Anyone who thinks that musical scores lay down exact instructions for the performance needs to reconsider.
David Morriss plays us some of the most well-known orchestral works in the repertoire, those by Beethoven, and compares interpretations by an array of conductors.
He features some of the earliest existing recordings and you can hear the striking changes made to the music by different conducting styles.
You might find yourself asking, “How would Beethoven have done it?” Well, Beethoven did sometimes conduct his own works, but his hearing loss meant he struggled to get his point across.
BEETHOVEN: Symphony No 3, Eroica - Henry Wood (cond)
BEETHOVEN: March from The Ruins of Athens - Orchestre des Concert Colonne/ Édouard Colonne (rec. 1906 or 1907) (Col 001)
BEETHOVEN: Symphony No 5 - Odeon Orch/ Friedrich Kark (rec. 1910)
BEETHOVEN: Symphony No 5 - BPO/ Arthur Nikisch (rec. 1913) (Symposium 1087-1088)
BEETHOVEN: Piano Concerto No 4 - Conrad Hansen (pno), Berlin Philharmonic/ Wilhelm Furtwängler (rec. 1943) (Tahra FURT 1034-5)
BEETHOVEN: Symphony No 1 - Royal Philharmonic Orch/ George Henschel (rec. 1927) (Cheyne Records CHE 44379)
BEETHOVEN: Symphony No 1 - Concertgebouw Orch/ Willem Mengelberg (rec. 1940)
BEETHOVEN: Symphony No 7 - NBC SO/ Arturo Toscanini (rec. 1951) (RCA GD 60253)
BEETHOVEN: Symphony No 7 - NWDR SO/ Carl Schuricht (rec. 1957) (Tahra 664)
BEETHOVEN: Symphony No 8 - Vienna Philharmonic/ Felix Weingartner (rec. 1936) (History 204552-308)
BEETHOVEN: Symphony No 9 - BPO/ Wilhelm Furtwängler (rec. 1942) (Tahra FURT 1036/37)