How Beethoven’s symphonies changed the world

Phillip Clark writes: Ludwig van Beethoven, the composer who, more than any other, changed music, the sound of music and what it is that composers do, wrote nine symphonies that jolted music out of itself. Life could never – would never – be the same again. The “classical” rationality of structure, harmony, form, melodic development and orchestration span into open-ended possibility. And, nearly 200 years after his death, no one expects the pieces to settle down again any time soon.

This much we know; but how exactly did Beethoven’s symphonies shift the terrain so absolutely? Riccardo Chailly’s convivial, knowing smile as we sit down to talk in the music room of his Milan home tells me that this is a man with answers. There’s plenty to smile about: at 58, he’s about to .............

http://www.gramophone.co.uk/feature/how-beethoven%E2%80%99s-symphonies-changed-the-world