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Beethoven: Symphony No. 9 in D minor, Op. 125 (1977)

Berliner Philharmonic Orchestra , Herbert von Karajan  |  NR |  DVD
4.9 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (20 customer reviews)

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Beethoven: Symphony No. 9 in D minor, Op. 125 + Tchaikovsky: Symphonies 4, 5 & 6 + Herbert Von Karajan - New Year's Concert 1988 - Prokofiev Symphony No. 1 & Tchaikovsky Piano Concerto No. 1 / Kissin
Price for all three: $68.15

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Product Details

  • Actors: Berliner Philharmonic Orchestra
  • Directors: Herbert von Karajan
  • Writers: Ludwig van Beethoven
  • Format: Multiple Formats, Classical, Color, NTSC, Widescreen
  • Language: English
  • Subtitles: English
  • Region: All Regions
  • Aspect Ratio: 1.33:1
  • Number of discs: 1
  • Rated: NR (Not Rated)
  • Studio: EuroArts
  • DVD Release Date: March 25, 2008
  • Run Time: 68 minutes
  • Average Customer Review: 4.9 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (20 customer reviews)
  • ASIN: B0013XZ6IO
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #53,797 in Movies & TV (See Top 100 in Movies & TV)

Special Features


Editorial Reviews


Listeners who already own the magnificent recording of the 9th Symphony made in 1963 with the celebrated soprano Gundula Janowitz may wonder what might be different from this 1977 DVD recording. While the quality of the vocal soloists may be slightly lower in the present recording, the symphony overall possesses a spontaneity and energy resulting from the live performance that a studio recording just cannot achieve. Also, listeners who may have never seen Karajan conduct may be surprised to see the remarkably robust sound and energy he produces with amazingly small, conservative movements of his baton. The orchestra and chorus are both in top shape and the recorded sound quality throughout is superb. If you're able to enjoy this DVD in either Dolby Digital or DTS surround sound, you're in for an encompassing, gripping performance from start to finish. --, Mike D. Brownell, June 2008

Product Description

Herbert von Karajan conducts the Berlin Philharmonic and Chor der Deutschen Oper Berlin with soloists Anna Tomowa-Sinto, Agnes Baltsa, Rene Kollo, and Jose Van Dam.

Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews
30 of 31 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A Wonderful Ninth April 4, 2008
This is indeed a spectacular Ninth. You can see Karajan's total involvement from the opening bars. What makes it great for me, though, is not only the playing and singing, but the video treatment of the conductor and orchestra. Unfortunately, I find many Karajan's videos spoiled because of really odd camera treatments. The orchestra is lined up in an artificial way, or it is highlighted in a way that it detracts from the music. None of that here. Karajan said that he made videos so as to preserve his art. This is one of the few videos that really captures the essence of Karajan and the Berlin Philharmonic.
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14 of 15 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A great orchestra and their conductor at their peak October 26, 2008
By RaabH
Aside from featuring a superb performance of Beethoven's (and arguably music's) greatest symphony, this DVD also delivers an exciting and unintrusive visual experience thanks to the thoughtful direction of Sir Humphrey Burton. Unlike later video productions of the BPO that were directed by Karajan himself, this one does not attempt any fancy video effects or spend too much time focusing on the conductor. Instead the camera seems to instinctively know what we want to see, whether it is a particular instrumental or vocal soloist, the entire orchestra tearing into a climax, or the moment in the fourth movement when the chorus finally stands up after being seated for over an hour.

Since I grew up admiring Karajan's work and particularly have enjoyed his recordings from the 60's and 70's, this production provided a fantastic opportunity for me to watch him conduct a live concert when he was at the height of his fame. Remarkably, he stands before the orchestra with no podium and no score, and shows an economy of gesture that is perhaps the direct opposite of the more demonstrative style of his contemporary Leonard Bernstein.

Video and sound quality are both excellent, especially considering their 1970's vintage.
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6 of 6 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Joyous ode and hymn of thanks October 12, 2008
By yuwc
Verified Purchase
Unbelievable performance! There are lots of available CDs and DVDs from Karajan and the BPO. With the Karajan centenary winding down in terms of releases, though AUDITE still has yet to release the Symp No 9 from a 1957 live recording, this DVD performance taken from a New Year's eve concert can only be described as an ode to joy culminating in a hymnlike performance of thanks.

The intensity of the opening movement and the weight of the playing (not weight to clog the sounds) is amazing. The timpanis in the 2nd movement
was right on cue. I was expecting them to burst open anytime! The 3rd movement is totally engaging and it was over even before i had time to take in a breath.

