04

Belgian National OrchestraDavid Afkham conductor

Programme

Tragic Overture, op. 81 Johannes Brahms
Symphony no. 3, op. 55, "Eroica" Ludwig van Beethoven


Beethoven’s Third Symphony, “Eroica”, is revolutionary. On one hand, Beethoven straightened his back with this symphony - a victory of the mind over the body - after a serious personal crisis, brought about by his ever-increasing deafness. And on the other hand, he expressed with this work his admiration for Napoleon Bonaparte, who, at the beginning of the 19th century, presented himself as the embodiment of the democratic and anti-monarchist the French Revolution ideals. But when Napoleon crowned himself as an emperor a few years later, Beethoven tore up the title page of his Symphony in a fit of rage and anger. In the end he published the work under the subtitle “Sinfonia eroica, composta per festeggiare il sovvenire di un grand’uomo” (Heroic symphony, composed to celebrate the memory of a great man). As a prelude to the Eroica, the Belgian National Orchestra offers you Brahms's Tragic Overture: an exercise in style on the theme of sadness.