It’s a celebration not to be missed when Music Director, Steven Smith leads a performance featuring the Richmond Symphony, the Richmond Symphony Chorus, VCU Commonwealth Chorus and soloists. Celebrate the timeless themes of humanity, brotherhood, and joy in this special opening concert.
The Symphony No. 9 in D minor, Op. 125 (also known as "the Choral"), is Ludwig van Beethoven's final complete symphony. Completed in 1824, the symphony is one of the best-known works in classical music. Among critics, it is almost universally considered one of Beethoven's greatest works, and many consider it one of the greatest compositions in the western musical canon. The symphony was the first example of a major composer using voices in a symphony (thus making it a choral symphony). The words are sung during the final movement 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 additions made by the composer. Today, it stands as one of the most performed symphonies in the world.
In 2001, Beethoven's autograph score of the Ninth Symphony, held by the Berlin State Library, was added to the United Nations Memory of the World Programme Heritage list, becoming the first musical score so honored.