Sunday, January 12, 2020

Welcome to 2020 and Happy Beethoven Year!

The year 2020 marks the 30th anniversary of German reunification, which we will celebrate and reflect upon in October. This year also marks the 250th anniversary of Ludwig van Beethoven’s birth year. Although we don’t know the actual date of his birth, we know that the German composer was born in Bonn and baptized on December 17, 1770. And due to his worldwide influence and contributions, the German government declared Beethoven a “matter of national importance” in 2016 and established funding for the 2020 anniversary celebrations.

Throughout the year, Germany will host a number of events in honor of Beethoven, with some of the biggest ones taking place in Bonn – the city of his birth. As the epicenter of the anniversary celebrations, Bonn will host more than 300 events in honor of the composer. Throughout Germany, there will be around 1,000 concerts, opera performances, festivals and exhibitions surrounding Beethoven.

But the celebrations don’t end in Germany; Beethoven’s influence can be seen worldwide, and many other countries – including the US – are honoring him throughout the year.

Beethoven is most famous for his nine symphonies, which have been called the cornerstones of Western civilization. His two most famous ones are the Fifth Symphony and the Ninth Symphony. Although his early years were spent in Germany, he eventually studied in Vienna under Mozart and Haydn and called the city his home. The city of Vienna is preparing to mark the 200th anniversary of his death in the year 2027.

To celebrate the life and works of one of the world’s most famous composers, we will be sharing music, history, and information about this legendary figure throughout the year! 

Nicole Glass, Editor, The Week in Germany

Picture: The Beethoven House in Vienna


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