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Beethoven et la Grande-Bretagne du vivant du compositeur : une fascination réciproque aux multiples facettes

Abstract : The aim of this thesis is to focus on the relationship between the German composer and Great Britain. However, at first glance, this idea may be surprising. Indeed, Beethoven, born in 1770 in Germany never went to Britain unlike other composers such as Haydn, Weber and Mendelssohn. Nevertheless, this study will attempt to show that a true relationship was established, based on numerous aspects and on a reciprocal feeling of admiration. Firstly, this thesis will try to find the origins of the German composer’s enthusiasm for Britain and it will then define the different cultural aspects that were so dear to Beethoven. Thus, literature, music and politics emerge as the different aspects of British culture which the musician admired the most. As a result, it is possible to find tokens of his fascination for Britain through his works. In the same way, this research work will describe the mechanisms which contributed to make Beethoven a celebrated composer in the United Kingdom who, gradually, became the new British musical hero. Thus, this thesis will analyse the concert programmes and reception of Beethoven’s works and it will shed new light on the importance of networks which promoted the composer within the British musical scene. Indeed, Beethoven benefited from the valuable help of two networks: the first was composed of Viennese or foreign friends living in London like Clementi, Salomon, von Häring or Ries, who put him in contact with a second network, a British one with English musicians like Sir George Smart, Charles Neate or publishers like Robert Birchall. Finally, these two lobbies merged together into one of the key elements promoting Beethoven’s music, The Philharmonic Society, created in 1813. This study will also show the importance of the social, musical and esthetical factors which favoured Beethoven’s domination of the British musical scene. It will show how the British press elevated Beethoven to the rank of “British” citizen especially during his agony. Finally, in Beethoven studies, there is a major gap to fill in: the reasons why Beethoven abandoned the different projects of visiting England.
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Submitted on : Thursday, December 19, 2019 - 10:00:25 AM
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Nicolas Molle. Beethoven et la Grande-Bretagne du vivant du compositeur : une fascination réciproque aux multiples facettes. Musique, musicologie et arts de la scène. Université de Lorraine, 2016. Français. ⟨NNT : 2016LORR0221⟩. ⟨tel-01752390⟩



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