Tonality, The Late Quartets, and Beyond … or not. | Why Beethoven?

Why Beethoven? Lecture Series

Pasadena Conservatory of Music

100 North Hill Avenue
Pasadena, California 91106

Tonality, The Late Quartets, and Beyond … or not. | Why Beethoven?

$30

In a new partnership with the Santa-Barbara based Chamber Ensemble, Camerata Pacifica, we are presenting three lectures exploring the timeless influence of Beethoven. Discussions will led by leading scholars including  Jan Swafford, author of the new biography and study, Beethoven, Anguish and Triumph.

Composers favored certain keys for certain moods, most famously the driving and demonic C minor for Beethoven. Why is this the case, and why his rare and special use of, for instance, C# minor? How does the use of keys within movements help define their nature? When we come to Beethoven’s late music, why are quartets so hallowed and, indeed, just how forward looking are they? “By the late years, an uncanny duality develops: On the one hand, the sense that Beethoven might do anything harmonically, that he would venture to the far ends of the musical earth; on the other, always there, rock-solid, the triads, the tonic and the dominant, the familiar landmarks of classical harmony.” –Jeremy Denk