Reflection by Angela Cheng

Angela Cheng © Photo: Ann Barnes

"The Emperor was written at the height of Beethoven’s middle period, and its innovations are groundbreaking and revolutionary. Instead of opening with an orchestral exposition, he begins with a cadenza where the piano immediately announces an equal partnership between soloist and orchestra. What I find most compelling is the slow movement. The simplicity and purity create a spellbinding quality, transcending the performer and listener into a blissful plane. Also truly magical is the ingenious manner in which he connects the second and third movements. The inventive, ingenious and innovative qualities work together to make the Emperor a masterpiece and a joy to share with you!"
-Angela Cheng

The Piano Concerto No. 5 was Beethoven’s last piano concerto. It was written between 1809 and 1811 in Vienna. The name “Emperor” was not Beethoven's own, but was coined by the English publisher of the concerto.

Exceptional Canadian pianist Angela Cheng performs this work Thursday, September 27th as part of the NAC Orchestra’s Beethoven Festival.