December 2020 marks the 250th birthday of the great composer Ludwig van Beethoven. It is not known specifically which day in December he was born, but since he was baptized on December 17th, we know he was born sometime before then.
To celebrate, I chose to listen to his Symphony No. 6 “Pastoral”, since I figured in times of worry and anxiety, such as what we have now with this pandemic, I needed to imagine beautiful, peaceful images of nature. Beethoven was a nature lover, and with his sixth symphony, he aimed to paint pictures of various pastoral scenes, ranging from peaceful walks in pastures to country dancing. The last two movements are my favorite parts of the symphony. The fourth movement depicts a brutal, intense thunderstorm, but after that, the music transitions into the fifth movement, which gloriously depicts the passing of the storm and the arrival of a blissful paradise of sunshine. This part made me cry tonight. I think we all need that message of hope right now, as we wait in dark times for the day when we can step out of our homes into the daylight. I have posted the music below; hope you enjoy it!
Happy birthday Beethoven, and thank you for sharing your musical masterpieces with the world. And thank you for giving me this emotional moment tonight, at a time when we all need it the most.