The 4th is a wonder of pure joy. While the Karajan we know from the many studio records with the smooth sound, here there is an excitement felt from the very first movement that something special was at hand. At the end, there was no doubt the audience felt that way. A standing ovation well deserved by all.

A quite superb performance!
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8 of 9 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars One of the finest April 11, 2008
Verified Purchase
A very compelling performance of Beethoven 9th. The camera work is much better than the other DG Beethoven films showing Karajan and BPO. There are many shots of the whole orchestra, Singers and players. You fill like sitting at Philharmonie hall and enjoying the music created by a great man. One of the best performances of Beethoven in 20th century
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5 of 6 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A must-have Ninth! May 3, 2008
This is one of the best Ninths avaible in video, if not the best. Karajan at his peak gives us an astounding and inspired music. The soloists, Tomowa-Sintow, Baltsa, Kollo and Van Dam really knows how to sing this piece.
The camera's work is also wonderful. Even if this wasn't a so good performance, musically, it would still be a very fine video, as we are accostumed from Unitel. Indeed, a must-have Ninth!
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Absolutely spectacular! June 21, 2012
By Terry
Verified Purchase
This is one of my all time favorite videos. I have it on VHS, which is the main reason I kept my VHS player hooked up. I was waiting for the dvd, and here it is! Beethoven is my favorite composer, and this is my favorite piece of music ever. I also admire Karajan conducting, and will buy his version of productions first, especially the Germanic composers. Besides the performance, what I like about this video is that the filming lets you see the whole orchestra, and is a better concert experience. I thought I bought this performance on dvd a few years back, but it was a different version that relied too much on close ups of the instruments and Karajan's baton. Not the case here. Best of all, look at Karajan's face at the end of the performance, and the kiss to the orchestra. I love this video!
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars King Karajan December 26, 2011
Verified Purchase
Karajan's technique on conducting will never be surpassed by any conductors. He was and is the best. A Larry Bird, Michael Jordan and Magic Johnson combined, in conducting. Unbelievable!
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4 of 5 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Beethoven at his best May 17, 2009
Verified Purchase
A conclusion of Beethoven's music. If one likes Beethoven, one likes the Symphony No 9. Karajan does his utmost. A DVD that should be seen and heard by every one who appreciates classic music.
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Most Recent Customer Reviews
4.0 out of 5 stars Birthday present for a 90 year old.
Enjoyed the DVD very much and was surprised when she actually played the DVD. She had no idea that you could actually buy anything like and enjoyed the music in her home.
Published 6 months ago by Ruth Burke
4.0 out of 5 stars Disappointment
I have to subtract one star from this DVD only because it lists subtitles in different languages including English; this is why I bought this particular DVD after an exhaustive... Read more
Published 8 months ago by John W. Reed
5.0 out of 5 stars Glorious
It is an extraordinary performance of mankind's most glorious composition. And it was a pleasure just to watch Maestro Karajan conduct. It doesn't get any better than this.
Published 10 months ago by J. W. Boyd
5.0 out of 5 stars Beethoven as it should be.
Other reviewers have commented on the power and grandeur of this performance. I can only echo the highest praise for the pulse and intensity of the performance.
Published 16 months ago by G.F.S
5.0 out of 5 stars Beethoven, the greatest
The hymn of the world. My composer. What a soul. Only in the suffering we can able to understand what we are, and that human being deserved respect regardless of race.
Published 18 months ago by Miguel Nunez
5.0 out of 5 stars Beethoven Symphony no. 9
A awesome interpretation of the Beethoven Symphony no. 9 and a excellent director and the sound of the Berlin Phlharmonic Orchestra is fantastic.
Published 20 months ago by M. Blanco
5.0 out of 5 stars One of the best Karajan concert video !
The Karajan concert video series filmed in the 1980s were directed and edited by Karajan himself, and most of people do not like the way he filmed his own concerts. Read more
Published on February 10, 2012 by Albert
5.0 out of 5 stars It is very wonderful.
There was no stock in Japan, and it bought it with amazon us.
We wish to express our gratitude for having safely arrived.
This dvd is my treasure.
It values it. Read more
Published on July 1, 2011 by TOMOMI WAKABAYASI
5.0 out of 5 stars Intensity, intensity and more.
This was a stunning work. And i don't know of a better performance. What I both loved and then wasn't sure about was the fact that i finally knew in english what the vocalists... Read more
Published on October 17, 2010 by mickalo
5.0 out of 5 stars Wonderful interpretation - but where is the supplement?
This is fascinating footgae of the 31 December 1977 Karajan-led performance of Beethoven's 9th symphony from the Berliner Philharmonie. Read more
Published on January 27, 2009 by Mr. R. Lee-van Den Daele
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