Radio Station Runs Newspaper Obituaries for Beethoven in Bid to Keep Classical Music Alive

Composer dies all over again in TBWA ads

Beethoven died 187 years ago next month. So, why were apparently new obituaries for the composer only recently published?

TBWA\Guate counted on that clever bit of shock value as part of its bid to save Guatemala's only classical music radio station, Radio Faro Cultural, which is at risk of being closed—presumably because nobody under 50 listens to classical music anymore, no matter what country they're in, because they're all too busy listening to Pharrell or Katy Perry.

According to the agency's case study below, the campaign caught the attention of Guatemala's ministry of culture, which swooped in to bail out the station, because government preservation is probably the only thing that can save a waning genre's presence in a waning medium.

While equating the brand with Beethoven could come across as pretentious, the metaphor reads as surprisingly unstrained. But it's hard to imagine the choice going over well with some of the more staunch proponents of Bach and Mozart.

Credits below.


Client: Radio Faro Cultural

Agency: TBWA\Guate, Guatemala

Chief Executive Officer: Raúl Herrera

General Creative Director: Martín Sica

Creative Directors: Luis Guzmán, Francisco Pérez

Art Directors: Levin Méndez, Javier Contreras

Producer: Mateo Gómez

Planning Director: Flora Hasbun

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@GabrielBeltrone Gabriel Beltrone is a frequent contributor to Adweek.
Publish date: April 29, 2014 © 2020 Adweek, LLC. - All Rights Reserved and NOT FOR REPRINT