June 2, 2016

Tears for “Joy”

Beethoven premiered his Ninth Symphony on May 7, 1824 at the Kaerntnertortheater in Vienna. The most unique feature of “The Ninth” was the chorus and vocal soloists in the final movement.

His “Ode to Joy” based on Friedrich Schiller’s poem has become one of the most recognized melodies.

Although his deafness did not allow him to conduct, Beethoven was on stage for the first time in twelve years. Because he was facing the orchestra, he could not see the audience. Intent on making sure the tempo was right, he was beating time – which he continued to do even after the performance was over.

Taking his arm, the alto soloist turned Beethoven so he could see the audience’s reaction. Although he could not hear their roaring approval, Beethoven saw their clapping hands and smiling faces. Bowing deeply to the premiere’s concertgoers, he began to cry.

Even if you are as talented in your business as Beethoven was in music, there will be a time when you have to accept your “deafness”. The logical choice would be for you to delegate your duties to somebody else before that happens. You will spare yourself the tears and will be a legend in the eyes of your customers and/or all the people knowing you.

Owning the business or not, managers have many ways to realize that.

The oldie of the week: Beethoven (Andre Rieu conducting) – Ode To Joy (1824)

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