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Beethoven's masterwooks on program

Soloist Masahiro Miyauchi performs with the SPO on October 25, 26. - Submitted
Soloist Masahiro Miyauchi performs with the SPO on October 25, 26.
— image credit: Submitted

Roll over, John Lennon. The Sooke Philharmonic Orchestra will be playing Beethoven at the Sooke Community Hall on October 25, at 7:30 p.m., for this year’s “Celebration of Young Artists” concert.

The program features two of his masterworks: Symphony No. 3, the Eroica, and Piano Concerto No. 5, the Emperor. The Lord of the Rings Symphonic Suite by Howard Shore, arranged by John Whitney, is also on the program.

The piano soloist is Masahiro Miyauchi, who won the 2014 Don Chrysler Concerto Competition last April. This 17-year-old from Japan is studying with May Ling Kwok at the Victoria Conservatory of Music, and is completing Grade 12 at Victoria High.

Music students from the Sooke and Victoria School Districts will be joining the orchestra for the Symphonic Suite.

The Eroica, completed by Beethoven in 1804, and the Emperor Piano Concerto, which was finished in 1811, were both written in Vienna, as were most of his works. We are all familiar with Ludwig van Beethoven, the moody non-conformist, who went deaf at an early age but didn’t stop composing music.

Maestro Norman Nelson had this to say about what it’s like to play Beethoven:

“Playing Haydn and Mozart is like the warmth of the sun that dissipates our petty problems and reminds us that the world’s garden is full of roses.

“But if it’s Beethoven on the program, you can bet your boots your miseries will compound and an intense rawness will take over, with lots of stress and strife. In spite of his cosying up to Europe’s royals and aristocrats, Beethoven was emphatically on the side of the common man and mostly his music is unrelenting in its angst.

“With Mozart you cuddle and stroke your instrument. With Beethoven it’s smash and grab.”

An exciting evening! The concert will be presented again on the following night, October 26, at 7:30 p.m., at Farquhar Auditorium at U Vic.

Tickets are available at the usual outlets, on-line and at the door. Young people under 16 are free.

Season’s tickets are available for all Sooke concerts, at regular and seniors’ rates.

See www.sookephil.ca for details.

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