BEYOND BACH CONCERT SERIES
Music of Humanity
October 27 at 4 PM
Church of the Redeemer, Baltimore
Mozart’s Symphony No. 40
Beethoven’s Symphony No. 2, Op. 36
Mozart’s 19 th -century biographer Otto Jahn declared Mozart’s Symphony No. 40 in G minor or
the “Great G minor symphony” as “a work of pain and grieving.” This haunting composition is
only one of two symphonies that Mozart wrote in minor keys often eliciting stronger and darker
emotions. This reflects both his interest in the popular “Sturm und Drang” movement and the
personal turmoil of Mozart’s life. He composed Symphony No. 40 during a dark time—he was
facing mounting debts and dealing with the death of his infant daughter. The “Great G minor
symphony” echoes his personal struggle, and it has become one of his most famous works.
Likewise, Beethoven’s Second Symphony was composed during a dark time for the artist.
Battling severe depression and thoughts of suicide as his hearing deteriorated, Beethoven wrote
an overwhelmingly energetic, humorous, and playful piece. The fourth movement with sounds of
hiccups, groans, flatulence, and belches is profoundly funny. When it premiered in 1803, some in
the audience found the music bizarre, but it has stood the test of time as a work of great depth
and humanity. After all, laughter can be a healing balm during life’s most difficult times. Played
together, Mozart’s Mozart’s Symphony No. 40 and Beethoven’s Symphony No 2, will
contemplate the pathos and buffoonery of the human condition.
Tickets: $30 Regular / $32 Door or $55 for Beyond Bach Concert Series Pass