Like Beethoven’s Fifth, the Ninth is more than a famous symphony, it’s become a cultural icon. It’s a celebration of freedom, of joy, of civilisation and unity. Somehow through Beethoven’s music we’re reminded of what we have in common, rather than what divides us as individuals and peoples. Which is what makes the Ninth with its ‘Ode to Joy’ choral finale so timeless.
In this program Ashkenazy pairs the Ninth with Beethoven’s Second Symphony, music by a young man who was standing on the shoulders of Haydn and Mozart and finding fresh power and verve in his Classical inheritance.