Top Twenty Symphonies


My relationship with classical music has been erratic. As a young child I was aware of the textural glories of the sound, but the burgeoning, accessible, immediate pop sounds all around me resulted in my abandoning any interest. As adulthood progressed into impending approaching old age, with children grown up, time, tolerance, and an inquisitive taste, I had cause  to reassess, with the inevitable delights that has brought. My only test of music now is, “Is it any good”? Tribal loyalties long since abandoned. I also became aware of how many pop favourites were lifted from the classics. Compare Rachmaninov’s Piano Concerto no 2, Adagio Sostenuto with Eric Carmen’s power ballad “All By Myself”.

I am awful at remembering my favourites. So here follows my  twenty symphonic favourites, in no particular order. The Germans, as well as being good at football also seem to be good at this classical stuff too.

Dvorjak- new world

Shostakovich – Leningrad

Prokofiev – Fifth

Beethoven – no 3

Beethoven – 9th

Mozart – 41st

Mahler- No 9

Mahler -No 2

Brahms No 4

Berlioz- Fantastique

Brahms -1st

Mahler -3rd

Tchaikovsky -6th

Elgar – 2nd

Sibelius- 2nd

Stravinsky- Symphony of Psalms

Shostakovich – 5th

Rachmaninov -2nd

Mozart -40th

Bruckner -5th

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2 Responses to Top Twenty Symphonies

  1. Great list, though I don’t know the Stravinsky so will have a listen to that. I’d have to add Beethoven’s 7th …

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