classical music review
The Chicago Symphony Orchestra under the direction of Riccardo Muti plays Ludwig van Beethoven’s most memorable work: The choral symphony, Beethoven’s symphony no. 9 in its entirety. Below is the link.
The Symphony No. 9 in D Minor, Op. 125 has four movements:
1. Allegro ma non troppo, un poco maestoso
2. Molto vivace
3. Adagio molto e cantabile—Andante moderato
4. Finale: Ode to Joy
Below you will find the program notes as given by the official program.
Your task is to comment on each movement and more importantly about your listening experience. I am not interested in obscure facts about the work.
I want you to describe your experience in listening to it. It is certainly a monumental work and in these troubling times it is what our soul needs.
400 words minimum
You should describe your personal experience at the concert and take notes and report each piece/composition that you listened to during the concert.
There’s something astonishing about a deaf composer choosing to open a symphony with music that reveals, like no other music before it, the very essence of sound emerging from silence. It is a masterstroke, to be sure, but for Beethoven it
must also have been both painful and cathartic. The famous pianissimo opening—sixteen measures with no secure sense of key or rhythm—does not so much depict the journey from darkness to light, or from chaos to order, as the birth of sound itself or the creation of a musical idea. It is as if the challenges of Beethoven’s daily existence—the struggle to compose music, his difficulty in communicating, the frustration of remembering what it was like to hear—have been made real in a single page
This symphony shows Beethoven using all the subtlety and mastery of his craft to reach an even wider audience and to touch the common man as never before. He meant for it to be a break- through work—music’s first crossover composi- tion. It’s also likely that in the text he picked for the symphony’s finale—Schiller’s hymn to uni- versal brotherhood—Beethoven found the sense of community he craved as a comfort against personal loss, loneliness, and the terrifying sense of always feeling somehow apart, even though he was at the peak of his career. The struggle to communicate is the narrative that runs through- out this symphony, as Beethoven finally makes clear in his choral finale, when sound is literally given voice. The Ninth Symphony pushes the boundaries of art as Beethoven understood them. His own search for new compositional procedures—and there are many wildly original ideas in this symphony—underlies the whole work: the striving toward what Goethe called “the fulfillment of beautiful possibilities.”
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