Attendees were able to listen to the full sound of Beethoven Orchestra Bonn on Tuesday evening in the Eisenhower Auditorium.
The 63-musician orchestra played Ludwig van Beethoven’s Piano Concerto No. 5 in E-flat major and Symphony No. 5 in C minor under the direction of music director and conductor Stefan Blunier.
The Piano Concerto No. 5, also known as the Emperor, featured pianist Louis Lortie.
The rousing performance of the first movement included an improvisation like introduction by Lortie.
As the work progressed, Lortie infused his own style of playing into the concerto. Lortie played with passion, seen as his head bobbed to the music and heard as his fingers moved across the keys.
Red-faced with brows furrowed, Lortie’s concentration was evident as he played the work’s most difficult bars.
The movement built with fantastic chords from the violins, cellos, and the violas.
The second movement of the concerto slowed and brought in the piano softly to introduce the final movement of the concerto.
The final movement included a piano and timpani duet where the timpani resurrected the rhythm from the concerto’s first movement and the Lortie played the final chords with gusto.
After a standing ovation from the large crowd, Beethoven Orchestra Bonn took a 15-minute intermission.
The infamous Symphony No. 5, one of Beethoven’s most well-known works, was played by Beethoven Orchestra Bonn in a beautiful interpretation.
The theme throughout Symphony No. 5 is one that utilizes the horns, woodwinds, and even a piccolo. The theme of despair continues throughout the first and second movements.
The third movement, known as the Scherzo, is a frantic melody in which the musicians play extremely quickly to effectively bring about the theme.
The final movement, a grandiose finale for Beethoven Orchestra Bonn’s performance, was extremely dramatic and triumphant.
Blunier led Beethoven Orchestra Bonn in the performance with much flourishing of his wrists and head.
Under Blunier’s direction, Beethoven Orchestra Bonn presented both individual works as smooth, flowing compositions.
Karyn Hosler (sophomore- music education) said the concert was the best she’s seen.
“The full sound washed over the audience,” Hosler said. “The orchestra effortlessly produced this huge amount of sound for the audience to hear.”
Adaline Rosselle (sophomore-hotel restaurant and institutional management) said the performance was soothing but very powerful if you paid attention.
Rosselle said classical music is “real music” and through going to Beethoven Orchestra Bonn’s performance, she can appreciate the roots of where it came from and give classical music more credit.
Mara Reese (freshman-division of undergraduate studies) and Jeff Ross (freshman-business) both agreed that the performance was impressive.
“Classical music is not still being played because it is bad,” Ross said. He said classical music could be influential if introduced at an early age.
Hosler said Beethoven Orchestra Bonn played differently than an American orchestra, with a great physical intensity.