Music: Symphony for Socialism

For anybody except Communists to play Beethoven, says the East German magazine Forum, is "a serious provocation ... To listen to Beethoven over RIAS [American Radio in Berlin] is to approve a rape which freezes the blood.'' Forum even claims that the jubilant Seventh Symphony, which Beethoven wrote in 1812, expressed "the hope that a unified German democratic republic would result from war."

Although the cultural commissars have just been converted to Beethoven, East German music lovers have steadfastly applauded him, but for different reasons: at a recent East Berlin Staatsoper performance of Beethoven's opera Fidelia, fans burst into applause after the...

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