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The Rui Cunha Foundation presents on Monday, September 26th at 6:30pm, a special session of “Music Illustrated Talks” at the FRC Gallery, entitled “Gateway to the Romantic: Beethoven the Giant” and led by pianist and teacher Leung Hio Meng, in anticipation of the concert with the same name that will take place on September 30th in the Small Auditorium of Macau Cultural Center (CCM).

Like the first event, which took place on July 6th, 2021, under the title “The Pillars of Romantic Music for Piano”, Professor Leung Hio Meng will once again lecture a piano master class for the general public, where he will talk about Ludwig van Beethoven and his prodigy.

The music of the great German composer, who lived between 1770 and 1827, captivated audiences and was part of the repertoire of very famous violinists, pianists, chamber music formations and symphony orchestras. He influenced those who came after him, namely Wagner, Schubert, Mahler, Strauss and Boulez, to the musicians and composers of today, such as the Beatles, Pink Floyd or Genesis.

Having created a grandiose and sublime work, which in the history of music marks the transition from the Classical to the Romantic period, Beethoven has a prominent place in the great hall of Humanity, integrating the time capsule of the Voyager Golden Record, on a journey since 1977 through space. Today many scholars consider him the greatest composer of the 19th century, others distinguish him as one of the few men who deserve the adjective “genius”.

According to the theme’s introduction, «during his middle creative period [about 1802 to 1812], Beethoven had exerted the greatest influence on later composers. Some of his most famous and popular masterpieces were composed at this time, and the piano sonatas are particularly memorable and attractive. When we talk about such sonatas, the first impressions that come to our mind are emotion, pain, struggle, passion, sometimes even the dark side of his character. This is certainly Beethoven’s Dionysian side. At the same time, some of this music is full of humor, lightheartedness, peace of mind, positive attitude, etc. Therefore, the Apollonian side of Beethoven is fully revealed. The four piano sonatas in this talk will certainly prove these arguments», promises the guest professor.

Leung Hio Meng (梁曉鳴) is a pianist, with a BA in Music (1987), Masters in Piano Performance (1989) and Music Theory (1993), and a PhD in Musical Arts (2000), degrees obtained from the University of Kansas, in USA. In addition to the extensive list of academic merit awards and distinctions, he is now Visiting Associate Professor at the Macau Polytechnic University (UPM), where he has been teaching Musical Art since 2018.

The session will be presented in English.

Admission is free.

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