thumbnail of Beethoven: The Man Who Freed Music; 3; Holmquest: Beethoven - The Pianos He Knew and Played, and their Music
Transcript
Hide -
If this transcript has significant errors that should be corrected, let us know, so we can add it to FIX IT+
Uu sh... Beethoven, the man who freed music. Commemorating the 200th anniversary of the birth of Ludwig von Beethoven in 1770, one of a series of programs produced by the University of Michigan Broadcasting Service
reviewing the musical, social, and political climate of Europe during the lifetime of the man who freed music. Today's host is Barbara Homquest, former and arbor resident, now living in England. Her topic, Beethoven, the pianos he knew and played, and their music. His Homquest talks about and performs on several pianos from Beethoven's era, now housed in the Klavier collection, Bethesdan Kent England, the largest keyboard collection in the world, numbering nearly 100 specimens. Here now is Miss Homquest. Some years ago, a particularly sensitive and discerning university student in his 20s, declared that his understanding of life had materialized and begun to function because of Ludwig von Beethoven. It was not so much the great composer's music that stirred this young man, but rather Beethoven's singleness of purpose in life,
and his ultimate triumph over the obstacles that came his way, poverty, unilateral love affairs, loneliness, censured by music critics, and finally the ultimate personal void, resulting from his loss of hearing. But out of this sequence came what is generally regarded to be the absolute height of musical creativity and achievement. There was a continuous flow of productive communication from Beethoven to the world around himself, and that production began in serious form in 1781 when he was only 11, not to be interrupted until his death. He composed, he performed, he taught, and lectured, he conducted, he advised piano manufacturers, but most important of all, he kept putting his varied experiences into notes that could be enjoyed by anyone who took the trouble to learn to read them and to play them. And so violinists, cellists, orchestras singly and together, singers, and especially pianists, have been flourishing under that musical umbrella of heritage
that Beethoven provided, truly is a composer of the people and for the people. It was true then, in the early 19th century, as it is now, that composers turned to the piano as their most gratifying medium to work with. The instrument is complete in itself, it can imitate other instruments to a certain extent, its pitch is fixed, provided it is tuned regularly, and the dimensions of sound that are potentially contained in its large frame are practically without limits. To speak of a piano, or piano forte, or forte piano, all these names mean very much the same. One speaks of such a variety of instruments that there is a need to sort them out, according to their place in history. The piano that Beethoven would have practiced his Bach preids and fugues on, for instance, has a very thin flute-like sound, and because of the lightness of the keys and strings, one plays such an instrument merely by stroking the keys.
Listen to this little wasp by Beethoven, as played on a Stein piano of about 185. The piano that was played in the early 19th century, as played on a Stein piano of about 185. The piano that was played in the early 19th century, as played on a Stein piano of about 185. The piano that was played in the early 19th century, as played on a Stein piano of about 185. The piano that was played in the early 19th century, as played on a Stein piano of about 185.
The piano that was played in the early 19th century, as played on a Stein piano of about 185. The piano that was played in the early 19th century, as played on a Stein piano of about 185. The piano that was played in the early 19th century, as played on a Stein piano of about 185. The piano that was played on a Stein piano of about 185.
The piano that was played on a Stein piano of about 185. The piano that was played on a Stein piano of about 185. The piano that was played on a Stein piano of about 185. On a heavier piano, a broadwood of 1819. The piano that was played on a heavier piano, a broadwood of 1819. The piano that was played on a heavier piano, a broadwood of 1819.
The piano that was played on a heavier piano, a broadwood of 1819. The piano that was played on a heavier piano, a broadwood of 1819. The piano that was played on a heavier piano, a broadwood of 1819. The piano that was played on a heavier piano, a broadwood of 1819.
The piano that was played on a heavier piano, a broadwood of 1819. This broadwood that was sent to him, though, was a huge success and remained with Beethoven until his death, after which the instrument was handed over to Artaria, his publisher, eventually to List, and at this moment sits in lonely splendor in the Hungarian National Museum in Budapest. Beethoven adored the instrument and wrote frequently about its warm tone and its responsive touch. He even said he could hit it with his boot jack without it breaking and that proved its worth. How different from the Viennese piano character it really was and still is through restoration, as you will now hear on a recording. The broadwood here represented is perhaps a year younger than Beethoven's instrument, but the sound as far as anyone can learn through documentation is exactly the same.
