Following Beethoven’s Ninth is the story of people whose lives have been transformed, repaired and healed by the message of Beethoven’s Ode to Joy and his final symphony, ‘All Men Will Be Brothers’.
At Tiananmen Square in 1989, students played the Ninth over loudspeakers as the army came in to crush their protests for freedom. In Chile, women under the Pinochet dictatorship sang the Ninth at torture prisons, and those inside took hope when they heard the music.
Shortly after the Berlin Wall, symbol of division and oppression, came down in November 1989, Leonard Bernstein conducted Beethoven’s Ninth as an “Ode to Freedom” on both sites of the Berlin Wall to celebrate this historic moment.
Part road trip, part adventure story this film is an intimate exploration as to the enduring impact and meaning of this moving, iconic piece of music that continues to inspire and uplift nearly two centuries after being first performed.