Michael Newnham, conductor
Lesley Bouza, soprano
Andrea Ludwig, mezzo soprano
Andrew Walker, tenor
Bradley Christensen, baritone
The Toronto Mendelssohn Choir
Composed between 1822 and 1824, Symphony No. 9 is the final complete symphony by Ludwig van Bethoven. “It is regarded by many critics and musicologists as one of Beethoven's greatest works and one of the supreme achievements in the history of western music.” (Cook, 1993)
The symphony was the first example of a major composer using voices in a symphony - the words are sung during the final (4th) movement of the symphony by four vocal soloists and a chorus. They were taken from the "Ode to Joy", a poem written by Friedrich Schiller in 1785 and revised in 1803, with text additions made by the Beethoven. The piece is a resounding cry of humanity, celebrating universal brotherhood and sisterhood.
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