of his legacy and artistic longevity. Tune in each day at noon EST to catch Philharmonic performances of Beethoven’s groundbreaking symphonies, conducted by five Philharmonic Music Directors — Leonard Bernstein, Alan Gilbert, Kurt Masur, Zubin Mehta, and, on the first day, Jaap van Zweden, who is celebrating his own birthday that very day by conducting the Seventh Symphony!
True Beethovenistas who check back in over the five-day festival will catch performances and insights from some of our good friends, such as Fidelio by The Metropolitan Opera; a new radio series with Marin Alsop; and artists, including Wynton Marsalis, sharing personal reflections on Beethoven.
Join us in this virtual, musical celebration!