Before playing for you this recording of the Moonlight Sonata on a broadwood grand, I would like to play a bit of the first movement on a modern grand. In that way you can tell how the piano has increased in its tone, in its sonority, and perhaps it's gotten a bit too muddy for some of Beethoven's thoughts, but that, after all, is a matter of taste. Let me play the first movement of the Moonlight Sonata of Beethoven on a modern grand, and immediately after you will hear the same sonata in its entirety played on a broadwood grand piano of the year 1819. The first movement of the Moonlight Sonata of Beethoven on a broadwood grand piano of the year 1819.
The Moonlight Sonata of Beethoven on a broadwood grand piano of the year 1819. The Moonlight Sonata of Beethoven on a broadwood grand piano of the year 1819. The Moonlight Sonata of Beethoven on a broadwood grand piano of the year 1819. The Moonlight Sonata of Beethoven on a broadwood grand piano of the year 1819. The Moonlight Sonata of Beethoven on a broadwood grand piano of the year 1819.
The Moonlight Sonata of Beethoven on a broadwood grand piano of the year 1819. The Moonlight Sonata of Beethoven on a broadwood grand piano of the year 1819. The Moonlight Sonata of Beethoven on a broadwood grand piano of the year 1819. The Moonlight Sonata of Beethoven on a broadwood grand piano of the year 1819. The Moonlight Sonata of Beethoven on a broadwood grand piano of the year 1819.
The Moonlight Sonata of Beethoven on a broadwood grand piano of the year 1819. The Moonlight Sonata of Beethoven on a broadwood grand piano of the year 1819. The Moonlight Sonata of Beethoven on a broadwood grand piano of the year 1819. The Moonlight Sonata of Beethoven on a broadwood grand piano of the year 1819.
The Moonlight Sonata of Beethoven on a broadwood grand piano of the year 1819. The Moonlight Sonata of Beethoven on a broadwood grand piano of the year 1819. The Moonlight Sonata of Beethoven on a broadwood grand piano of the year 1819. The Moonlight Sonata of Beethoven on a broadwood grand piano of the year 1819. The Moonlight Sonata of Beethoven on a broadwood grand piano of the year 1819.
The Moonlight Sonata of Beethoven on a broadwood grand piano of the year 1819. The Moonlight Sonata of Beethoven on a broadwood grand piano of the year 1819. The Moonlight Sonata of Beethoven on a broadwood grand piano of the year 1819. The Moonlight Sonata of Beethoven on a broadwood grand piano of the year 1819. The Moonlight Sonata of Beethoven on a broadwood grand piano of the year 1819.
The Moonlight Sonata of Beethoven on a broadwood grand piano of the year 1819. The Moonlight Sonata of Beethoven on a broadwood grand piano of the year 1819. The Moonlight Sonata of Beethoven on a broadwood grand piano of the year 1819. The Moonlight Sonata of Beethoven on a broadwood grand piano of the year 1819. The Moonlight Sonata of Beethoven on a broadwood grand piano of the year 1819.
The Moonlight Sonata of Beethoven on a broadwood grand piano of the year 1819. The Moonlight Sonata of Beethoven on a broadwood grand piano of the year 1819. The Moonlight Sonata of Beethoven on a broadwood grand piano of the year 1819. The Moonlight Sonata of Beethoven on a broadwood grand piano of the year 1819. The Moonlight Sonata of Beethoven on a broadwood grand piano of the year 1819.
The Moonlight Sonata of Beethoven on a broadwood grand piano of the year 1819. The Moonlight Sonata of Beethoven on a broadwood grand piano of the year 1819. The Moonlight Sonata of Beethoven on a broadwood grand piano of the year 1819. The Moonlight Sonata of Beethoven on a broadwood grand piano of the year 1819.
The Moonlight Sonata of Beethoven on a broadwood grand piano of the year 1819. The Moonlight Sonata of Beethoven on a broadwood grand piano of the year 1819. The Moonlight Sonata of Beethoven on a broadwood grand piano of the year 1819. The Moonlight Sonata of Beethoven on a broadwood grand piano of the year 1819. The Moonlight Sonata of Beethoven on a broadwood grand piano of the year 1819.
