The Symphonies You Love

By Cheryl Willoughby

music for Mahler's Symphony No. 2
Do you know this symphony? Write it in the comments area below!

Symphonies We Love filled the month of February with your choices of brilliant music and beautiful stories

Like a handful of snowflakes, February has already melted away!

When Classical New England launched Symphonies We Love on February 1st we had two goals in mind. First, to fill the midwinter atmosphere with some of the greatest classical music ever written. And in the process, to gain some insight into these symphonies through your stories.

And what wonderful stories you had! We could not have anticipated the hundreds of responses you offered to that simple encouragement to “tell us about a Symphony You Love”. We heard from so many of you in so many different ways: through our own web page, along with phone calls, letters, emails, Facebook messages, chance meetings in public, and even via our #LuvSyms tag on Twitter!

Truly there are Symphonies we Love, for very personal, and touching reasons.

BeethovenFrom our listener Mitch, we discovered the connection to his father offered by Beethoven’s 5th Symphony. It was a piece his father introduced him to very early on, and then his father passed away at a young age from multiple sclerosis. Mitch wrote, “now when I listen to some of his favorites, it seems to bring him right back into the room.”

Another listener, Dan, describes himself as “a country boy at heart”, and offers Beethoven’s homage to nature, the Symphony No. 6, the "Pastoral," as one to which he can most relate.

And we learned that your musical tastes are as widely cast as where you listen! In addition to submissions from the six New England states, we had comments from listeners in faraway places, including California, Italy, and Florida. Musically, we found out that right up there with Beethoven and Brahms, Nicolai Myaskovsky’s 27th, Tan Dun’s “1997”, Malcom Arnold’s 3rd, and Samuel Wesley’s A Major also deserve a place among the Symphonies We Love.

Thank you so much for taking some time to get in touch and share your stories, memories, and special connections to this music! Here are the symphonies that generated the most conversation over the last month through your comments, requests and stories. In alphabetical order, they are:

Ludwig Van Beethoven: Symphony No. 5 in C minor, Op. 67
Ludwig Van Beethoven: Symphony No. 6 in F Major, Op. 68, "Pastoral"
Ludwig Van Beethoven: Symphony No. 7 in A Major, Op. 92
Ludwig Van Beethoven: Symphony No. 9 in D minor, Op. 125, "Ode to Joy"
Johannes Brahms: Symphony No. 1 in C minor, Op. 68
Antonín Dvorák: Symphony No. 8 in G Major, Op. 88
Antonín Dvorák: Symphony No. 9 in E minor, Op. 95, "From the New World"
Gustav Mahler: Symphonies No. 1 in D Major
Gustav Mahler: Symphony No. 2, "Resurrection"
Camille Saint-Saëns: Symphony No. 3 in C minor, Op. 78, "Organ"
Franz Schubert: Symphony No. 8 in B minor, D.759, "Unfinished"
Jean Sibelius: Symphony No. 2 in D Major, Op. 43

Read about Symphonies Loved by the Classical New England staff.

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