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Video streamed event: Beethoven’s Prometheus

Watch online on www.youtube.comPhilharmonia OrchestraRecorded at Battersea Arts Centre, London, United Kingdom
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Friday 04 December 202019:30

An ancient Greek creation story tells of Prometheus, who breathed life into lumps of clay to create human beings, and stole fire from the gods to give them light and understanding.

Beethoven wrote his only ballet score for a production of The Creatures of Prometheus in 1801, in just eleven days. It was a huge success, and remained one of his most popular works throughout his lifetime. Beyond the well-known Overture lies music of Classical grace, including the theme that later became the Finale of the ‘Eroica’ Symphony.

In the ballet, the gift of fire is interpreted as a metaphor for the civilizing power of science and the arts. To guide us through this timeless but also timely story, our Principal Conductor Esa-Pekka Salonen is joined by Beethoven superfan Stephen Fry. He retells the myth in a new version by Gerard McBurney.

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