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Favourite Symphonies
18 Dec 2014

It's been a while since I last wrote anything, so in order to break the silence I thought I would compile a list, as seems to be the fashion these days. This is a list of my favourite symphonies at the time of writing. It's a difficult thing to do because the order can change over time and may depend on what mood I'm in. This is one of the more appealing aspects of music or indeed any art form, that it is not set in stone but depends on the transitory perceptiveness of the listener; indeed, if art does not do this it has failed in its primary purpose which is to stimulate.

1.SchubertSymphony No 9Quite simply the most perfect expression of the symphonic form ever written.
2.Vaughan WilliamsSymphony No 5Vaughan Williams at his very best.
3.SibeliusSymphony No 7Sibelius perfected his minimalist approach to the symphony in this, one of his last works.
4.ShostakovichSymphony No 7A symphony which is remarkable for what it doesn't represent, and which will merit a blog article of its own in due course.
5.BrucknerSymphony No 7In the list on the strength of its slow movement, which is one of the most emotionally-charged symphonic movements of all time.
6.KaramanovSymphony No 23A wonderful work from a little-known composer who deserves much better recognition.
7.MoeranSymphony in GA superb symphony by a composer who is at last gaining the reputation he deserves.
8.BeethovenSymphony No 7Beethoven's music needs no introduction. This is his finest symphony in my view.
9.ElgarSymphony No 2It took me a long while to fully appreciate this work but now I recognise it as a masterpiece.
10.MahlerSymphony No 3A difficult choice between this and Mahler's delighfully quirky 7th, but the magnificent last movement gives this the edge.