Two-Day Festival To Spotlight Beethoven’s “Ninth”

Beethoven’s Ninth Symphony with its famous choral finale, the “Ode to Joy,” is the inspiration for Wake Forest University’s Beethoven Festival March 1-2.

“Joy’s Legacy: Beethoven’s Ninth Symphony,” a weekend-long event, will include a scholarly symposium, a faculty/student recital and a performance of the Ninth Symphony at 3 p.m. Sunday, March 2.

David Levy, Wake Forestís music department chair and author of “Beethoven: The Ninth Symphony,” will conduct the Sunday afternoon concert by the Winston-Salem Piedmont Triad Symphony, Wake Forest students, and the Beethoven Festival Choir. In addition to the Ninth Symphony, the program will feature “Choral Fantasy” with Wake Forest pianist Pamela Howland as the soloist and Wake Forest orchestra director David Hagy as conductor.

Three renowned Beethoven scholars will lead discussions for the symposium portion of the program entitled, “Beethoven, the Ninth and the Millennium.” Participants will include Owen Jander of Wellesley College; Ora Frishberg Saloman of Baruch College and the City University of New York Graduate Center; and William Meredith, director of Beethoven, the Ira F. Brilliant Center for Beethoven Studies at San Jose State University. Lectures will run from 2-5 p.m. Saturday, March 1, in Brendle Recital Hall.

“As we approach the 21st century, Beethoven and his music have become the canvas upon which forces for change in culture have projected their aspirations, as well as their fears, “said Levy, organizer of the weekendís events. “The symposium will explore these forces of change and explore their implications for the future of music and society.”

Levy has written and lectured on Beethoven for both scholarly and popular audiences. His essays have appeared in several journals, including 19th Century Music, Berlioz Studies and Notes. A former chair of the southeastern chapter of the American Musicological Society, he is a program annotator for the Winston-Salem Piedmont Triad Symphony.

At 8 p.m. Saturday, Wake Forest students and faculty will present “Beethoven and his Contemporaries,” a recital of music by Arriaga, Sor, Beethoven and others.

The Beethoven Festival is part of Wake Forestís Year of the Arts, a yearlong celebration of the arts featuring special performances, exhibitions, symposia and other events. Radio station WFDD (88.5 FM), Wake Forestís National Public Radio affiliate, will co-sponsor the Beethoven Festival.

Admission to the symposium and the faculty/student recital is free. Tickets for the concert featuring the Ninth Symphony are $16 and $22. A portion of the proceeds for the concert will go to the Wake Forest chapter of Students Against Drunk Driving (SADD). To purchase tickets, call 910-759-5295. For additional information, call 910-759-5026.

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