Death March – Getting To Know You

Why the fascination with the final moments of great composers? Do these accounts illuminate the music in some way? Not really. “The root, I suspect, is social rather than art-critical. It has something to do with the function that classical music fulfils for many listeners in a secular age, its surrogacy for a forsaken Christian faith. The mortal agonies of a great composer have come to represent the sufferings of a saviour figure, a ritual of veneration. We observe in awe, anticipating redemption.”