The Moonlight Sonata of Beethoven on a broadwood grand piano of the year 1819. The Moonlight Sonata of Beethoven on a broadwood grand piano of the year 1819. The Moonlight Sonata of Beethoven on a broadwood grand piano of the year 1819. The Moonlight Sonata of Beethoven on a broadwood grand piano of the year 1819. The Moonlight Sonata of Beethoven on a broadwood grand piano of the year 1819.
The Moonlight Sonata of Beethoven on a broadwood grand piano of the year 1819. The Moonlight Sonata of Beethoven on a broadwood grand piano of the year 1819. The Moonlight Sonata of Beethoven on a broadwood grand piano of the year 1819. The Moonlight Sonata of Beethoven on a broadwood grand piano of the year 1819. The Moonlight Sonata of Beethoven on a broadwood grand piano of the year 1819.
The Moonlight Sonata of Beethoven on a broadwood grand piano of the year 1819. The Moonlight Sonata of Beethoven on a broadwood grand piano of the year 1819. The Moonlight Sonata of Beethoven on a broadwood grand piano of the year 1819. The Moonlight Sonata of Beethoven on a broadwood grand piano of the year 1819. The Moonlight Sonata of Beethoven on a broadwood grand piano of the year 1819.
The Moonlight Sonata of Beethoven on a broadwood grand piano of the year 1819. The Moonlight Sonata of Beethoven on a broadwood grand piano of the year 1819. The Moonlight Sonata of Beethoven on a broadwood grand piano of the year 1819. The Moonlight Sonata of Beethoven on a broadwood grand piano of the year 1819.
The Moonlight Sonata of Beethoven on a broadwood grand piano of the year 1819. The Moonlight Sonata of Beethoven on a broadwood grand piano of the year 1819. The Moonlight Sonata of Beethoven on a broadwood grand piano of the year 1819. The Moonlight Sonata of Beethoven on a broadwood grand piano of the year 1819.
The Moonlight Sonata of Beethoven on a broadwood grand piano of the year 1819. The Moonlight Sonata of Beethoven on a broadwood grand piano of the year 1819. The Moonlight Sonata of Beethoven on a broadwood grand piano of the year 1819.
The Moonlight Sonata of Beethoven on a broadwood grand piano of the year 1819. The Moonlight Sonata of Beethoven on a broadwood grand piano of the year 1819. The Moonlight Sonata of Beethoven on a broadwood grand piano of the year 1819. The Moonlight Sonata of Beethoven on a broadwood grand piano of the year 1819. The Moonlight Sonata of Beethoven on a broadwood grand piano of the year 1819.
The Moonlight Sonata of Beethoven on a broadwood grand piano of the year 1819. The Moonlight Sonata of Beethoven on a broadwood grand piano of the year 1819. The Moonlight Sonata of Beethoven on a broadwood grand piano of the year 1819. The Moonlight Sonata of Beethoven on a broadwood grand piano of the year 1819. The Moonlight Sonata of Beethoven on a broadwood grand piano of the year 1819.
The Moonlight Sonata of Beethoven on a broadwood grand piano of the year 1819. The Moonlight Sonata of Beethoven on a broadwood grand piano of the year 1819. The Moonlight Sonata of Beethoven on a broadwood grand piano of the year 1819. The Moonlight Sonata of Beethoven on a broadwood grand piano of the year 1819. The Moonlight Sonata of Beethoven on a broadwood grand piano of the year 1819.
The Moonlight Sonata of Beethoven on a broadwood grand piano of the year 1819. The Moonlight Sonata of Beethoven on a broadwood grand piano of the year 1819. The Moonlight Sonata of Beethoven on a broadwood grand piano of the year 1819. The Moonlight Sonata of Beethoven on a broadwood grand piano of the year 1819.
The Moonlight Sonata of Beethoven on a broadwood grand piano of the year 1819. The Moonlight Sonata of Beethoven on a broadwood grand piano of the year 1819. The Moonlight Sonata of Beethoven on a broadwood grand piano of the year 1819. The Moonlight Sonata of Beethoven on a broadwood grand piano of the year 1819.
