The Auckland Philharmonia Orchestra joins the worldwide celebrations marking Beethoven's 250th birthday in 2020 with a series of concerts and events.

Beethoven 250 will be a fantastic festival within the Festival.  As part of the series of events, the APO has invited four New Zealand composers to respond to Beethoven's music performed by APO Young Achievers, and to accompany these performances, guest speakers will offer their perspectives on Beethoven's life and legacy.

Ludwig Reflected #1
Monday 23 March 6.00pm
Gillian Whitehead New work, string quartet
Speaker Rod Oram
String Quartet Op.18 No.3 (mvts I & II)
In the last few years of his life, Beethoven concentrated on string quartets to the exclusion of almost all else. Most of his contemporaries thought these late quartets incomprehensible. Dame Gillian Whitehead disagrees, answering Beethoven’s rarefied questions with her own new utterance.
Rod Oram will speak to three key aspects of Beethoven’s life (and music): his intense involvement with nature; with politics and revolution; and with ageing. Rod will weave these together with his musings on Beethoven’s and Gillian Whitehead’s music. 
The concert rounds off with two movements from Beethoven’s String Quartet Op.18 No.3 performed by the APO Young Achievers.
Note: Beethoven String Quartet in D Major replaces the previously advertised Beethoven Grosse Fuge

Ludwig Reflected #2
Wednesday 25 March 6.00pm
Chris Gendall New work, piano trio
Speaker Suzanne Purdy
Piano Trio Op.70 No.2 (mvts I & III)
The infinitely lyrical violin and cello, versus the more mechanical piano: a combination of opposites? Beethoven thought not, saying ‘One can also sing with the pianoforte’. Chris Gendall has long experience writing for piano trio, and his new piece will be the perfect foil to Beethoven’s. 
Suzanne Purdy will investigate Beethoven’s progressive hearing loss in relation to his music, how he transitioned from a hearing person to a hearing-impaired person trying to access sound through various means, and the act of composing music in a late phase of deafness. What if cochlear implant technology had been around in Beethoven’s time?
To wrap up the concert you will hear two movements from Beethoven’s Piano Trio Op.70 No.2 performed by the APO Young Achievers.

Ludwig Reflected #3
Friday 27 March 6.00pm
Celeste Oram and Alex Taylor New work, ensemble
Speaker Paula Morris
Paula Morris will speak about Beethoven from the perspective of literature, from those writing around the time of Beethoven to how Beethoven’s legacy has impacted contemporary writers. Her talk will explore the Vienna of Beethoven’s day and reflect upon him as a social being embroiled in various professional friendships, rivalries, collaborations and feuds.
New Zealand composers Celeste Oram and Alex Taylor have frequently worked together, but this time they have a new collaborator – a sprightly 250-year-old by the name of Ludwig. Based on Beethoven’s music, this new piece promises to be a playful, theatrical and robustly provocative examination of Beethoven’s art and influence. This brand-new work will be performed by the APO Young Achievers.

Ludwig Reflected events are free but space is limited. Register here


Performed by APO Young Achievers 

Ludwig Reflected #1
Composer Gillian Whitehead
Speaker Rod Oram
Violin Zosia Herlihy-O’Brien
Violin Cindy Jia
Viola Cecile McNeill
Cello Vincent Chen

Ludwig Reflected #2
Composer Chris Gendall
Speaker Suzanne Purdy
Violin Diane Huh
Cello Te Hee Kim
Piano Phoebe Deng

Ludwig Reflected #3
Composers Celeste Oram and Alex Taylor
Speaker Paula Morris
Soprano Sophia Yang
Tenor Sid Chand
Baritone Arthur Close
Violin Ki Hei Lee
Double Bass TBC
Clarinet Billie Hart
Flute Leon Reynolds
Piano Marianna Kang




Presented by

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in Association with

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