Celebrating the most European of composers on the 250th anniversary of his birth

The EUYO is celebrating composer Ludwig van Beethoven's 250th anniversary with a major series of events exploring his music, his influence and his legacy. We ask musicians,

"As you look into the mirror that reflects Beethoven's work, what do you see? "



The extent of Beethoven’s legacy never fails to amaze: his ninth symphony has provided the European Union with its Ode to Joy hymn but also film maker Stanley Kubrick with material for his nightmarish  film Clockwork Orange, spreading Beethoven’s music to many millions of people around the globe.

Meanwhile rock and roll legend Chuck Berry inveighed against the composer in his famous song Roll over Beethoven, at the same moment that the late quartets and piano sonatas were providing inspiration for some of the most obscure music ever written. The range of the canvas is breathtaking.



There are many Beethovens; the revolutionary, the moralist, the innovator, the politician. No surprise then that in the years since his death the force of Beethoven’s influence has splintered, with composers trying to define his music and then claim his crown. Few have been immune to this.

It is as if we are all looking into a mirror called Beethoven. But coming at this mirror from a multitude of angles, we inevitably spy differing reflections and shards of musical meaning.



During 2020 the EUYO celebrates the composer’s 250th anniversary by exploring his music, influence and legacy, including joining conductor Marin Alsop in her All Together, A Global Ode to Joy project at the World Economic Forum in Davos, a series of concerts that pair Beethoven with composers from his own age to the present day and a series of short video pieces by distinguished musicians and musicologists.

During the summer a world premiere in Berlin presents a new commission from the European Broadcasting Union, followed by  immersive Beethoven chamber music projects in the EUYO’s homes in Ferrara and Grafenegg that will engage a diverse group of audiences. From Amsterdam to Moscow, from Myanmar to Vienna and beyond, throughout 2020 the EUYO’s young musicians will be found performing and exploring Beethoven's work and legacy.



This micro-site will be developed with video and other media showing what the Beethoven's Mirror project is teaching us about Beethoven as the year progresses. If you want to receive updates as new material is uploaded, want to see where we are performing Beethoven, or maybe even want to share your own thoughts on the idea of Beethoven's Mirror, then please do contact us at beethovensmirror@euyo.eu. Join us throughout the year as we celebrate the most European of composers!