Beethoven’s Humor Explored as Tucson Symphony Continues 250th Birthday Celebration

by Tucson Symphony

Maestro José Luis Gomez to Conduct Symphonies Nos. 2 and 8 on MasterWorks Program

(Tucson, AZ)─Ludwig van Beethoven’s second and second-to-last symphonies will continue the Tucson Symphony Orchestra’s celebration of the 250th anniversary of the composer’s birth when Maestro José Luis Gomez conducts the MasterWorks program, Beethoven × 2. In addition to Beethoven’s Second and Eighth Symphonies, the program will open with the world premiere of a piece that Composer-in-residence Dan Coleman wrote as a gift for Maestro Gomez, Imagining the Dance. Performances are on Saturday, January 11, at 2:00 and 7:30 p.m. and Sunday, January 12, at 2:00 p.m. at Catalina Foothills High School Music Hall, 4300 E. Sunrise Drive in Tucson, where there is plenty of free parking. Concert Comments start one hour prior to performances and are complimentary with tickets.

“Apart from being very distant in time, the Second and Eighth Symphonies have a common ground in the lightness and brightness of the music,” explains Maestro Gomez. “They are inspired by the music of Haydn, who Beethoven loved and admired so much. I wanted to pair them to see how many similarities there are in the use of humor in the music. The 8th is first on the program because it was written during his most depressed time. It is incredible how during that time he would produce such lighthearted music, full of light and happiness. It means that for Beethoven, music was always his salvation.”

Symphony No. 2, one of his most energetic, cheerful, and outgoing works, shows Beethoven continuing to push the boundaries of his time, taking steps toward the “Eroica” Symphony, which so shattered the conventions of the age. As with the Eighth Symphony, the exuberant sound of this symphony belies the turmoil that Beethoven was experiencing in his life. At age 36, he was discovering that he was losing his hearing.

The MasterWorks Series is sponsored by Splendido at Rancho Vistoso and receives generous support from Drs. John P. and Helen S. Schaefer. Concert Comments are sponsored by Fishkind, Bakewell, Maltzman and Hunter.

Tickets are $55 to $85. They are available online at, at the Tucson Symphony Orchestra Box Office, 2175 N. Sixth Avenue, or by phone at 520.882.8585.  TSO Box Office hours are Tuesday through Saturday from 10:00 a.m. to 5 p.m. unless otherwise indicated.

 Contact: Terry Marshall, Public Relations Manager, 520.620.9158