Beethoven's Symphony No. 9 To Come Alive In Doha


(MENAFN- The Peninsula) Joelyn Baluyut | The Peninsula

Doha, Qatar: The stage at the Qatar National Convention Centre will resonate with the timeless melodies of Beethoven's Symphony No. 9, on Wednesday, as the Qatar Philharmonic Orchestra (QPO) and Qatar Concert Choir come together to deliver a beguiling performance. This musical performance will transcend boundaries and celebrate the universal themes of friendship, humanity, and joy.

Kurt Meister, the Executive Director of QPO, expressed the significance of this momentous occasion, highlighting Beethoven's innovative use of a choir in a symphony for the first time in history. Meister remarked on the enduring relevance of Beethoven's masterpiece, stressing its message of friendship and partnership, which resonates deeply with the ethos of the concert.

Originally planned as part of the 50th-anniversary celebrations between Qatar and South Korea, the performance of Symphony No. 9 holds special significance. While the event was postponed until March, the spirit of camaraderie and cultural exchange remains intact. Meister underscored the global recognition of Beethoven's Ninth Symphony, noting its distinction as the European Union's anthem and its inclusion in a DVD sent to space, symbolising its status as a timeless creation of humanity.

“This music is important for all the people around the world,” Meister noted.

Elias Grandy, the conductor of the concert, expressed his excitement about leading such a monumental performance. Grandy described the symphony as a celebration of life and friendship, highlighting the collaborative efforts of the Qatar Philharmonic Orchestra, the Qatar Concert Choir, and the soloists. With the inclusion of the stirring“Ode to Joy,” the choral climax of the symphony, Grandy anticipates a jubilant atmosphere filled with energy and emotion.

“It's going to be a big celebration of humanity, friendship or just everything – joy about life, it's one of the universal pieces that exists and so I think it's wonderful we have the QPO, we have a big choir and for soloists, and so there's going to be a lot of people on stage creating a lot of energy with one of the greatest pieces ever.”

Giovanni Pasini, the Chorus Master, reflected on the choir's journey in preparation for the concert. Overcoming logistical challenges and language barriers, the Qatar Concert Choir, along with other local choirs, united to form a historic ensemble of 108 members – the biggest community choir ever created in Qatar.

Pasini recounted the rigorous rehearsal schedule and the collective effort to master Beethoven's monumental composition, praising the enthusiasm and dedication of all involved. He also revealed to The Peninsula that they started preparing for the concert in October last year.

Beatrice van der Haert, President of the Qatar Concert Choir, echoed Pasini's sentiments, stressing the excitement and challenges of incorporating a diverse array of singers into the ensemble. Through intensive workshops and rehearsals, the choir members embraced the opportunity to grow musically and forge connections with fellow performers.“It worked extremely well, enthusiasm people come out of each rehearsal, so happy, proud and enthusiastic, and they are making huge progress.”

“On the second week of February, we organised a 6-hour workshop for the choir with Choirmaster Jurgis Cabulis who is one of the leading choirmasters in the world. Cabulis made us work the piece upside down but honestly, it's coming together, it's exciting.”

As anticipation builds for this landmark event, Grandy reflects on the underlying message of Beethoven's Ninth Symphony – the power of unity and collective joy. Beyond the notes and melodies, the concert represents a convergence of cultures, voices, and aspirations, encapsulating the spirit of inclusivity and harmony.“This is also what the piece talks about – bringing people together.”

For those eager to experience this unforgettable performance, tickets are available via QPO's website, prices start at QR150.

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