The Moonlight Sonata of Beethoven on a broadwood grand piano of the year 1819. The Moonlight Sonata of Beethoven on a broadwood grand piano of the year 1819. The Moonlight Sonata of Beethoven on a broadwood grand piano of the year 1819. The Moonlight Sonata of Beethoven on a broadwood grand piano of the year 1819. The Moonlight Sonata of Beethoven on a broadwood grand piano of the year 1819.
The Moonlight Sonata of Beethoven on a broadwood grand piano of the year 1819. The Moonlight Sonata of Beethoven on a broadwood grand piano of the year 1819. The Moonlight Sonata of Beethoven on a broadwood grand piano of the year 1819. The Moonlight Sonata of Beethoven on a broadwood grand piano of the year 1819.
The Moonlight Sonata of Beethoven on a broadwood grand piano of the year 1819. The Moonlight Sonata of Beethoven on a broadwood grand piano of the year 1819. The Moonlight Sonata of Beethoven on a broadwood grand piano of the year 1819. The Moonlight Sonata of Beethoven on a broadwood grand piano of the year 1819. The Moonlight Sonata of Beethoven on a broadwood grand piano of the year 1819.
The Moonlight Sonata of Beethoven on a broadwood grand piano of the year 1819. The Moonlight Sonata of Beethoven on a broadwood grand piano of the year 1819. The Moonlight Sonata of Beethoven on a broadwood grand piano of the year 1819. The Moonlight Sonata of Beethoven on a broadwood grand piano of the year 1819. The Moonlight Sonata of Beethoven on a broadwood grand piano of the year 1819.
The Moonlight Sonata of Beethoven on a broadwood grand piano of the year 1819. The Moonlight Sonata of Beethoven on a broadwood grand piano of the year 1819. The Moonlight Sonata of Beethoven on a broadwood grand piano of the year 1819. The Moonlight Sonata of Beethoven on a broadwood grand piano of the year 1819.
The Moonlight Sonata of Beethoven on a broadwood grand piano of the year 1819. The Moonlight Sonata of Beethoven on a broadwood grand piano of the year 1819. The Moonlight Sonata of Beethoven on a broadwood grand piano of the year 1819. The Moonlight Sonata of Beethoven on a broadwood grand piano of the year 1819. The Moonlight Sonata of Beethoven on a broadwood grand piano of the year 1819.
The Moonlight Sonata of Beethoven on a broadwood grand piano of the year 1819. The Moonlight Sonata of Beethoven on a broadwood grand piano of the year 1819. The Moonlight Sonata of Beethoven on a broadwood grand piano of the year 1819. The Moonlight Sonata of Beethoven on a broadwood grand piano of the year 1819. The Moonlight Sonata of Beethoven on a broadwood grand piano of the year 1819.
The Moonlight Sonata of Beethoven on a broadwood grand piano of the year 1819. The Moonlight Sonata of Beethoven on a broadwood grand piano of the year 1819. The Moonlight Sonata of Beethoven on a broadwood grand piano of the year 1819. The Moonlight Sonata of Beethoven on a broadwood grand piano of the year 1819. The Moonlight Sonata of Beethoven on a broadwood grand piano of the year 1819.
The Moonlight Sonata of Beethoven on a broadwood grand piano of the year 1819. The Moonlight Sonata of Beethoven on a broadwood grand piano of the year 1819. The Moonlight Sonata of Beethoven on a broadwood grand piano of the year 1819. The Moonlight Sonata of Beethoven on a broadwood grand piano of the year 1819.
The Moonlight Sonata of Beethoven on a broadwood grand piano of the year 1819. The Moonlight Sonata of Beethoven on a broadwood grand piano of the year 1819. The Moonlight Sonata of Beethoven on a broadwood grand piano of the year 1819. The Moonlight Sonata of Beethoven on a broadwood grand piano of the year 1819. The Moonlight Sonata of Beethoven on a broadwood grand piano of the year 1819.
The Moonlight Sonata of Beethoven on a broadwood grand piano of the year 1819. The Moonlight Sonata of Beethoven on a broadwood grand piano of the year 1819. The Moonlight Sonata of Beethoven on a broadwood grand piano of the year 1819. The Moonlight Sonata of Beethoven on a broadwood grand piano of the year 1819. That was the Sonata Opus 109 by Beethoven, performed on a graph piano dating from the year 1829.
