LvB250 – The Beethoven Year 2020
In 2020, the entire music world will celebrate the 250-year anniversary of Ludwig van Beethoven. For many people, Beethoven is the original great composer. His music is continually relevant.
In classical music, it is impossible to shake off Beethoven, nor would anyone want to. Instead, let us embrace our fascination with this headstrong master’s achievements during what was on paper only a 56-year-long life, but which is in reality eternal.
Ladies versus Beethoven 18–28 March 2020
At Konserthuset, we are properly celebrating the anniversary of Beethoven – and an orchestral festival is at the centre of the festivities!
Over the course of two intensive weeks, we will present all nine symphonies, performed by the resident Royal Stockholm Philharmonic Orchestra and six other Swedish orchestras. Beethoven’s symphonies comprise a unique and infinite universe that holds incredible discoveries for the first-time listener, but which can also be explored over and over again. At this festival, the symphonies will be placed in a new light through presentations with pieces by women composers from the nineteenth century to our own era. We call this festival Ladies versus Beethoven (LvB) – not as a comparison between women composers and Beethoven, but rather as a joint tribute to western classical music.
The Royal Stockholm Philharmonic Orchestra and Chief Conductor Sakari Oramo will perform Symphonies No. 1, 5 and 9. In order of appearance, guest orchestras include the Gävle Symphony Orchestra, the Swedish Radio Symphony Orchestra, the Norrköping Symphony Orchestra, the Royal Swedish Orchestra, the Gothenburg Symphony Orchestra and the Swedish Chamber Orchestra. In total, just over 600 musicians will participate in the festival.
More about the festival
But naturally, symphonies are not all that Beethoven is known for; in 2020 we will also present Beethoven’s chamber music, his cello sonatas with cellists from Royal Stockholm Philharmonic Orchestra and through complete concert series of Beethoven’s most iconic formats – the string quartets, piano sonatas and violin sonatas – performed by guest musicians of the highest international level.
Cuarteto Casals will tackle all of the string quartets in six concerts; Igor Levit will play all of the piano sonatas in eight concerts, and finally, violinist Frank Peter Zimmermann and pianist Martin Helmchen will perform all of the sonatas for violin and piano in two concerts.
And as if that were not enough, we will also make space for a concert performance of Beethoven’s only opera, Fidelio, with Nina Stemme, Michael Weinius and Karl-Magnus Fredriksson.
28 concerts – including Ludde B!
In total, throughout all of 2020, we will present 28 concerts with pieces by Ludwig van Beethoven – along with Ludde B concerts also for school children, in which the Royal Stockholm Philharmonic Orchestra gets into mischief with Beethoven.