Beethoven’s “Ode to Joy” Movingly Flashmobbed in Spain

Flashmob performances haven’t been a fresh concept for some time. And they’ve been somewhat taken over by corporations during recent years. But that doesn’t stop viewers from enjoying the performances, whether in person or on the web. Take this recent example orchestrated by the financially-challenged Spanish bank, Banco Sabadell.

Earlier this summer, the bank brought together 100 musicians and singers from the Orchestra Simfonica del Valles,Amics de l’Opera de Sabadell,Coral Belles Arts, and Cor Lieder Camera to perform the anthem of the European Union — Beethoven’s “Ode to Joy” from his Symphony No. 9. It all happens in the Plaça de Sant Roc in Sabadell, Spain, a little north of Barcelona. Perhaps this will put a smile on your face. Maybe you’ll even shed a tear. One way or another, make sure you turn up your speakers….

For more flashmob classical performances see:

Copenhagen Philharmonic Plays Ravel’s Bolero at Train Station

Copenhagen Philharmonic Plays Grieg’s Peer Gynt in the Subway

Opera in the Fruit & Veggie Market

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Comments (39)
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  • joan says:

    so wonderful! the young curly-haired child clad in red, atop the pole, expresses what i imagine beethoven meant to convey, in a piece that he titled ‘ode to joy’. just lovely.
    (the attractive man in the turquoise button down (whom i am imagining to be a univ. professor come upon the scene!) exclaims ‘wow’! my feelings exactly.
    thank you for this.

  • Myra says:

    Very beautiful! It was organized by a bank, so maybe more of a cash mob? Nonetheless very enjoyable.

  • Jordi says:

    The Ode to joy organized by a spanish bank? I agree it’s very moving, but it also takes some nerve, if you ask me.
    I think the one below depicts much better the current situation, and the feelings of the terminally mortgaged spanish citizenship towards their banks.

    (you don’t need to know spanish to get that it’s not a very joyful song)

  • Karen says:

    Sometimes you have to just relax and enjoy beauty where you find it, without searching for the motivation behind it. Look at the crowd’s faces. Look at the children’s reactions. Look at the musicians smiling. This was beautiful and I loved it. Thanks for posting it.

  • Christine says:

    Whether it’s corporately organized by a bank or a “true” flash mob, it doesn’t diminish the beauty of the music or or the delight of the crowd. I thoroughly enjoyed this; thank you for posting it and the other links as well.

  • Jordi says:

    I don’t know if any of the previous two messages have anything to do with mine (the third one), but in case I’ve been messundestood, let me acknowledge that I have also enjoyed this majestic piece of music and the people’s reaction to it, wich I believe to be genuine; yet, I thought it would be interesting to give an alternative perspective in the form of another heartfelt bank performance, this time from the point of view of the people.

    I didn’t want to be a party pooper: enjoy Beethoven, of course, but please, keep in mind “la Chunami” (the singer in the link)

  • Donn Dufford says:

    Many many years ago, my bank brought free concerts to the locals in several communities once a month. When the bank was bought, the music sadly stopped. To bring Beethoven or any classical works to people is a gift I wish more companies and individuals would do. This is truly amazing. And to see the happy faces on the very old and the very young, and those in between if priceless. Thank you for sharing this wonderful few minutes.

  • Randy says:

    Any 20th-century science fiction film franchise theme would have been a better choice, and certainly as popular. “Can you sense the Creator, world?” Of course not.

  • Berolina says:

    So moving,yes I shed a tear and some more. Heavenly music!Look at the faces!

  • Gaynor says:

    WOW! Have always loved this piece and especially when it’s played at either a Solheim Cup or Ryder Cup event when the Euros win! Wonderful adaptation!

  • Rachel says:

    I’ve watched this about 10 times now and cried every time. Absolutely wonderful. Now that’s a bank I want to leave my money in :)

  • Simon Brown says:

    The cynic in me was counting the number of instruments and multiplying it by the number of €200 fines and confiscations and denuncios that there would be if that actually WAS spontaneous. If you’re a bank it seems you’re allowed to busk in the streets but not if you’re a citizen…

  • What a gift! Thank you for posting the link. One only has to look at the faces in the crowd to realize that music of this depth and magnitude crosses all boundaries. This same song was sung as I walked up the aisle with my father to get married and, of course, watching the video brought back those memories too:)

  • Through my tears I can only say….thank you, Banco Sabadell. How can I give to you as you have given to me.
    Expressed earlier, I too, have watched this over ten times and not failed to weep. The expressions of the human soul exude in musician and viewer alike. Can’t imagine how I would have felt by being there. There is a God.

  • One note to add here. How many of those people witnessing the event never had the means to have purchased a ticket to the palaces where only the well to do could be privy to view the talent of both the musicians and the composers genius. Again, I believe we have all witnessed a moment in humankind. Verified by the over eight million online views.