Perhaps you heard the cracking of a pedal here and there in the recording, a sad but inevitable reminder of the age of the instrument. It was no doubt the difficulties appearing in the wooden pedals in their framework that prompted piano manufacturers in later years to substitute metal ones, such as we have now. A good thing too, for often a piano had four or more pedals, and in that case it was not the more the merrier but the more the noisier. The matter did get out of hand at one point when the piano became primarily a parlor instrument to divert guests on long winter evenings. Pedals began to be added to imitate sounds of triangles, bassoons, pianissimoes, chelest noises, and the bells and symbols that are part and parcel of Mozart's Rando a la Turca, or of Beethoven's variations on the ruins of Athens. These effects were achieved by bringing strips of thelum or parchment between the strings and hammers, or by synchronizing bits of metal to work as rhythmic accompaniment. Beethoven I suspect had little traffic with all these innovations, restraining his interest to three or possibly four pedals, one to sustain the sound after the fingers leave the keys, one to slide the action to the left so that it operates on only one string instead of three or four, and one or two more pedals for a moderated sound in between the other two.
In fact on the graph it was possible to play on one, two, three, or all four strings by using the various pedals. On the Broadway of 1819, which you will hear once more, there are three strings for each note, and like the graph the pedals control one, two, or three of them in combination. Here now the first movement of Sonata Opus 110 by Beethoven, Moderato Cantabile Molto Espresivo played on the Broadway of 1819. The second movement of Sonata Opus 110 by Beethoven, Moderato Cantabile Molto Espresivo played on the Broadway of 1819.
The second movement of Sonata Opus 110 by Beethoven, Moderato Cantabile Molto Espresivo played on the Broadway of 1819. The second movement of Sonata Opus 110 by Beethoven, Moderato Cantabile Molto Espresivo played on the Broadway of 1819. The second movement of Sonata Opus 110 by Beethoven, Moderato Cantabile Molto Espresivo played on the Broadway of 1819. The second movement of Sonata Opus 110 by Beethoven, Moderato Cantabile Molto Espresivo played on the Broadway of 1819. The second movement of Sonata Opus 110 by Beethoven, Moderato Cantabile Molto Espresivo played on the Broadway of 1819.
The second movement of Sonata Opus 110 by Beethoven, Moderato Cantabile Molto Espresivo played on the Broadway of 1819. The second movement of Sonata Opus 110 by Beethoven, Moderato Cantabile Molto Espresivo played on the Broadway of 1819. The second movement of Sonata Opus 110 by Beethoven, Moderato Cantabile Molto Espresivo played on the Broadway of 1819. The second movement of Sonata Opus 110 by Beethoven, Moderato Cantabile Molto Espresivo played on the Broadway of 1819. The second movement of Sonata Opus 110 by Beethoven, Moderato Cantabile Molto Espresivo played on the Broadway of 1819.
The second movement of Sonata Opus 110 by Beethoven, Moderato Cantabile Molto Espresivo played on the Broadway of 1819. The second movement of Sonata Opus 110 by Beethoven, Moderato Cantabile Molto Espresivo played on the Broadway of 1819. The second movement of Sonata Opus 110 by Beethoven, Moderato Cantabile Molto Espresivo played on the Broadway of 1819. The second movement of Sonata Opus 110 by Beethoven, Moderato Cantabile Molto Espresivo played on the Broadway of 1819. The second movement of Sonata Opus 110 by Beethoven, Moderato Cantabile Molto Espresivo played on the Broadway of 1819.
The second movement of Sonata Opus 110 by Beethoven, Moderato Cantabile Molto Espresivo played on the Broadway of 1819. The second movement of Sonata Opus 110 by Beethoven, Moderato Cantabile Molto Espresivo played on the Broadway of 1819. The second movement of Sonata Opus 110 by Beethoven, Moderato Cantabile Molto Espresivo played on the Broadway of 1819. The second movement of Sonata Opus 110 by Beethoven, Moderato Cantabile Molto Espresivo played on the Broadway of 1819. The second movement of Sonata Opus 110 by Beethoven, Moderato Cantabile Molto Espresivo played on the Broadway of 1819.
