4 February 2020

Labor Beethoven 2020
Festival of Contemporary Music for Beethoven’s Anniversary Year
Concerts, installations, music theatre, exhibition, lectures, performances
12–18 March 2020, Akademie der Künste, Hanseatenweg

Akademie der Künste presents Labor Beethoven 2020, a contemporary reading of Beethoven's anniversary year with a focus on experimentation. The festival will condense the musical and interdisciplinary output achieved over four years of artistic collaboration among young composers from Basel, Tel Aviv and Thessaloniki into the week of 12–18 March.

Beethoven's situation around the year 1800 was marked by new approaches to many fields, not only music. Some academic disciplines, such as physics and mathematics, laid the foundations for a new understanding of the world's structure beyond the tangible, later completed by Einstein. This period of new beginnings includes the physicist Ernst Florens Friedrich Chladni's work with acoustics in experimental physics that substantiated audiovisual transformations; Anton Reicha's practische Beispiele, which questioned nearly every convention with music that experimented with modulation, metre and form as well as compound time signatures and out-of-tune piano; and Beethoven's experiments in the Symphony No. 3 (Eroica), the Sonata No. 17, op. 31, no. 2 (The Tempest), and cycles of variations.

The festival envisions a space in which ideas from the year 1802 are explored. Here the experimental spirit of Beethoven's age is brought together with the composers' current examinations of such themes as space, instrumentation and form, resulting in a kaleidoscope of concerts, lecture performances and music theatre. The accompanying exhibition, Labor Beethoven 1802–2020, gathers materials, experiments in sound and listening as well as installations that depict and access the space in which thought and experimentation give rise to the project Labor Beethoven.

A number of guest projects will set special accents: The Beethoven expert William Kindermann will hold a lecture performance on the sonata The Tempest. The electronic musician Marcus Schmickler invites you to an experimental performance on Mauricio Kagel's deconstructing Ludwig Van. The opera company Novoflot will present a new version of the opera Fidelio based on a music-theatre installation. And the sound artist Werner Cee will exhibit a walk-in, multi-perspective sound topography of the Pastoral Symphony, comprised of fragmented recordings of the Rundfunk-Sinfonieorchester Berlin.

Labor Beethoven is a project of the Music Section of the Akademie der Künste, Berlin, and is directed by Caspar Johannes Walter (artistic director, Basel, Akademie der Künste), Dimitri Papageorgiou (Thessaloniki) and Ruben Seroussi (Tel Aviv).

With Faidra Chafta Douka, Manolis Ekmektsoglou, Batya Frenklakh, Eva Gentner Andrea Heilrath, Akkad Izre'el, Anda Kryeziu, Adrian Nagel, Dimitri Papageorgiou, Ari Rabenu, Eleni Ralli, Guy Rauscher, Ruben Seroussi, Thanos Sakellaridis and Caspar Johannes Walter.

Event dates
Labor Beethoven 2020
Festival of Contemporary Music for the Beethoven Anniversary
Concerts, installations, music theatre, exhibition, lectures, performances
12–18 March 2020
Exhibition Labor 1802–2020 and sound installation by Werner Cee, daily
12 Mar 7 – 11 pm, 13 Mar 2 – 8 pm, 14 + 15 Mar 12 – 9 pm, 16–18 Mar 5 – 9 pm
Akademie der Künste, Hanseatenweg 10, 10557 Berlin
Concert with works by Anda Kryeziu, Adrian Nagel, Eleni Ralli on 13 Mar 8 pm
Akademie der Künste, Pariser Platz 4, 10117 Berlin

For more information: www.labor-beethoven-2020.de 

Press contact on behalf of the Akademie der Künste:
AMIONT Musik & Kultur, Dominique Schweizer
M. +49 (0)176 96572527, ds@amiont.de