20:00 Konzerthaus Berlin
16:00 Konzerthaus Berlin


Ludwig van Beethoven, Symphony No. 9

Ralf Hoyer

“Prolog” für Mezzosopran und Orchester auf einen Text von Kerstin Hensel (Uraufführung)

Ludwig van Beethoven

Symphony No. 9 in D minor, op. 125 with final choral of Schiller’s “Ode to Joy”

Vladimir Jurowski


Natalia Ponomarchuk


Johanna Wallroth


Karolina Gumos

Mezzo / Alto

Jeremy Ovenden


Markus Marquardt


Rundfunkchor Berlin

Benjamin Goodson

Chorus Master

Rundfunk-Sinfonieorchester Berlin

Hope and Utopia

Would Beethoven ever have composed the Ninth if he had known how much it would be appropriated and abusively glorified by the left and the right on the one hand, and how much it would seemingly be reduced to absurdity again and again by warmongering and attacks on human freedom on the other? Yes, he would have composed it because he believed in the positive in people.
Ralf Hoyer, who was commissioned by the RSB to compose a work on a text by Kerstin Hensel, which Vladimir Jurowski had already planned to preface the symphony in 2020/2021, but which could not take place due to the pandemic, is also clear about this. “I am concerned with a meaningful addition that does not seem superfluous but, as a symphonic prologue for mezzo-soprano and orchestra, marks a contemporary starting point that already opens up a different listening perspective on the beginning of the symphony.”

Natalia Ponomarchuk, a conductor from Ukraine, will take over the baton from Vladimir Jurowski in the RSB’s New Year’s Eve concert to conduct two movements of Beethoven’s Symphony No. 9. “This is our homage to the culture of a country in the greatest existential danger.” (Vladimir Jurowski)

In 2022, millions of Ukrainians will have to spend the New Year without electricity, heating, water and with limited medical care. As part of the RSB concert, we would like to draw your attention to the work of Ukraine-Hilfe Berlin e.V.. The orchestra and its principal conductor have already helped the volunteer association to provide people in Ukraine with urgently needed relief supplies. With a direct donation to the Ukraine-Hilfe Berlin e.V. association, you too can give hope and strength to those affected by the war.

If you would like to support the work of the association, you can make your donation via the website Ukraine-Hilfe-Berlin.de.


Live broadcast on 30.12.2022 in the Zeiss-Großplanetarium with starry sky projection.

Radio broadcast DLF Kultur 6 on 31.12.2022, 3:05 p.m.

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