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Verizon Hall at the Kimmel Center for the Performing Arts will be rededicated as Marian Anderson Hall, home of The Philadelphia Orchestra

All Beethoven key art. All Beethoven key art. All Beethoven key art.

All Beethoven

Feb 29, 2024, 7:30 PM
Mar 01, 2024, 2:00 PM
Mar 02, 2024, 8:00 PM

This event has passed.

Performance Details

Nathalie Stutzmann Conductor
Haochen Zhang Piano

Beethoven Piano Concerto No. 5 (“Emperor”)
Beethoven Symphony No. 7

Program Notes

The glory of Beethoven’s genius illuminates these concerts. He wrote his Fifth Piano Concerto in 1809, as Napoleon’s army advanced upon Vienna. Trouble surrounded the composer: Increasingly deaf, he had begun to curtail his public performances, and with his own house hemmed in by the French forces who surrounded the city, he was forced into hiding in his brother’s cellar. Still, the work that emerged was one of his noblest, from its bold opening movement through the hushed and haunting Adagio to the dazzling finale. Despite the fact that Napoleon’s boot-prints are all over the history of this work, its “Emperor” moniker was applied years after its premiere, more in reference to the grandeur of the music than to any specific sovereign.

Grand and dramatic, Beethoven’s “Emperor” Concerto won famous fans early: Felix Mendelssohn performed the English premiere in 1829 and Franz Liszt numbered it among his favorites. It’s performed here by internationally acclaimed pianist Haochen Zhang, who was awarded the Gold Medal in the 2009 Van Cliburn International Piano Competition. Zhang recorded all of Beethoven’s piano concertos with Principal Guest Conductor Nathalie Stutzmann and the Orchestra in 2022.

Beethoven’s Symphony No. 7 is a joyous call to dance—high-spirited, whirling, and lyrical. Its light-heartedness may have been influenced by a small project Beethoven had taken on around this time, arranging Scottish, Irish, and Welsh folksongs for an Edinburgh music publisher. One of those songs, “Save me from the grave and wise,” counsels the listener: “On! my careless laughing heart, O dearest Fancy let me find thee; Let me but from sorrow part, And leave this moping world behind me.” No better respite from a moping world than Beethoven’s Seventh!

Arrive early!

“I Wish to Say”
Friday, March 1, 2024 
12:30 PM – 2:00 PM | Commonwealth Plaza | GTC Café

Don’t miss an opportunity to express your voice to the highest office in the land!

A student public art performance in the Commonwealth Plaza encourages concertgoers to get their civic opinions heard using vintage typewriters. These messages will be collected and posted directly to the White House and printed alongside original poster artworks created by Revolution School students under the guidance of graduate students enrolled in the Book Arts and Printmaking program at the University of the Arts. “I Wish To Say” aims to investigate public opinion about critical social issues of the day through a blend of old and new media and to encourage an open dialogue and exchange of ideas. Learn more at

Presented by Ensemble Arts Philly in support of a collaborative public art project and performance involving graduate students from the University of the Arts and high school students from Revolution School.

Verizon Hall

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