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BTHVN WEEK: Pure Beethoven

"Art demands of us that we shall not stand still" ‒ Beethoven wrote this to his friend Karl Holz in a conversation book during the composition of his String Quartet Op. 131. A few years earlier, on 29 July 1819, in a letter addressed to his close friend and student, the Archduke Rudolph, he wrote: "In the world of art, as in the whole of our great creation, freedom and progress are the main objectives".

This idea of progress, development, moving ahead is basic to the understanding of Beethoven's music. In 16 concerts divided in four blocks, we shall witness this in every block and in almost every concert.

The idea is that listeners attending the concerts of just one block can get a thorough impression of Beethoven's evolution and of the variety of his chamber music production. Instead of presenting the complete chamber music by Beethoven in the traditional way, we chose to mix genres and styles and performers in order to get a deeper, richer understanding of Beethoven's procedures and his continuous struggle to explore and conquer new territories.

The stage will be taken both by musicians and ensembles which have played in previous editions of the BTHVN WEEK, and by new musicians and ensembles who have shown an equally deep commitment to Beethoven's music. We shall also have a mixture of modern instruments and historical performance practice, trying to offer in this way in the performances at the Chamber Music Hall of the Beethoven-Haus the broadest possible approach to this inexhaustible treasure of Western chamber music.