The coronavirus pandemic situation is getting gloomy world over as more and more people are getting infected. However, there are people who try to cheer up others, particularly those who are closer to them in relation and in proximity.
In these disturbing times when the world is observing social distancing and facing a grim health crisis, musicians are coming forward to cheer up people in unique ways. With many feelings to express, there might not be a better medium than music to align emotions and sensitivities right now.
“Music expresses that which cannot be put into words and that which cannot remain silent,” said Victor Hugo, who was a French poet, novelist, and dramatist of Romantic Movement, rightly echo the condition of people today.
The musicians of Qatar Philharmonic Orchestra have started playing from their homes first to keep rehearsing and then to entertaining their neighbours. The QP seems to follow the words of Germany Kent, who says: “Reach out and help others. If you have the power to make someone happy, do it. Be a vessel, be the change, be the difference, or be the inspiration. Shine your light as an example. The world needs more of that.” Kent is an American print and broadcast journalist. He is also regarded as a social media etiquette expert.
As many 96 musicians of QPO are all set to perform same time at 8pm today to cheer up and entertain their neighbours. Scattered all over Doha, the musicians will play Ode to Joy by Beethoven Symphony No. 9, using different instruments from the balconies of their houses.
The symphony is the final complete symphony by Ludwig van Beethoven, composed between 1822 and 1824. It was first performed in Vienna on 7 May 1824. The symphony is regarded by many critics and musicologists as Beethoven’s greatest work and one of the supreme achievements in the history of western music. One of the best-known works in common practice music, it stands as one of the most performed symphonies in the world.
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 (4th) movement of the symphony 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 text additions made by Beethoven.
In 2001, Beethoven’s original, hand-written manuscript of the score, 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 designated. “The times are challenging. We all are staying at homes in quarantine to face an unprecedented war against Covid-19. This is the time to protect our families and all around the globe, said Lorena Manescu, a Romanian violinist working with QPO for last 12 years.
“I am a professional musician. I play in the first violin section of the orchestra. Music knows no boundaries. Even under current circumstances it has the power to inspire and help people of all ethnicities, ages and social backgrounds,” she added.
Lorena has been missing playing at live concerts that she has been enjoying the most. “I miss our audience, my colleagues and performing together very much. We have been working online lately. I feel very excited about the idea of performing “together” with my colleagues today. Even as circumstances keep us apart, our love for music unites us and will hopefully enable us to reach out to the world and invite everybody to be mindful and caring. I am anxious to get back to normalcy but the challenging times also have their opportunity as we can entertain our neighbours and other people who might not have been able to attend a live concert.”
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