Beethoven 2020 journey – chapter 5

“Thus Fate Knocks at the Door”

11 – 13 June 2020, York Hall

Beethoven’s 5th Symphony features one of the most recognisable introductions to any piece of music ever, yet the infamous premiere probably didn’t do it justice…

Coronavirus statement



Darkness to Light

A freezing December concert in which Beethoven premiered two symphonies, a piano concerto, and a choral work alongside a host of other pieces (all under-rehearsed) must have felt like a bleak endurance test for concert-goers. Little did the audience know that they had just witnessed one of Beethoven’s most immortal creations – a symphony that saw the composer look deep within his own personal struggles and emerge in a fiery blaze of victory.

Possibly inspired by a bleak incident years earlier (in which a singer, an argument and a knock at the door signalled the beginning of his declining hearing with brutal clarity), Beethoven’s 5th Symphony is the ultimate demonstration of a man battling personal misfortune through art. Join us at York Hall where we delve into the stories behind this monumental work, alongside a striking work by Shostakovich inspired by another fateful door-knock…

relaxed & informal

6.30pm: To begin…

As you enter York Hall, our design for the evening will be revealed! We believe the best way to relax into this magical world is over delicious food and drink* accompanied by atmospheric music (performers to be revealed soon).

Whereas Beethoven’s turmoil was internal, Shostakovich lived in a world of near-constant threat from the state. The Soviet Union was often a harsh place to live, with food limited to what was available nearby. Ingenuity played an essential role in the kitchen, as simple dishes with humble ingredients were elevated to be the best the produce would allow, and this is something that 3 Gents Event Catering** are focussing on with our menu for Chapter 5.

One thing that was rarely threatened by the Soviets was their supply of vodka (at one point in the 70s, nearly a third of government revenue was alcohol sales!). Mix & Match will be providing us with an authentic Russian drinking experience, complete with some seriously cool cocktail offerings.

*Please note the doors to the venue close at 7.45pm and will reopen once the main concert has finished. If you are planning to eat and drink prior to the concert we recommend arriving by 7pm. The bar and food station will stop serving at 7.45pm.

**Veggie, vegan and gluten-free options available

take your seats

8pm: Concert

After you’ve had a chance to relax into the evening over a bite to eat and a drink, it’s time for the main concert, with comfy sofas, chairs or cushions to choose from and drink in hand.

Alongside Beethoven’s fiery 5th symphony and it’s themes of triumph over fate, we will be exploring Shostakovitch’s haunting Chamber Symphony, which was inspired in part by the ominous doorknock of the KGB during the Soviet era in Russia. New to classical music? Don’t worry! Our conductor Nicholas will guide you through the stories surrounding the music as well as give you a few things to listen out for…

mix & mingle

10pm: Soirée

The live music continues until close to midnight in a more relaxed fashion as part of our soirée – a time for mingling with musicians, drinking cocktails and experiencing pieces in the relaxed atmosphere they were often performed in during Beethoven’s lifetime.

Performers to be revealed soon!

Absolutely wonderful! Thank you for a spectacular performance.

Thank you for bringing the stories to life this evening. It was lovely!

Maddie + Seb
An absolutely gorgeous evening! Fun, informative + glorious music...and flapjack ;)

Hannah & Richard
Thank you for a wonderful evening of music, an amazing ambience!

Lauren & Carl
This is clever, absorbing, fun and relaxing. All good. Well done. We will be back.

Great to see the musicians up close and hear the explanations from the conductor!

Mike and Roxy
Yet again you guys nailed it. You demystify classical music for the common man. That is an art in itself.


Dress rehearsal tickets

Want to keep the focus purely on the concert? Not a problem! For this event, we are offering you the chance to come along a day early and sit in on our dress rehearsal performance for a reduced price. This performance features the same concert programme as our full events – including the stories surrounding the music – and offers the same level of intimacy, but without the pre and post-show experience featuring pop up food, a themed cocktail bar and live music.

If you’re yet to try out a TLO event and are happy to join us on a school night, this is a great way to explore some incredible music. What’s more, priced at just £5 it is probably the best value orchestral concert in town!

Ticket sales are temporarily suspended due to coronavirus. Full statement here:

Coronavirus statement