You can still hear Beethoven’s 9th on Boston’s Esplanade…tonight at 7.

The program rained out last night will go forward tonight, so Bostonians still have the opportunity this evening to hear their friends and neighbors sing the Ode to Joy.

Maestro Christopher Wilkins will lead the Landmarks Orchestra and the One City Choir, a choral group made up of members of the Back Bay Chorale and amateur singers from all over the city, in an all-Beethoven program.

The trouble with rainouts is that not everyone knows there may be a rain date.

Tonight’s forecast is mild and pleasant, and the show will go on.

Boston is the only place in the United States where you don’t have to audition to sing in front of 10,000 people.

The One City Choir brings together singers of all levels and places them in the Hatch Shell – and on the apron in front of the audience – and allows them to sing a piece like Beethoven’s 9th.

For roughly half of the singers in tonight’s program, this will be the first time they’ve ever sung the Ode To Joy.

For many of them, it’s their first time singing in German.

For many, it’s the first time they’ve performed in public.

And it’s going to sound great.

“Beethoven is the great equalizer,” says Scott Allen Jarrett, Music Director of the Back Bay Chorale, who’s charged with preparing the One City Choir for prime time.

“The music is of such enduring value that anyone can be successful and find a home in the piece,” Jarrett adds.

“Beethoven was not concerned with the individual performer, as anyone who has ever sung his music can attest. Instead, Beethoven was more interested in what can be done as an ensemble, what’s accomplished by the aggregate.

“You have no idea that it’s actually possible to pull off a performance like this until everybody’s there and it all comes together.”

The crowd may be smaller tonight, simply because fewer people may be aware of the rain date for the program.

But now you know, so come on down to the Hatch Shell, tell your friends, and then see your friends and neighbors remind us of Beethoven’s quest for the brotherhood of mankind.


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