Beethoven Fries
"Whoever wants to know something about me, they should look attentively at my pictures and there seek to recognise what I am and what I want." (Gustav Klimt)

The Beethovenfries which was painted by Klimt in 1901 for the 14th Vienna Secession shows yearning for happiness of mankind and is related to Wagner's interpretation of Beethoven's 9th symphony.
Littel Ludwig


This wonderful concerto was composed in 1806. The first performance by Franz Clement was not successful, however after the performance 1844 in London directed by Felix Mendelssohn it became very successful and is now one of the best known violin concertos. On the right side you see a performance by Itzhak Perlman together with the Berlin Philharmonic Orchestra under Seiji Ozawa at the Vienna Musikverein (Herbert von Karajan Memorial Concert, 2019)


Symphony No. 5 in c minor (op. 67)

The concert venue was freezing cold; it was more than two hours into the mammoth 4 hour program before the 5th symphony began; and the orchestra played poorly enough that day to force the nearly deaf composer to stop the ensemble partway into one passage and start again from the very beginning. It was a very unfortunate start for what would soon become the world’s most recognisable piece of classical music: Beethovens Symphony No. 5. The unusual thing was the Premiere was directed by Beethoven himself on the conductor podium. The Academy (which was the name for such an evening concert) lasted for more than 4 hours. In addition to the 5th Symphony which was the highlight on this evening and Beethovens greatest achievement in his career so far, there was also the 6th Symphony or the Piano Concerto No 4 and other pieces. Some consider this evening as the greatest classical concert in history.

(Theresa Mauritsch)

On the right side you can see the Vienna Philharmonic Orchestra under Christian Thielemann at the Vienna Musikverein.

Symphony No. 6 in F major (op. 68)

Beethoven loved nature and long walks. He was a great lover of nature and had a very intimate relationship with nature – he continued his daily walks in all-weather until his death. Beethoven  also wrote many works about the nature.

The best known is the 6th symphony:

Symphony No. 6, nicknamed „Pastorale“, was composed in 1807/1808 at the same time as the 5th symphony, allegedly in “Nussdorf” and “Grinzing”, then the suburbs of Vienna, today part of the 19th district of Vienna. It is the only symphony of Beethoven to consist of five movements. The Schreiberbach flows between the two towns: „Here I wrote the scene by the brook, and the golden bunting up there, the quails, nightingales and cuckoos all around. „The playing time is approximately 43 minutes. „Sinfonia caracteristica“ and „Sinfonia pastorella“ was the name of the 6th symphony in the first sketches, and it was only at the time of printing that Beethoven called it „Pastoral Symphony or Memories of Country Life“. Awakening cheerful feelings upon arrival in the country”, as the first movement of Beethoven’s“Pastoral ”, unites here with the spring air around Esterházy Palace: the idyllic stream bank, the rustic dancing pleasure and the thunderstorm, all of this is reflected in Beethoven’s Symphony No. 6.

(Amelie Rieß)

On the right side you can hear to the Orchestra Vienna Academy under Martin Haselböck.

Piano Concerto No 4 in G major (op. 58)

The Piano concerto No. 4 is according to many the most beautiful piano concerto. On the left side you can hear Rudolf Buchbinders wonderful interpretation together with the Vienna Philharmonic Orchestra at the Musikverein in 2012.

This was first performed at Palais Lobkowitz and the first public performance was on December 22nd at the Theater an der Wien together with the 5th and the 6th Symphony among others. Read more about this probably greatest concert in history you read in the comment of the 5th symphony.

(Viktoria Maresch)

On the right side you can hear to Rudolf Buchbinder and the Vienna Philharmonic Orchestra at the Musikverein 2012.


The famous Hammerklavier Sonata is usually recorded on a list of the most difficult pieces in Piano Music history. On the right side you can listen to Igor Levit’s interpretation.

maybe his greatest masterpiece

The Symphony No 9 is a choral symphony, the final Symphony. It was composed between 1822 and 1824. The Premiere was on 7th May 1824 at the Theater am Kärntnertor. This symphony is regarded by many critics and musicologists as Beethoven’s  greatest work and one of the supreme achievements in the history of western music. The Symphony is nicknamed the „choral symphony“. Using singers in a symphony was a wild idea. The words are sung during the final movement by four vocal soloists and a choir. They were taken from the „Ode to Joy“, a poem written by Friedrich Schiller in 1785 and revised in 1803 with text additions made by Beethoven.

(Ines Vögele)

On the right side you can listen to the interpretation of the 9th Symphony under Daniel Barenboim performed at the Proms 2012.


Beethovenfries Wikimedia 14.12.2020