Leonard Bernstein and assistant Craig Urquhart at the Berlin Wall

Leonard Bernstein’s concert in celebration of the fall of the Berlin Wall has become almost as legendary as the revolutionary moment it celebrated. Recorded at Berlin’s beautiful Schauspielhaus on Christmas Day 1989, Bernstein made history with this performance of Beethoven’s Ninth Symphony, conducting musicians from East and West Germany as well as from the four countries that occupied Berlin after World War II. Witness Bernstein and his multinational ensemble transform the famous “Ode to Joy” into a stirring “Ode to Freedom.”

“The experience of watching and listening to this performance will go some way to enable us all, German or non-German, to relive those truly momentous days.”
– MusicWeb International


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Ode to Freedom: Bernstein Conducts Beethoven's Ninth

Sunday, February 7, 2021 at 3:00 pm Walter Reade Theater

Given the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic, we have made the difficult decision to cancel the remainder of the events in the 2020/21 Great Performers series. As a result, this performance has been cancelled and will not be rescheduled. 


For ticket holders, please contact CenterCharge at 212.721.6500 to facilitate refunds or donations for affected performances. Should you have additional questions, you can also speak with a guest services representative at this phone number.

Directed by Humphrey Burton (1989)

Bavarian Radio Symphony Orchestra and Chorus With members of Staatskapelle Dresden, Orchestra of the Leningrad Kirov Theatre, London Symphony Orchestra, New York Philharmonic, Orchestre de Paris

Leonard Bernstein, conductor

Running time: 85 minutes