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Beethoven 2020: Beethoven's First and Last Words
Petaluma Historical Library & Museum
Petaluma, CA
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Online sales have ended. Tickets are still available at the door: $25 Downstairs ($40 Upstairs if still available) - Cash or checks made out to PMA Preferred. We look forward to seeing you!


Beethoven 2020: Beethoven's First and Last Words
Petaluma Museum Association & Sky Hill Cultural Alliance are pleased to present

Beethoven 2020:  Beethoven's First and Last Words
Featuring the Trinity Alps Chamber Players

Concert: Sunday, January 12
4:00 PM
Complimentary wine & cheese
Petaluma Historical Library & Museum
Tickets: $25 Downstairs/$40 Balcony (limited)
Students Admitted Free

The Petaluma Historical Library and Museum will begin their Beethoven 2020 series with a program called First and Last Words. They welcome the Trinity Alps Chamber Players, who will present a concert experience that explores Beethoven's First Piano Sonata, Op. 2, No.1, alongside his final work for piano, the Six Bagatelles, Op. 126 and his last major composition, the String Quartet in F Major, Op. 135.

This concert is the first of the Beethoven 2020 Series offered at the Petaluma Historical Library and Museum, which celebrates the 250th year of Ludwig van Beethoven, who was born in 1770 and died in 1827.

The Trinity Alps Chamber Players have offered annual explorations of Beethoven's Late Style since 2016, with a special focus on the string quartets and piano music. Composed near the end of Beethoven's life, when Beethoven was suffering from serious illness and increasingly isolated due to deafness, his late string quartets are seen as some of the most complex and influential music ever written. These quartets contains everything, says the ensemble director and pianist Ian Scarfe, Beethoven manages to cover all of the expressive terrain  there is darkness and despair, there is joy and light-hearted dance, there is inner peace and thoughtfulness, and all of it is framed in the context of a discussion between four instruments: a quartet of string players.

The program will feature a contrast of firsts and lasts. Scarfe will perform Beethoven's first Piano Sonata in F Minor Op. 2 No. 1, alongside his very last work for piano, the Six Bagatelles Op. 126. The Sonata was written in 1795 when Beethoven was only 25 years old and not yet a superstar, but nevertheless shows his fiery dramatic personality and willingness to shock his audiences out of their seats.  The Six Bagatelles were written in the 1820s, when Beethoven was well into the experimentations of his late style. They offer wonderful, and sometimes hyperactive, examples of the wide range of expressive music, contained into a seamless set of six character pieces.

The finale of the program will be Beethoven's String Quartet in F Major, Op. 135, the last major work he composed, written in 1826. This quartet also moves quickly between styles  from charming and elegant to deeply profound. Beethoven gives the final section of the work a title: A Difficulty Decision, with two different musical themes presented to the audience. The first is a question: Must it be? - the second, a definitive answer It MUST be!.

Scarfe will be joined by violinists Ellen McGehee and James Keene, violist Stephen Fine, and cellist Charles Akert, all regular members of the Trinity Alps Chamber Players. The musicians will share stories of the history and context of Beethoven and these works, offering the audience a kind of listening guide to help follow these strange and wonderful masterpieces.


Petaluma Historical Library & Museum (View)
20 4th Street
Petaluma, CA 94952
United States


Arts > Performance
Music > Classical

Kid Friendly: Yes!
Dog Friendly: No
Non-Smoking: Yes!
Wheelchair Accessible: Yes!


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