Wednesday, 17 September 2014


Llyr Williams * Elias String Quartet * Peter Sheppard Skaerved City Halls, Glasgow 
25 – 28 September 2014

Beethoven’s Violinists – a musical lecture 
Peter Sheppard Skaerved (speaker/violin)
Beethoven began his working life as a professional string player, and nurtured close collaborations with some of the great violinists of his time throughout his career. This illustrated talk includes the UK premiere of a caprice by Franz Clement (to whom Beethoven dedicated his Violin Concerto), recently discovered in Norway by British violinist and Viotti Lecturer at the Royal Academy of Music, Peter Sheppard Skaerved.
Thursday 25 September, 7.30pm Recital Room, City Halls (unreserved seating)
Tickets: £5
Running time: 1hr

Early Beethoven - Sonatas & QuartetsLlyr Williams piano and Elias String Quartet
Beethoven: Sonatas Op.2 Nos.1–3
Beethoven: Quartets Op.18 Nos.2 & 3
All of the music in this concert was written by Beethoven in his twenties: a young man making his way in Vienna and learning from the masters, Haydn and Mozart, whose influences are apparent in these works. 

Llyr Williams opens his weekend of performances with the first three sonatas Beethoven published (and counterbalances them with the last three sonatas on Sunday). The Elias String Quartet offers a sharply contrasted pairing of Beethoven’s early string quartets.
Friday 26 September, 7.30pm
Grand Hall, City Halls
£15 (£13)
Running time: 2hrs 10 mins including interval

talk: Getting to the Heart of Beethoven’s First Three Sonatas
Join pianist Llyr Williams as he explores Beethoven’s first three sonatas from a pianist’s perspective, questioning what they tell us about Beethoven as a performer.
6.15pm - 7pm: Recital Room, City Halls (unreserved seating)
Free entry to ticket holders of the 7.30pm concert on first come, first served basis

Post-concert event: Beethoven in the Bar
Beethoven loved a drink and conversation in a tavern as much as the next man. Join the artists in the bar to discuss tonight’s music, the great composer and more.
9.45pm - 10.30pm: Candleriggs Bar, City Halls
Free entry to ticket holders of the 7.30pm concert on first come, first served basis

For just £50 enjoy an exclusive pass to see every concert in this special weekend. Please note that these are strictly limited so book now on 0141 353 8000!


Beethoven’s Circle Beethoven’s approach to composition was fundamentally collaborative. He noted in his diary: “Every day, share a meal with musicians, so that you can discuss instruments, and techniques and such”. 

This resulted in a dynamic interrelationship between his music and pieces written by his friends, including Anton Reicha, the Rombergs and the young Ferdinand Ries. Peter Sheppard Skaerved and friends introduce some of Beethoven’s contemporaries and play their music.
Peter Sheppard Skaerved violin/speaker
Neil Heyde cello
Aaron Shorr piano
Anton Reicha: Overture ‘Sappho’
Andreas & Bernhard Romberg: Variations ‘Se Vuol Ballare’
Beethoven: Variations ‘Se Vuol Ballare’
Ferdinand Ries: E flat Sonata
Beethoven: Kakadu Variations
Saturday 27 September, 4pm
Recital Room, City Halls
(unreserved seating)
£7.50, Running time: Ihr

Talk: Getting To The Heart of Beethoven’s Quartet, Op.59 No.1
The Quartet Op.59 No.1 shocked Beethoven’s contemporaries as he strode into new territory - it was even described as ‘unplayable’. Join the Elias Quartet to explore it from the inside out.
6.15pm – 7pm: Recital Room, City Halls (unreserved seating)
Free entry to ticket holders of the 7.30pm concert on first come, first served basis

Postlude featuring Elias String Quartet Beethoven: Quartet No.11, Op.95 (“Serioso”)
A quartet Beethoven considered fit “for a small circle of connoisseurs and is never to be performed in public”, Op.95 is an astounding work – Beethoven’s shortest quartet, and one of his most rewarding. A delightful close to the day.
9.45pm – 10.15pm: Grand Hall, City Halls
Free entry to ticket holders of the 7.30pm concert


An illustrated talk: Getting To The Heart of Beethoven’s Last Three Sonatas
A musical journey like no other, Beethoven’s last three sonatas were written concurrently between 1820 and 1822. There is plentiful evidence to suggest that he viewed them as a cycle – ideas pass from one to the other and create an immense musical canvas. In advance of his performances of all three sonatas in the evening, join Llyr Williams for his personal insights and perspectives.
Sunday 28 September, 3.30pm
Recital Room, City Halls (unreserved seating)
Free but ticketed
Running time: 45 mins

Beethoven - The Late Quartets Elias String Quartet
Beethoven: Quartet No.12 in E flat, Op.127
Beethoven: Quartet No.13 in B flat, Op.130

Beethoven wrote his late quartets to commission, and often their gestation and composition overlapped. This was far from uncommon with him, but when it comes to these works, both completed in 1825, the miracle is how utterly different they are.
Sunday 28 September, 4.30pm
Grand Hall, City Halls, (reserved seating)
£10 (£8)
Running time: 1hr 50 mins including interval

Beethoven - The Last Three Sonatas
Llyr Williams piano
Beethoven: Sonatas Op.109, 110 and 111
Beethoven’s last three sonatas over a towering climax to his cycle of 32. Each is a great work in its own right, but grows in stature when heard as part of this cycle of three. There is plenty of debate regarding whether or not Beethoven intended them to be performed together like this, but it is indisputable that they make an epic musical journey.
Sunday 28 September, 7.30pm
Grand Hall, City Halls (reserved seating)
£10 (£8)
Running time: 1hr 15 mins with 2 short pauses

Middle Beethoven -Sonatas & Quartets 1801-08 
Llyr Williams piano Elias String Quartet
Beethoven: Sonata No.12 in A flat, Op.26
Beethoven: Sonatas Op.27 No.1 (Moonlight) and No.2 (Quasi una fantasia)
Beethoven: Quartet No.7 in F, Op.59 No.1
The music of Beethoven’s ‘middle period’ is dominated by maverick departures from the classical heritage of his youth. Unpredictable, ceaselessly inventive, this spirit of adventure and experiment manifests itself in innumerable ways, but most obviously in the freedom that he increasingly allows himself formally, harmonically and melodically. This concert offers a flavour of the sheer range of his output in just seven years, from 1801-1808.
Saturday 27 September, 7.30pm
Grand Hall, City Halls (reserved seating), £15 (£13)
Running time: 2hrs 10 mins including interval

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