Beethoven and his World

Ref: C3741502

Beethoven`s music is well-known, but any true understanding of its importance must also include knowledge of the conditions in which it was created and his personal response to the prevailing social and cultural mores of the era. This course will flesh out these issues, providing Learners with the opportunity to hear many of his masterworks with fresh ears.

Course aim

Beethoven is possibly the most influential musician in western civilization, both in his art and in the way in which he lived his life. Join us in as we explore just why his output will always excite and stimulate.

Do I need any particular skills or experience?

  • No skills or experience needed
  • Music lovers who already possess some knowledge of Beethoven`s music will find plenty to stimulate new ideas and listening experiences.

By the end of the course I should be able to:

  • Explain how Beethoven`s music both reflected and challenged the social; and cultural mores of his time.
  • Explain how Beethoven`s music drew on the traditions of the past and created new structures that anticipated future artistic developments.
  • Show how key works (e.g. the `Eroica` Symphony and the `Hammerklavier` Sonata) became paradigms of musical thinking that still offer challenges today.

How will I be taught?

  • The WEA tutor will use a range of different teaching and learning methods and encourage you and the group to be actively involved in your learning
  • We will be listening to many examples of Beethoven`s music on CD and other media methods of transmission.

What kind of feedback can I expect?

  • A range of informal activities will be used by the tutor to see what you are learning which may include quizzes, question and answer, small projects and discussion
  • You will be encouraged to share your work with the group and discuss your learning

What else do I need to know?

  • Nothing else is needed

Pre-course work, reading and information sources

  • No pre reading or pre course work is required
  • A desire to learn more regarding cultural and historical matters in general as well as about the music itself would be helpful; all these aspects will be built on during the course.

What can I do next?

  • Learners should seek out examples of the music of Beethoven on CDs, the radio or in concert performances with an increased of its status, its context and its significance in western culture.

Download full course outline

Beethoven and his World Course Outline

Enrolment Conditions

You can enrol online if you meet all of the following requirements:

  • are paying the standard fee or are on any of the qualifying benefits
  • are paying with a credit/debit card or are not paying a fee because of a qualifying benefit
  • have a valid email address
  • have been resident in the UK, EU or EEA for the last 3 years
  • are aged 19 years or older on 1st September 2017
  • have read and accept the standard terms and conditions
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