"Lass uns das Lied des Schiller": Musical and philosophical unities in Ludwig van Beethoven's Ninth Symphony (Germany)
Stiles, Robert Daniel
Master of Music
The Ninth Symphony of Ludwig van Beethoven is unified by both musical and philosophical monothematic ideals. The "Ode to Joy" melody of the Finale is found in every movement, providing melodic, harmonic, and structural cohesiveness. Philosophical unity is provided in the text to the "Ode" and its reflection on Beethoven's own inner struggles and his desire for the unity of humanity. These separate entities combine to create a work of oneness, both in musical content and meaning. A fresh look at the work provides an opportunity to examine the validity of older interpretations and compare them with new research and concepts. This comparison suggests new ideas about the work's meaning.