Ensembles, universities and arts organizations around the world spent the past few years planning concerts and scholarly events throughout 2020 to celebrate the 250th anniversary of Ludwig van Beethoven’s birth. Then the COVID-19 pandemic arrived, darkening concert halls in communities near and far and reining in what was supposed to be Beethoven’s big year.
The German composer and pianist, who was baptized on Dec. 17, 1770, and likely born a day or two before, is known for nine symphonies, numerous piano sonatas and string quartets and one opera. His music remains popular today, and it’s frequently programmed by orchestras and chamber music series everywhere. Thanks to the “Great Composers” film series, local fans have an opportunity to celebrate Beethoven’s birthday with a music-filled tribute that was four years in the making.
“Concerto — A Beethoven Journey” will be screened at 7 p.m. Wednesday on the big screen at the Paramount Theater.
Director Phil Grabsky’s 2015 film follows pianist Leif Ove Andsnes as he travels with the Mahler Chamber Orchestra to perform major piano works by Beethoven around the world. The film examines the power of Beethoven’s five piano concerti and dives into a deeper examination of the composer’s life and career.
Tickets are $15; seniors pay $13, and students get in for $11. Seating capacity will be reduced significantly for the event to help protect audience members and Paramount staff members and volunteers.
Be sure to wear your masks and be prepared to observe proper physical distancing. To reserve your space, go to theparamount.net or call the box office at (434) 979-1333.