Friday, 1 November 2013

The 1803

Beethoven’s Great Eastern Symphony
Wreck of the 1803 ($10 Aquarium Version)
Constructed at Tranmere from 47,000 tons of wrought iron, 11 million brass rivets, 70 miles of piano wire and A-flat tyre, this sea symphony held the longest spot in the charts from November 1803 until June the following year, when it was sunk by Admiral Horatio Balmpott in mistake for a French East Indiaman.

A snidey short cut from late classical into the mid-Atlantic, “The 1803” (as it’s derisively called by muzakologists) received its first performance at the battle of Rushworth & Drapers, 1807, when a squadron of Pomeranian Hornblowers were chased into a Masurian pond by Polish flautists of the Grande Armée Concert Party. Its tragic opening theme is repeated ad nausoleum on oboe and flageolet, tin tray & castanet. Then a counter melody of shaken coins and raspberry glissandoes intrudes; after a short fudge, the mood lightens into a pathetic bazurka. Movements two, three and four follow in much the same fashion, with various changes of tempo, flavour and venue.
Dave's "Napoleon With Trout" (fishscale on canvas)
Public performances of the symphony were banned by Napoleon Bonaparte, who never forgave Ludwig for letting him down on the sandy lake shores of Pomerania, but who nevertheless called for the tune to be hummed at his deathbed. Ludwig Van received only 17 Austrian Krones for the work and later repudiated it as the product of a marinated biologist. CD available on His Monster’s Voice, LVB/Op/28.3.

In other news, the mummified penis of Beethoven’s cat, Donald, has been auctioned by Sodaboff’s, where it fetched three bob and an orange. Meanwhile, in San Diego, Beethoven’s orchestral version of the Trout Mask Replica has been unveiled as a fake. And back on The Wirral, Ludwig Van himself is to open the New Palace Motors Used Cars You Can Trust on Bromborough High Road. As a man in the street said, “I’ve had three cars. Each car has been a good car. What more can you ask?”
Wirral Washout
In weather. Port Sunlight, tomorrow, the outdoor performance of Beethoven’s 6.2 Symphony “The Postural” is to be washed down with a little light Schubert and several strong breezers.