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Ode to Joy

Friday Night Unlimited -
Ode an die Freude, handschrift en portret van Friedrich Schiller
Ode an die Freude, handschrift en portret van Friedrich Schiller

Schiller's idealistic poem about Europe and humanity, adapted to the here and now! Writers Unlimited asked seven writers and poets each to write their own Ode to Joy. Tonight they present the results.

You can look forward to odes by Nino Haratischwili, Magda Cârneci, Sanam Sheriff, Efe Murad, Grazyna Plebanek, Gustaaf Peek. Ghayath Almadhoun and Charlotte Van den Broeck. They will recite their work in their mother tongues, with simultaneous projections of Dutch and/or English translations. Classical accordionist Oleg Lysenko, Cellist Elisabeth Sturtewagen and soprano Jole De Baerdemaeker provide musical accompaniment.

Originally written in 1785, Schiller's Ode to Joy lives on because Ludwig van Beethoven added one of its stanzas to the finale (for choir and soloists) of his Ninth Symphony. In 1985, the European Union Chose this particular segment - albeit in wordless form - as the official hymn of the EU. In the poem, Schiller transmits the ideal of a world in which all people live in brotherhood.