Wednesday, February 27, 2008

Beethoven - Canzona di Ringraziamento

This is one of the last compositions of Beethoven. He wrote this slow movement of his 15th quartet as thanksviging for having survived a near-fatal illness. It's a deeply moving piece and widely regarded as one of his greatest masterpieces (as the rest of the late quartets). I recommend listening to this piece (and preferably the entire quartet, of course) in complete silence; if one listens carefully, one cannot help but to share the existential experience felt as communicated by the master.

This is a legendary recording by the Julliard Quartet.

Ludwig van Beethoven : Quartet #15 Molto Adagio (Heiliger Dankgesang eines Genesenen an die Gottheit, in der lydischen Tonart).
Interpreter: Julliard Quartet
Album: Beethoven : Complete String Quartets.


Anonymous said...

This is music that is so heart-breaking and gorgeous that I only like to listen to it when I feel like I've done something to earn it (which is not nearly as often as I would like to!).

The slowest and most static moments sound like breath transformed into music, which must have been the only sound left for him to represent given his advanced state of deafness at the time.

To think that he was unable to hear (physically) the most beautiful music of his career, which he must have known ranks among the most beautiful music of all time, counts as another dimension of heartache and another reason why those of us who can hear should be eternally grateful for his perseverance and dedication in the face of his great suffering. To say nothing of his indescribable talent!

fcueto said...

I know what you mean!! I do the same with the adagio of the Hammerklavier sonata. I never let myself listen to it unless I need it or deserve it :)