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Beethoven as Nature lover

Beethoven loved nature in the Romantic sense of the term. It was there that he found relaxation, solitude and inspiration.

  • Key Visual: Beethoven as a Nature lover | Copyright: © Sonja Werner

    Key Visual: Beethoven as a Nature lover © Sonja Werner

In the ‘Pastoral’ Symphony Beethoven composed music which, in its organic and cyclical structure, can be considered a sonic portrayal of nature. Beethoven was a ‘musical tinkerer’ who brought back musical ideas and building-blocks from his long walks. In short, he was not just a nature lover; walking and being out of doors were often essential to his music.

Given his love of nature, it weight all the more heavily on him that his dwindling powers of hearing restricted his perception of nature. As he confided to his brothers in the moving Heiligenstadt Testament, ‘Imagine my humiliation when someone standing beside me heard a flute in the distance and I heard - nothing! or someone heard a shepherd singing and I heard – nothing’.

Beethoven‘s life and his approach to man and nature in his music are points of departure for several BTHVN2020 projects, including such current issues as environmental destruction and sustainability. Central projects of the BTHVN2020 main theme 'Beethoven as a Nature lover‘ are the Global Network and many concerts on World Environment Day 2020 as part of the BEETHOVEN PASTORAL PROJECT
as well as Beethoven country outings and picnics.

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