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The “Ode to Joy” by Beethoven was written by the German poet, Johann Christoph Friedrich von Schiller, in the summer of 1785.ode to joy i very well remember, is a very popular song that i loved in those high school days when we did Literature-in-English. In German, it is “Ode an die Freude,” a poem by Friedrich Schiller, and the poem might have been no more than just another Romantic poem, were it not for Beethoven’s musical setting of it. Now it is one of the most famous poems in world literature, because of him. this song was so popular that In 1972, the Council of Europe made Beethoven’s “Ode to Joy” its official anthem. Years later, in 1985, the European Union did the same. Although Schiller’s text isn’t sung in the anthem, the music conveys the same ideas of freedom, peace, and unity. see download link at end of article.

Brief history of the song
“Ode to Joy” was composed in 1824, in the final movement of his last, and arguably most famous symphony, Symphony No. 9. The premiere took place in Vienna on May 7, 1824, and despite its unpracticed and underrehearsed presentation, the audience was ecstatic. It was the first time Beethoven had appeared on stage in 12 years. At the end of the performance (though some sources say it could have been after the 2nd movement), it was said that Beethoven continued conducting even though the music had ended.
One of the soloists stopped him and turned him around to accept his applause. The audience was well aware of Beethoven’s health and hearing loss, so in addition to clapping, they threw their hats and scarves in the air so that he could see their overwhelming approval. Beethoven isn’t typically thought of today, among musicologists, as a composer with the ability to compose lyrical melodies along the lines of the next entrant. Beethoven was able to make a mountain out of a molehill. He composed themes or motifs, and was the primary precursor to Richard Wagner’s leitmotifs. But, now and then, Beethoven sang out a melody to rival anyone’s. The final movement of his 9th Symphony is one of the most famous moments in musical history, and everyone in the civilized world can hum its tune.
see lyrics below
In german
O Freunde, nicht diese Töne!
Sondern laßt uns angenehmere anstimmen,
und freudenvollere.

Freude!
Freude!
Freude, schöner Götterfunken
Tochter aus Elysium,
Wir betreten feuertrunken,
Himmlische, dein Heiligtum!
Deine Zauber binden wieder
Was die Mode streng geteilt;
Alle Menschen werden Brüder,
Wo dein sanfter Flügel weilt.
Wem der große Wurf gelungen,
Eines Freundes Freund zu sein;
Wer ein holdes Weib errungen,
Mische seinen Jubel ein!
Ja, wer auch nur eine Seele
Sein nennt auf dem Erdenrund!
Und wer’s nie gekonnt, der stehle
Weinend sich aus diesem Bund!
Freude trinken alle Wesen
An den Brüsten der Natur;
Alle Guten, alle Bösen
Folgen ihrer Rosenspur.
Küsse gab sie uns und Reben,
Einen Freund, geprüft im Tod;
Wollust ward dem Wurm gegeben,
Und der Cherub steht vor Gott.
Froh, wie seine Sonnen fliegen
Durch des Himmels prächt’gen Plan,
Laufet, Brüder, eure Bahn,
Freudig, wie ein Held zum Siegen.
Seid umschlungen, Millionen!
Diesen Kuß der ganzen Welt!
Brüder, über’m Sternenzelt
Muß ein lieber Vater wohnen.
Ihr stürzt nieder, Millionen?
Ahnest du den Schöpfer, Welt?
Such’ ihn über’m Sternenzelt!
Über Sternen muß er wohnen.
in English
O friends, no more of these sounds!
Let us sing more cheerful songs,
More songs full of joy!
Joy!
Joy!
Joy, bright spark of divinity,
Daughter of Elysium,
Fire-inspired we tread
Within thy sanctuary.

Thy magic power re-unites
All that custom has divided,
All men become brothers,
Under the sway of thy gentle wings.
Whoever has created
An abiding friendship,
Or has won
A true and loving wife,
All who can call at least one soul theirs,
Join our song of praise;
But those who cannot must creep tearfully
Away from our circle.
All creatures drink of joy
At natures breast.
Just and unjust
Alike taste of her gift;
She gave us kisses and the fruit of the vine,
A tried friend to the end.
Even the worm can feel contentment,
And the cherub stands before God!
Gladly, like the heavenly bodies
Which He sent on their courses
Through the splendor of the firmament;
Thus, brothers, you should run your race,
Like a hero going to victory!
You millions, I embrace you.
This kiss is for all the world!
Brothers, above the starry canopy
There must dwell a loving father.
click here to download

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