WQXR Declares November "Beethoven Awareness Month" - Multi-platform Festival Kicks Off with a Live Radio Event at Grand Central Station Tues, Nov 1

November is “Beethoven Awareness Month” on WQXR

“There are and will be a thousand princes. There is only one Beethoven.”

– Ludwig van Beethoven


(New York, NY, October 28, 2011) - This November, WQXR, New York City’s classical music station, is giving itself over to “the one.” Beethoven's music - monumental and personal, awe-inspiring and soul-touching, intimately familiar yet ever-ripe for discovery - encompasses virtually every aspect of the human spirit, making it uniquely resonant and relevant today.

Through a broad range of live events, on-line features, and of course, music, “Beethoven Awareness Month” will present programming that celebrates the iconic composer who is at once among the most exalted in the canon as well as classical music’s top crossover artist. 


Beethoven will pop up everywhere, from a live radio kick-off from Grand Central Station with the breakdancer Dister bustin’ moves to music from the Escher String Quartet, to the Schnitzel & Things truck on Mondays, where lunch service will be served with a side of Beethoven, to a “Where’s Beethoven?” photo contest, in which a bust of the composer hides in plain sight at New York landmarks, to a 12-hour marathon of Beethoven’s piano sonatas performed by some of classical music’s brightest rising stars, including Joyce Yang and Jonathan Biss, in WQXR’s innovative event venue, The Jerome L. Greene Performance Space.  

The WQXR airwaves and live stream will feature some of the finest recordings of Beethoven’s works, as well as a live broadcast of Orchestre Révolutionnaire et Romantique from Carnegie Hall. WQXR.org will offer an all-Beethoven stream for the entire month. 

“To the connoisseur and the uninitiated alike, Beethoven is undoubtedly a legend,” said Graham Parker, Vice President, WQXR. “Beethoven Awareness Month is a multi-faceted festival that will sing his praises all throughout November – live, on-air, and on-line – so listeners can truly discover Beethoven, whether they’re listening for the first time or uncovering a rare gem they didn’t already know.  We’ll offer something for everyone, from the sublime and serious to the contemporary and playful.” 

Highlights are below. The full schedule is available at www.wqxr.org/beethoven.


Live Events

All Aboard Beethoven! Kick-Off Event at Grand Central Station
Tuesday, November 1, 7:30-9:30am
The festival kicks off with a live radio event at Grand Central Station! The Escher String Quartet will perform, Dister will pop and lock to the sounds of the famed composer, and WQXR host Elliott Forrest will quiz passersby on Beethoven trivia and offer special giveaways and live updates from Michael Jordan's Steakhouse N.Y.C.


Beethoven Sonata Marathon
November 20, starting at 11 a.m.
All 32 of Beethoven's epochal piano sonatas will be performed live at The Greene Space at WQXR. Inon Barnaton, Alessio Bax, Jonathan Biss, Jeremy Denk, Benjamin Hochman, Joyce Yang and other notable Beethoven interpreters will be playing the sonatas, along with rising stars from the Juilliard School.


Beethoven and Schnitzel: Austrian Favorites Combined
Every Monday in November, the Schnitzel & Things truck will park in WQXR’s Soho neighborhood and join in the month-long celebration of their fellow Austrian. From 11:30am – 3pm, the truck’s radio will be tuned to 105.9 FM for customers to enjoy while waiting in line.


On-Line at WQXR.org

Where’s Beethoven?
WQXR.org will host a playful game, Where's Beethoven?. Each weekday, participants will be presented with a new photo of Beethoven’s bust placed at a different location somewhere in New York City. WQXR.org visitors and Facebook followers who correctly guess the location of Beethoven’s bust will be entered into a weekly drawing for CDs and other prizes.


24/7 Beethoven Stream
A 24-hour, all-Beethoven stream will be available on WQXR.org throughout November, featuring not only the masterpieces, but also seldom-heard works.


Café Concerts
Also at WQXR.org, some of today’s most acclaimed artists will perform Beethoven each week in WQXR’s signature video series. Performers include including Mikhail Simonyan, The Miró Quartet, and The Cypress Quartet.


On Air at 105.9 FM

All of WQXR’s destination programs, including Symphony Hall, Movies on the Radio, All Ears with Terrance McKnight, and Exploring Music, will feature Beethoven-related programming.


Thanksgiving Day, November 24, will be an all-Beethoven day on WQXR, featuring holiday greetings from musicians and WQXR staff.

In addition, as part of the Carnegie Hall Live series, Orchestre Révolutionnaire et Romantique will perform on Wednesday, November 16 at 8 p.m. Artistic Director and Conductor Sir John Eliot Gardiner will lead a program of three Beethoven compositions: “Egmont Overture,” “Symphony No. 5,” and “Symphony No. 7.”


On-Line at Q2 Music

On Q2 Music, listeners will be able to enjoy a variety of contemporary reactions to Beethoven's inspiring legacy.


Spotlight on Game-Changing Composers
Each week throughout November, Q2 Music will shine a spotlight on different game-changing and rabidly creative composers with interviews and music. Featured composers will include Michael Gordon, Timothy Andres, Missy Mazzoli and Tyondai Braxton.  This feature will culminate in the Q2 Music webcast premiere of Michael Gordon’s “Rewriting Beethoven's Seventh Symphony.”

The New Canon
On Friday, November 4 at 1pm, host Olivia Giovetti will be joined by powerhouse pianist Jeremy Denk to consider, “Who are the modern-day Beethovens? And is such a question still relevant, or even possible?”


Q2 Music’s weekday show devoted to the spectrum of keyboard music will feature exclusive videos with and shows hosted by pianist-in-residence and Beethoven scholar Jed Distler.


The Legacy of the Piano Concerto
This program will explore the rich musical world of the early 19th century and the other virtuosic pianist-composers who were successful at the time, but ultimately eclipsed by Beethoven.  Featured composers will include Ignaz Moscheles, Henry Charles Litolff and Wilhelm Taubert, and their concertos will be paired with contemporary versions by iconic composers such as Esa-Pekka Salonen, Avner Dorman, Gavin Bryars, Marc-Andre Dalbavie, Peter Lieberson, and more.


Full Q2 Music schedule available at www.wqxr.org/q2music


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WQXR 105.9 FM and www.wqx.org is New York City’s only all-classical music station, immersing listeners in the city’s rich musical life. WQXR presents new and landmark classical recordings as well as live concerts from the Metropolitan Opera, the Chamber Music Society of Lincoln Center, and the New York Philharmonic, among other city venues. WQXR broadcasts essential shows such as the Metropolitan Opera Radio Saturday Matinee Broadcasts, the New York Philharmonic This Week on Thursday evenings, the McGraw-Hill Companies Young Artists Showcase on Wednesday evenings, and Symphony Hall each weeknight. For listeners in search of the new, WQXR also operates Q2 Music, an online music stream dedicated to contemporary classical composers, cross-genre adventures, and performances from New York City’s edgier venues. WQXR.org provides essential playlist info for online listening, as well as original content, host blogs, NYC cultural news, and videos. The free WQXR App allows listeners to take WQXR with them wherever they go.


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