Wednesday, February 9, 2011

The King's Speech -- Ode to Beethoven

Ah, Beethoven -- what would gridographers do without him? Those "smalls" that help support crosswords (VON, FUR, ODE) have classical applications: Ludwig VON Beethoven composed "FÜR Elise" and "ODE to Joy" (from the 9th Symphony). And if you need four vowels in a six-letter word (who doesn't?), his EROICA Symphony (No. 3) does the trick.

Off-grid, a reader asked about the music soundtrack to the awesome "speech" portion of The King's Speech. Remember those final scenes between Geoffrey Rush and Colin Firth? Unbelievable.

Dear Reader, here it is -- the 2nd Movement (Allegretto) of Beethoven's 7th Symphony in A Major.

I've never met a Leonard Bernstein video that I didn't like.



Anonymous said...

I was wondering if I was the only one who thought listening to German music while England was planning to go to war with them was a tad ironic.

nanpilla said...

Loved the movie. Had to search to find it before it got all the Oscar buzz.

Going to see Michael Tilson Thomas conduct the 7th in Philly at the Kimmel this weekend. Can't wait. Thanks for the preview!

La Liz said...

Anon, how interesting. Good point. I hadn't thought of Beethoven as a German composer, and what that meant in the pre-WWII context. Beethoven seems like a planet unto himself, an orb that transcends even his "Classical" designation. He seems to predict the Romantics that would succeed him. Interesting irony!

nanpilla: Enjoy the concert. Nice timing, given the popularity of "The King's Speech."

I love your city!

Joanne said...

Lucky for me that I know a bit about music otherwise I'd probably find crossword puzzles to be intolerable. As it is, I've got all the ODEs and the FURs and the VONs down. What a beautiful piece.

T-Rex said...

Anonymous, oh please! Beethoven is universal, and the Allegretto of his 7th symphony is magnificent. First there are the dirge-like, lock-step minor chords, then the lyrical counterpoint that emerges from them like a phoenix rising from the ashes. There couldn't be a better parallel for the way that the newly crowned king, terrified because of his speech defect, rises brilliantly to the occasion when his country needs him the most.

La Liz said...

T-Rex, very nice concert notes -- beautifully put. I suspect you've spent some time on the podium. Your description makes me want to sit down and follow the score! Thank you.