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This section is not intended to be a review of existing CDs. Good critics have done this already, and are experts on the subject. I just wish to draw your attention to particular works and interpretations.
Title The transcriptions of Francisco Tarrega

Francesco Tarrega (1852-1909), of Catalan origin, is one of the pioneers of the guitar.

The first eleven variations of the CD are concerned with the works of Ludwig van Beethoven:

- Adagio of the Sonata Opus 27/2, called "Clair de Lune";
- Minuet of the Septet Opus 20;
- Fragment of the Allegretto of the 7th Symphony, opus 92;\
- Funeral March of the Sonata no. 12, Opus 26;
- Scherzo of the Sonata no. 2, opus 2;
- Adagio Cantabile of the Sonata no. 8, Opus 13;
- Theme with variations Opus 30;
- Andante of the Sonata no. 9, opus 47, "Kreutzer"
- Minuet no. 3, WoO 10;
- Largo Con Gran Espressione, Sonata no. 4, Opus 7.

Assuredly an astonishing disc, where Tarrega's virtuosity for composition shows all his finesse…

Cd Beethoven - Terrega's transcriptions
Ondine - 2003
Timo Korhonen, guitar
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Title Maurizio Kagel: the hearing of Beethoven
Cd Beethoven by  Maurizio Kagel
Harmonia Mundi - 2003

In 1969, Maurizio Kagel composed "Ludwig van", a work sub-titled "Hommage à Beethoven".

The objective of the composer was "to perform Beethoven as he heard it, that is to say, badly". This affirmation defined the difficulty of the task and the result is extremely interesting. The work on the frequencies, the distortions and the reinforced or omitted sounds is a vivid experience.

Here then, on the CD, the sound of the deafness of Beethoven in nine themes. A curiosity…and much more!

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Title Beethoven in contemporary music
Beethoven Pierre Henry
Pierre Henry
remixe sa dixième symphonie
Philips - 1998

In 1979, at the BeethovenHalle in Bonn, Pierre Henry created his "Tenth Symphony of Beethoven". This work obtained "the French Victories of Music" in 1988.

Ten years after the prize, Pierre Henry created a remix of his tenth symphony.

The first hearing is without doubt not easy. A contemporary composer, Pierre Henry researches the sounds, effects, sentiments…
But to draw out the ten movements, one after another, the harmony made and please the listener to understand the composer's admiration for Ludwig van Beethoven.

A surprising work and good to hear and re-hear.

Beethoven Pierre Henry
Pierre Henry
La dixième symphonie de Beethoven
Philips - 1998
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Title Flamenco Fantasy
Cd Beethoven Flamenco
Emi - 2000
Guitare : Gustavo Montesano
Direction du Royal Philharmonic Orchestra : Carlos Gomez

This CD explores, through the genre of Flamenco, the great works of classical music. The guitar is accompanied by percussion and orchestra, sometimes voice.

On the programme, concerning Beethoven:

- Moonlight Rumba, after the Moonlight sonata, which is very rhythmic and which sometimes covers the delicate melody of the orchestra;

- Fandango for Elise, after a letter to Elise, is rather successful, with the notable presence of vocals to complete the harmony.

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Title Beethoven renovated - Saxophone Quintet

The CD, resolutely modern, and at times dissonant, contains the following arrangements for saxophone quintet:

- Overture to Coriolan, opus 62;

- The variations on "Rule Britannia", WoO79;

- The fifth symphony, opus 67;

- Ode to Joy, extracted from the ninth symphony, opus 125.

Cd Beethoven Saxophone
Quintessence Saxophone Quintet
CPO special - 2002
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Title Beethoven with ocean sounds
Cd Beethoven Ocean sounds
Chacra Alternative - 1991

Do not listen to this whilst driving your car: the calm and serenity are present, between two waves of the ocean. Everything is produced with synthesisers, but it is also possible to hear a harp, a flute and other instruments, played so slowly

Very strange!

On the menu:

- Ode to Joy (without voices);

- Moonlight Sonata…
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Title Classic meets Cuba

Beethoven meets Cuba music!

Sony Classical - 2002

"Remarkable" is the description which best fits these adaptations of classical melodies known by all. Although one may fear the worst, the listener is tamed first of all, then charmed, and finally delighted by this exceptional work of re-composition.

Many composers are thus treated, notably Mozart, Brahms, Chopin, Haydn and Beethoven:

- "Afrolise" is a version of "Fur Elise" full of colour;
- the "Pathetique" sonata is the object of a superb adaptation and complete with its three movements;
- the theme of the fifth symphony wins us over in a salsa not to be missed.

Bravo! Bravo! Bravo!

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Many thanks to Melanie PIDDOCKE for her translation of this page from French into English
© Dominique PREVOT
Music Sheet Plus

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