Marin Alsop describes Beethoven's 9th Symphony

The celebrated American conductor Marin Alsop talks us through Beethoven’s 9th Symphony, the composer’s much loved work which culminates in ‘Ode to Joy’.

Alsop describes the ‘suspense, [the] possibility, the unknown’ with which the piece commences its journey. A journey which moves on to make reference to, and draw upon, death, humour, prayer, nature and more, before its climax in ‘the most powerful, uniting emotion we have’, joy.

Marin Alsop describes Beethoven's 9th Symphony


The second movement is Beethoven at his humourous best. No matter how despondent or depressed Beethoven got, humour always drew him out.
Marin Alsop

Marin Alsop had planned to bring this symphony to a new audience through Beethoven 9, a special concert reimagining this most famous of Beethoven’s symphonies at our Royal Festival Hall in April 2020. Unfortunately this event had to be postponed, due to the global coronavirus crisis.

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