How did the idea for this project develop?

The Australian String Quartet approached me to bring a theatrical element to this program of Beethoven Widmann Beethoven. The Quartet is interested in exploring new ideas in how live music experiences can be presented.

I commenced with research into Beethoven, his life and his compositions, and came across his Heiligenstadt Testament. This is an incredibly historical document: a profoundly personal letter that Beethoven wrote to his brothers, Karl and Johann, which expresses the intense turmoil the composer faced as his deafness became increasingly debilitating.

We all agreed the Heiligenstadt Testament was an interesting document to work from as it gives such a rich, personal insight to the composer.

Australian String Quartet, Beethoven The Australian String Quartet in rehearsal with director Andy Packer. Photo: supplied

What ideas are you hoping to highlight or explore in this project?

The goal always is to put the music and the composers at the centre of the performance, and to give the audience a shared entry point into the music. This is a live performance – the players sharing time and space with their audience. We want to unite the audience in this shared...