Help this blog survive--and keep it ad-free--by buying one of my books, below right.

Sunday, April 14, 2013

Sunday Morning in the Church of Beethoven

This week in my weekly feature:  Kerry Candaele's terrific Following the Ninth doc  is done and word comes from Kerrythat it will have its first screening June 4 at a large theater in Santa Barbara.   I seem to be associate producer of the film.  Our book, out in print and  e-book editions is   Journeys With Beethoven: Following the Ninth, and Beyond.  This was a dream project for me, as some may know from my Beethoven posts here, at The Nation, at Huff Post  and on Twitter. 

Kerry's  documentary (see trailer below) follows the Ninth Symphony and it's cultural and political influence around the world today.  So the book takes us from Chile to China and Japan, plus a stop in London for a full chapter with Billy Bragg, and then back in the USA.   In the "Beyond" section of the book I explore my own obsessive "travels" with Ludwig, as a longtime rock 'n roller, in recent years, via concerts and movies and CDs -- but also through new "Beethoven delivery systems" (YouTube, web forums, Twitter, etc.)  I also interview at length pianist Jeremy Denk, who wrote a terrific piece last month for New Yorker.   In any case, both the film and book offer a totally unique look at Beethoven--a Beethoven for our time, at last.

1 comment:

Laurence Glavin said...

I'm a pan-classicalist, with Beethoven as my favorite composer, but I'm also enamored of the art of singing, that is, opera and oratorio. I loved the tenor at the 6:00 minute mark of the video. I hope his name appears in the credits of the movie. There are some singers who perform in only oratorios and cantatas but no operas, maybe because they can't memorize all thos words and notes, and I don't blame them. Here in Boston, James Levine indulged in some dream casting for such works as the "Missa Solemnis" and Medelssohn's "Elijah (ok, Raphael Fruebeck de Burgos conducted "Elijah" last year, but it was Levine who could line up Metropolitan Opera singers for a 3-day gig in Boston). I suspect the tenot at the 6:00 minute mark in the video was from the opera stage and was in a sense "acting" out the text at that particular moment when Beethoven reverted back to the craze for "Turkish-sounding" music when he was an orchestra player in Bonn during his yute.