As for the name, the inspiration for the shoes apparently came from the composer’s Symphony No. 9 in particular:
“The Kobe 9 Elite LowBeethoven pays tribute to the German composer and pianist, and more specifically the power of his Ninth Symphony from the early 1800s. The grey color of this colorway represents Beethoven’s timeless quality.”
It’s not the first time, though, that Bryant has declared his love for Beethoven. Himself a keen learning pianist,
I have been thinking for years about creating an environment of participatory mark making and Beethoven’s sonatas. I feel like this is a found treasure! Even more so after reading about Schiff’s political views towards his country of birth, Hungary. I have been listening to so much Beethoven over the past few months with all the horrible events happening in our world. The eternal optimism of Beethoven has at its core resistance and revolution! Or maybe it is the other way around?
He has been outspoken in his criticism of the right-of-centre government of Viktor Orban, and its relationship with the third largest political party, the expressly xenophobic and anti-Semitic Jobbik “Movement For a Better Hungary”. Now, though, Andras Schiff goes further.
"It’s not just the government that disturbs me," he says, with a small, apologetic laugh, that interrupts many of the sentences uttered by this profoundly serious musician. "It’s the people that disturb me. Not all of them. There’s very little civilian courage. People are scared to speak up."
From 2009, All Things Considered:
"With Beethoven, it seems important to me to show the encyclopedic logic of his development, and that’s only possible in a chronological reflection of the creative process," Schiff says. "As far as the first three sonatas are concerned, what’s immediately striking from an objective point of view is their unprecedented brilliance. In them, we hear the virtuoso presenting himself to the public."
"András Schiff last performed the complete Beethoven piano sonatas at Wigmore Hall from 2004–6 to overwhelming critical acclaim, with the Guardian’s editor Alan Rusbridger describing one particular performance as ‘a riveting mixture of erudition, analysis, passion, wit and memory’.
On the day before each of the eight recitals in the series, the world-renowned pianist, pedagogue and lecturer gave a lecture-recital in which he explored the works to be performed. Deeply engaging and insightful, these thought-provoking lecture-recitals, recorded live at the Hall, are now available below to hear as eight lecture-recitals.”