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In Rehearsal: Beethoven’s Ninth (Sample Post)

Ludwig’s Ode to Joy


Let’s go back to the first measure. 1-2-3-4. Clarinets, forte, please. Beethoven’s ingenious freshness won’t manifest. He was already deaf when he wrote it. Short! Short! Violas are off.

Who stole my baton? Just the trumpets, now, please at measure 89. Not pianissimo! It’s a D-minor. Rhapsody in Blue by George Gershwin. Wonderful, wonderful, yes. I really love it. When I play it, I think it’s the most beautiful music ever played.


The timpani is too loud. Okay, now that you’ve all suffered through that… Oh, you should hear t. Let’s go from 50, please. 1-2-3-4! All right. Now what? It’s heaven. Now with the tuba… 3-4!

You can do more, give it all you’ve got! Three, and…! You talk big, but you don’t last, you know what I mean? Let me hear violins at 51. Sit up, be a captain. Take a breath, lead your troops. It’s fabulous! That’s the way that dog was. 22, please. No, once more. You have to have your interpretation before you start to rehearse. That’s not balanced. All the celli!