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Beethoven Symphony No. 3

The first powerful chords in Beethoven’s Symphony No. 3 – the Eroica – are clear: we can expect a grand symphony about heroic bravery. Experience the Royal Stockholm Philharmonic Orchestra under the baton of Finnish conductor John Storgårds in this concert video on KonserthusetPlay.

Beethoven’s Symphony No. 3, also called ‘Eroica’ – the heroic – is an expansive, fascinating listening adventure. The surprises come one after the next in a flood: even the initial theme is developed by Beethoven in a way that had never before been done.

The symphony was originally composed in honour of Napoleon Bonaparte (1769–1821), but the story of how Beethoven tore off the title page from the symphony score where the original dedication to Napoleon was once found is famous – and also comes in many variations. According to friend and pupil Ferdinand Ries, after learning that Napoleon had declared himself emperor, Beethoven bellowed, ‘Now he will also trample all human rights underfoot and only promote his own interests; he will put himself before others and be a tyrant!’

Beethoven was a friend of France and his antipathy towards Napoleon is said to have softened later. In conjunction with a biography about the French emperor, Beethoven said, ‘Before, I could not tolerate him. Now my feelings have changed completely.’ 

  • The music

  • Ludwig van Beethoven Symphony No. 3 "Eroica"
  • Participants

  • Royal Stockholm Philharmonic Orchestra
  • John Storgårds conductor
  • Filmed in April 2017.
  • The video is approximately 53 minutes long.