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An ode to Ludwig van Beethoven’s revolutionary masterpieces, his Eroica symphony.
In 1805, the world of music was startled by an avant-garde and explosive new work. Beethoven’s Third Symphony (Eroica) rudely broke the mold of the Viennese classical symphony and revealed a powerful new expressiveness, both personal and societal. Even a whiff of political revolution was woven into the work — it was originally inscribed to Napoleon Bonaparte, a dangerous hero for a composer dependent on conservative royal patronage. With the first 2 striking chords of this symphony, classical music was transformed.
In Beethoven’s Eroica, James Hamilton-Paterson reconstructs this great moment in Western culture, the shock of the music and the symphony’s long afterlife.
About James Hamilton-Paterson:
James Hamilton-Paterson is one of Britain’s most distinguished and reclusive writers. A travel writer, memoirist, poet and award-winning novelist, Hamilton-Paterson is also an accomplished musician. His novel Gerontius won a Whitbread Prize. His many books include the bestselling Empire of the Clouds, Marked for Death and Music: Stories.