The second movement of Sonata Opus 110 by Beethoven, Moderato Cantabile Molto Espresivo played on the Broadway of 1819. The second movement of Sonata Opus 110 by Beethoven, Moderato Cantabile Molto Espresivo played on the Broadway of 1819. The second movement of Sonata Opus 110 by Beethoven, Moderato Cantabile Molto Espresivo played on the Broadway of 1819. The second movement of Sonata Opus 110 by Beethoven, Moderato Cantabile Molto Espresivo played on the Broadway of 1819. The second movement of Sonata Opus 110 by Beethoven, Moderato Cantabile Molto Espresivo played on the Broadway of 1819.
The second movement of Sonata Opus 110 by Beethoven, Moderato Cantabile Molto Espresivo played on the Broadway of 1819. The second movement of Sonata Opus 110 by Beethoven, Moderato Cantabile Molto Espresivo played on the Broadway of 1819. In spite of some of the inadequacies by contemporary standards, the pianos of the early 19th century have yielded up secrets that in turn unravel some of the deepest mysteries in Beethoven's piano music. The peddling, the phrasing, the sudden changes in printed dynamics, the wide separation between bass and treble, and last but not at all least, tempo. The light of the instrument, the faster the fingers go, and conversely with a heavier instrument.
Much research has yet to be done, but for the present we can feel sure that Beethoven would have loved the contemporary grand piano if he had lived in its time. However, he would probably have written his piano music quite differently. Today's host has been Miss Barbara Homquest, former Ann Arbor resident, now living in England. Miss Homquest talked about and performed on several pianos from Beethoven's era, now housed in the Colt Clavier collection, Bethesda and Kent England, the largest keyboard collection in the world, numbering nearly 100 specimens. You're invited to listen again next week at this same time for another program in the series, Beethoven, The Man Who Free Music. Program produced by Harry Welliver, at Barrow speaking for the National Educational Radio Network.
This program was originally produced in 1970 by the University of Michigan Broadcasting Service, and is currently being distributed by NPR, National Public Radio.
Series
Beethoven: The Man Who Freed Music
Episode Number
3
Episode
Holmquest: Beethoven - The Pianos He Knew and Played, and their Music
Producing Organization
University of Michigan Broadcasting Service
Contributing Organization
University of Maryland (College Park, Maryland)
AAPB ID
cpb-aacip/500-c53f302t
If you have more information about this item than what is given here, or if you have concerns about this record, we want to know! Contact us, indicating the AAPB ID (cpb-aacip/500-c53f302t).
Description
Series Description
Beethoven: The Man Who Freed Music is a program from the University of Michigan Broadcasting Service and the National Educational Radio Network. The series focuses on Beethovens life and works through musical selections and lectures from faculty members at the University of Michigan. The program was originally produced in 1970 in celebration of the 200th anniversary of Beethovens birth, and was later distributed by National Public Radio.
Topics
Music
Biography
Education
Recorded Music
Media type
Sound
Duration
01:00:26
Embed Code
Copy and paste this HTML to include AAPB content on your blog or webpage.
Credits
Producing Organization: University of Michigan Broadcasting Service
AAPB Contributor Holdings
University of Maryland
Identifier: 70-15-3 (National Association of Educational Broadcasters)
Format: 1/4 inch audio tape
Duration: 01:00:00?
If you have a copy of this asset and would like us to add it to our catalog, please contact us.
Citations
Chicago: “Beethoven: The Man Who Freed Music; 3; Holmquest: Beethoven - The Pianos He Knew and Played, and their Music,” University of Maryland, American Archive of Public Broadcasting (GBH and the Library of Congress), Boston, MA and Washington, DC, accessed June 16, 2024, http://americanarchive.org/catalog/cpb-aacip-500-c53f302t.
MLA: “Beethoven: The Man Who Freed Music; 3; Holmquest: Beethoven - The Pianos He Knew and Played, and their Music.” University of Maryland, American Archive of Public Broadcasting (GBH and the Library of Congress), Boston, MA and Washington, DC. Web. June 16, 2024. <http://americanarchive.org/catalog/cpb-aacip-500-c53f302t>.
APA: Beethoven: The Man Who Freed Music; 3; Holmquest: Beethoven - The Pianos He Knew and Played, and their Music. Boston, MA: University of Maryland, American Archive of Public Broadcasting (GBH and the Library of Congress), Boston, MA and Washington, DC. Retrieved from http://americanarchive.org/catalog/cpb-aacip-500-c53f302t