Brussels musicians will perform Good Friday Ode to Joy

Brussels musicians will perform Good Friday Ode to Joy


norman lebrecht

March 24, 2016

Message received:

The musicians, singers and staff of Brussels Philharmonic and the Flemish Radio Choir are, just like the whole world, shocked by the dramatic events of last Tuesday in ‘their’ Brussels. Our hearts go out to the many victims, their families, close ones, and everyone who has been affected directly and indirectly.

 We sympathize deeply as human beings, but also as a Flemish art institution that has her home in Brussels, but also not in the last place as musicians. We cannot help but make our voice heard. A voice that, as a result of the more than 18 different nationalities in our orchestra and choir – every one of them having made Brussels their home – sounds in many languages. But the one language we all speak, that unites our voices, is music…

 “What we can offer in these times of unspeakable sorrow, torn apart lives, growing distrust and distance between people, is that music. Music bonds, helps with healing, with dealing and overcoming, bringing people together. The idea arose spontaneously with the musicians. Minister of Culture Sven Gatz and Mayor Yvan Mayeur were immediately interested. Thus we managed to create this moment at the steps of the Bourse on short notice,” says Gunther Broucke, general manager of Brussels Philharmonic and the Flemish Radio Choir.

 On Friday March 25 at 15h the musicians and singers of Brussels Philharmonic and the Flemish Radio Choir will come to the heart of ‘their’ city, the Bourse Square, where so many have gathered already in a spirit of togetherness and healing. The orchestra and choir will bring “Ode to Joy” from Beethoven’s 9th Symphony: not only the European anthem, but also a call for peace, a hymn of hope for the future. We call on everyone to let your voices be heard together with ours.

Date & location

Brussel – Bourse Square| Friday March 25 2016 – 15h00


brussels bourse square



  • Eddie Mars says:

    I admire the initiative… but it seems the wrong work for Good Friday in the wake of a tragedy?

    • Pianofortissimo says:

      Yes, the idea of singing the ”Ode to Joy” in a Good Friday just a few days after a terror attack is simply insane.

      • OdetoJoy says:

        Who are you to tell them what is or isn’t insane, or what they should or should not do? That is extraordinarily rude.

  • nancy says:

    tTe citizens and friends of Brussels need care and support, and it is therefore deeply moving and sincerely appreciated that through this action, music, musical institutions, national symbols, and a community of people, give their most sincere expression of solidarity.

  • Mick says:

    They have just downgraded the security level from 4 back to 3 again, like before the attacks (as if it ever was “safe” enough before…). What’s wrong with our “leaders”? Who are they working for? Or are they just suicidal or plain crazy?

  • Valerie Bryan says:

    Neither insane, nor the wrong work….. the overwhelming message of Beethoven’s Ninth Symphony is “Alle Menschen werden Brüder” – all people will become Brothers……

  • Adrienne says:

    Thank you! In this world of madness some sanity! For the comment re leaders – we all voted for them so wear it and become more vigilant – please note US citizens and learn from the past. Take a lot more care as to whom you vote for and look to the future.