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Aileen
12-09-2000, 09:56 AM
thanks to all who replied with info. on Beethoven's 9th Symphony Finale

[This message has been edited by Aileen (edited 12-20-2000).]

Peter
12-09-2000, 11:18 AM
No need to look further ! - check out the symphony pages on this site - if you need more info, just post your questions here!

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'Man know thyself'

Luis
12-09-2000, 02:36 PM
Try here: http://www.geocities.com/Vienna/Strasse/3732/Research.html

Luis
12-14-2000, 09:44 PM
On the website I mentioned on another thread (http://www.geocities.com/Vienna/4098/) there is an essay on B's 9th. Here is a paragraph I found interesting:

It must be mentioned at this point that the word "Joy" ("Freude") as used in the Schiller poem is quite possibly a euphemism for "Freedom" ("Freiheit"), and that Beethoven was aware of this when he penned the choral finale. Such euphemisms were, of course, necessary with the backdrop of fairly unenlightened despotism as practiced by Prince Metternich in Vienna at the time. Metternich even had secret police trail Beethoven for a time - the composer was in the habit of publicly railing against the regime at taverns - before he was declared eccentric and harmless. It seems that given Beetho-ven's notoriously fervent political feelings, and the vagueness of the word "Joy," and also the similar-ity in the German words "Freiheit" and "Freude," this meaning must be implied. A good argument has been presented, however, that since the text goes on to extoll the joyous virtues of finding a loyal wife and keeping close friends, that Joy must be literally intended. This argument may be strongly countered by several details. First, one may simply look to the theme of Beethoven's own opera Fide-lio in which the very explicit idea of political freedom is sensitively intermeshed with the story of a virtuous and loyal wife. It seems sensible that these two major works of the composer might reflect each other's themes. Second, for Beethoven on a personal level, the implications of finding a loving wife and loyal friends were directly connected to (and occasionally foiled by) his own overwhelming sense of independence. In addition, in its focus upon a "loving father" (God) the Ode to Joy is inexo-rably tied to Beethoven's lifelong search for a male leader-figure, as evidenced by his many friend-ships with politically powerful men, and initial admiration of Napoleon. Lastly, the ultimate focus of the text (especially as implemented by Beethoven) is clearly directed at the idea of universal brother-hood, and thus the equality of all people- an unmistakably political position in Metternichian Vienna. We must view the Ninth Symphony as a far more meaningful personal comment than simply the fluffy and uninspired concept of "Joy."

Peter
12-15-2000, 04:54 AM
Originally posted by Luis:

It must be mentioned at this point that the word "Joy" ("Freude") as used in the Schiller poem is quite possibly a euphemism for "Freedom" ("Freiheit"), and that Beethoven was aware of this when he penned the choral finale. Such euphemisms were, of course, necessary with the backdrop of fairly unenlightened despotism as practiced by Prince Metternich in Vienna at the time.

I believe that the original intention of Schiller was 'Ode to Freedom' which had to be changed to 'Joy' beacause the word freedom was considered far too subversive in revolutionary times.The Symphony was of course actally performed as Ode to Freedom by Bernstein in 1989 to celebrate the fall of the Berlin wall.



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'Man know thyself'

[This message has been edited by Peter (edited 12-14-2000).]

Rod
12-15-2000, 07:19 AM
Originally posted by Peter:
I believe that the original intention of Schiller was 'Ode to Freedom' which had to be changed to 'Joy' beacause the word freedom was considered far too subversive in revolutionary times.The Symphony was of course actally performed as Ode to Freedom by Bernstein in 1989 to celebrate the fall of the Berlin wall.




As Luis has said, I think, based on the content of the Ode as a whole, that Joy is more accurate than freedom. The subject matter covers far more that just this political ideal. If Schiller actually meant 'freedom' but in a wider context, then the English counterpart (ie the word freedom) is perhaps not wholely appropriate, as we generally give it a narrower definition than this. The excesses of Bernstein! No different from Elton John's shamefull (in that he was allowed to play it) re-writing 'Candle in the Wind' for Princes Di's funeral. I would have preferred if he had played the original word based on my above remarks, and it works better musically. I'm sure the citizens of Berlin were feeling pretty joyfull on that occasion.

Rod

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"If I were but of noble birth..." - Rod Corkin