ABOLISH THE AUSTRALIA COUNCIL - QUESTION MARK

By Derek Strahan BA Cantab (Modern Languages, French & Spanish)
   
 

Part 8 - COMPOSERS EARNING MONEY

LUDWIG VAN BEETHOVEN

Beethoven presents a different case, and this can be explored in greater detail at "Beethoven & the Illuminati" , one of four articles on Beethoven posted at the website.

Beethoven's first sponsors during his youth in Bonn were members of the Illuminati, a radical quasi-Masonic body which was soon to be banned throughout Europe, and had already gone underground in Bonn , where it was known as the "Reading & Recreation Society of Bonn ". In 1790 this society commissioned Beethoven to write his "Cantata on the Death of the Emperor Joseph II", who was an unusually reformist ruler. It is highly likely that the contacts Beethoven made in Bonn , were at the basis of his financial support throughout his life in Vienna , and influenced the nature of many of his compositions. The libretti of some vocal works, including the opera "Fidelio" and the 9th Symphony explicitly reflect the influence of Enlightenment philosophical thought. "Fidelio" even has a direct quotation from that early "Illuminati"-sponsored Cantata.

Beethoven, of course, supplemented his annuity from three aristocrats by doing deals with publishers, and accepted paid commissions, but that annuity provided a basic continuity of income. Although Beethoven's interest in politics is well known, less well known is the link between his politics and the financial backing he enjoyed throughout his life. Articles on this topic are posted on my website: www.revolve.com.au. My talk "Beethoven & the Illuminati" will illustrate the thesis with musical clues, two of which we will hear tonight. Do I digress? The context is, again: "Composers earning money".

Follow the trail of politics in Beethoven's music, and you are following the money trail. After all, the work which earned him most money during his lifetime was " Wellington 's Victory", also known as the "Battle Symphony" - complete with percussive use of actual gunfire -a forerunner of Tchaikovsky's "1812 overture".

Here are two samples of Beethoven's music. From the rarely heard "Cantata on the Death of the Emperor Joseph II", we hear the introduction on oboe and part of the beautiful soprano aria "Then Rose All Mankind", praising the Emperor as a champion of the oppressed. This is followed by the rarely heard opening passage of the chorus from the final act of the original version of "Fidelio", which was cut by Beethoven himself, when he ruthlessly produced the mutilated final version of the opera by which we know it. This passage, which is also introduced by the oboe, clearly reveals the relationship between the two works, separated by 15 years, but linked by identical philosophical concerns having to do with social justice. Our extract is from the complete recording of the restored original version titled "Leonora" , conducted by Herbert Blomstedt, now available on CD.

(MUSIC CUE 4 Excerpt from Beethoven aria "Then Rose All mankind")
(MUSIC CUE 5 Excerpt from Beethoven aria from "Leonora")

Next >>

 

 
Part 1 - Biography
Part 1 - Preamble
Part 2 - Agenda
Part 2 - Arts Organisations - History
Part 3 - Rise of the Committee
Part 4 - Radical Proposition
1. Direct support?
2. Funding?
3. Funding bodies?
4. Bureaucrats?
5. Not empowered.
6 Statistics!
Part 5 - Loose Ends
The Medici Program
Part 6 - No Reasons
Part 7 - Summing Up
Part 8 - Composers earning money
J.S. Bach
Josef Haydn
Beethoven
Wagner
 
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SEE ALSO
“THE ECONOMIC DISEMPOWERMENT OF AUSTRALIAN COMPOSERS”
“COPYRIGHT REFORM”
“ACADEMICS AS TERRITORIAL MAMMALS”
"MUSIC AS AN INDUSTRY "
 
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