The New Zealand Symphony Orchestra's Beethoven Festival came to a predictably rousing choral conclusion.

Was it just nine months ago that the orchestra signed off its 2018 season with this Choral Symphony, featuring the same conductor and choir as well as two of the four soloists featured in the festival?

With this finale sold out weeks in advance, might this mammoth work have the potential to become an annual institution, one wonders, a symphonic alternative to Messiah? Facetiousness aside, this Ninth Symphony sat well alongside its predecessor, the resolutely cheery Eighth, written during just four months in 1812.

Maestro Edo