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Home>Wind Instruments>Instrumental Solos>Alto Saxophone (Eb Editions)

Beethoven's Fifth Symphony for Alto Sax & Piano

Item # TS353
Beethoven's Fifth Symphony for Alto Sax & Piano
Beethoven's Fifth Symphony for Alto Sax & Piano
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Beethoven's Fifth Symphony is one of the most recognizable pieces of music ever written. With numerous appearances in popular culture including movies, television, rock & roll and disco, it stands alone as the most popular of Beethoven's nine symphonies. This special treat will enable musicians of all ages to experience the genius of Beethoven's most significant work as either a solo performance or any assorted instrumental combination as Jonathon Robbins arranged this masterpiece for Trumpet, Clarinet, Alto Sax, Trombone & Flute or Violin with piano accompaniment in accommodating keys. This famous Beethoven classic theme published by Santorella Publications is a great addition to our “ever-strong” instrumental solo library.

Beethoven's Fifth was first performed in Vienna in 1808, but was not initially recognized as an innovative piece of music. This was mostly due to poor conditions at this 1st performance that included a frigid-cold theater and a poorly prepared orchestra. Even though the debut left critics with mixed opinions, people soon realized it was unlike anything they had heard before.

In addition to the emotional impact of bold opening movement, the symphony is technically progressive. One innovative element is the repetition of the rhythm of the famous, four note opening throughout the symphony, unifying all three movements. Incorporating a piccolo, the double bassoon and the use of three trombones in the final movement showcased his genius.

Robert Schumann, a German composer and influential music critic, wrote; “this symphony invariably wields its power over men of every age like those great phenomena of nature. This symphony, too, will be heard in future centuries, nay, as long as music and the world exist.” Over 200 years after its premier, Beethoven's Fifth remains a performance staple of orchestras and will continue to influence the next generation of composers, musicians and popular culture.

Ludwig van Beethoven


Born in Bonn, Germany, on December 16, 1770; died in Vienna, Austria on March 26, 1827. Beethoven represents the apex of Classical tradition and the strongest link to Romantic music. He became a fine pianist at an early age and later developed into one of the greatest of all time. Beethoven tirelessly studied the Well-Tempered Clavier by J.S. Bach, it was his musical bible. Hearing him play in 1787, Mozart said, “This young man will leave his mark on the world.”

However, as a composer, Beethoven was the anti thesis of Mozart. Wolfgang's ideas flowed spontaneously, fully-developed from his pen, where Beethoven struggled with his creations. His famous “Sketch Books” reveal that he slowly and painfully developed his ideas and often the final piece showed no recognizable correlation to the original thought. Though his process was arduous, Beethoven was able to breathe new life into every form he touched. And though he wrote only one opera, “Fidelio”, he successfully tackled most other forms. His symphonies, sonatas, chamber music and concertos are a staple of most concert programs.

At the age of 30, Ludwig became progressively deaf and could no longer even hear his works. Amazingly, his music bears no evidence of the despair he must have felt; instead, his greatest works, the “Choral” Symphony, the “Missa Solemnis” and the later String Quartets, have been referred to as “sublime” although for him they were just silent notes on paper.
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