  • Brenda Wilkinson says:

    What a wonderful spontaneous rendering of this magnificent piece of music. I was conducting it in my office and in tears at the same time.

  • Meredith says:

    Regardless if this was “paid for” by a bank or not, I echo the sentiments expressed by most that this is more about the JOY that music brings – a way to transcend, for even a few minutes, the realities of our challenged times. It gives me a glimmer of hope for the goodness and talent in humankind (despite the messes we make!), and shows how powerful a medium music can be to touch people. I, too, have watched and shared this many times and never fail to have an emotional response – alternating between choking up and wanting to jump up and applaud!
    Thank you for sharing…

  • Lucia says:

    I thought this was just magnificent!!! Fantastic!!! Superior!!! Wonderful!!! Music such as this is the universal language! It brings people from all ages together!!! It gets 5 stars!

  • Joshua says:

    I wonder what text the chorus was singing. It’s not the German text by Schiller from Beethoven’s 9th Symphony. Was it a Spanish or Catalan translation of the text?

  • Michael Moyer says:

    I just watched this on my phone in my car and I can’t go into my appt because I’m crying. Thank you for posting.

  • anna says:

    It’s in Catalan, Joshua.I believe it’s a version by the poet Joan Maragall.

  • Jose Gosalvez says:

    To Myra, Jordi…Music is for the soul…Never ever Political…so close your eyes and enjoy the notes emmanating from all the instruments…It will soothe
    ones souls…THAT IS IF ONE HAS A SOUL!!!
    So close your eyes and LISTEN…Music is ones own freedom…liberation from severydays common drudgery…ENJOY!!!

  • Brenda Blakeman says:

    IIt is beautiful and went right to my heart.I am. Addicted to that video .When I am feeling down it brings me up.It is a delight to watch.Very much loved. Thank you Brenda Blakeman Windsor Ontario Canada.

  • DAVID LIEN says:

    Wonderful thing between nation

  • mari says:

    beautiful. gracias
    vaya con Dios

  • mari says:

    vayan con Dios

  • john says:

    I am from America, so look at it through those eyes. A BANK did this. Impressive. Corporate? This is what a European flash-mob looks like? Not skipping around to non-instruments babbling some incoherence? I am no fan of banks, but this was surprising and very nice.

  • Arty says:

    Brilliant marketing move! Also amazing way to share how amazing classical music is.

  • Barbara says:

    This has to be my favourite flash mob. The music is great. I esoecially loved the last part where everyone was singing/playing. The look on the one mans face toward the end said it all. He said. wow and it was a wow. What a wonderful thing the bank did by bringing everyone together for this memorable performance. Thanks!

  • Selena says:

    Absolutely inspiring. Even the audience played a part in transmtting the joy of the performance.

  • Jim says:

    Banks lend money, house buyers borrow it. What’s wrong about that?

    The wrong bit is that everywhere, banks lend money they don’t have; it’s bogus money, created by government out of thin air. Therefore, it’s too easily available and that greatly increases the price of homes. If they loaned out only what they earned, mortgages would be much harder to get and prices would be far lower.

  • k w says:

    What joy after such a devastating year which is still continuing
    it’s negativity into the New year/ This definitely lifted one’s
    spirit & soul. Thank you to ALL THE MUSICIANS who lifted us all
    into a joyful New Year!!! Jan 1, 2021 – Vancouver, B.C. Canada

  • Peggy hatfield says:

    Im from America. Have watched it over and over. Amazing. I felt the joy and you could see the joy on all present. Was man in the begining part of the orchestra? Bravo Bravo

  • Donna McCord says:

    Uplifting and inspiring at a time when we all need more of both. Thank you!

  • Martin Seebach says:

    It sometimes brings a tear or three. It is a beautiful thing, “too beautiful to fail.” Most yanks may recognize our 2008 banking debacle there. Bravo, an excellent piece and ENCORE! Vaya con Dios, a bientot.

  • Marshall Brown says:

    Who was the conductor for this great flashmob performance of Ode to Joy? This performance is my favorite of all time for the great Beethoven classic!

  • Marshall Brown says:

    Who was the conductor for this flashmob performance of Ode to Joy? This performance is my favorite of all time for the great Beethoven classic!

  • Aditi says:

    If you find out, do let me know!

  • AndyB says:

    They were singing in Catalan, in Joan Maragall’s excellent translation.

    Joia, que ets del déus guspira
    generada dalt del cel,
    vent de foc el pit respira
    sota el plecs del teu gran vel.
    Si ajuntar-se el cors demanen
    que un mal vent va separant,
    tots els homes s’agermanen
    on les ales van tocant.
    Si fortuna generosa
    ens ha donat un bon company
    o companya graciosa
    cantarem amb més afany.

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