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(99)

Rank #148 in Music category

Arts
Music
Performing Arts

San Francisco Symphony Podcasts

Updated 6 days ago

Rank #148 in Music category

Arts
Music
Performing Arts
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Podcasts from the San Francisco Symphony and Music Director Michael Tilson Thomas.

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Podcasts from the San Francisco Symphony and Music Director Michael Tilson Thomas.

iTunes Ratings

99 Ratings
Average Ratings
76
14
1
4
4

Educational and Enjoyable

By Cinderalice125 - Oct 21 2019
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So educational and concise, there’s nothing like it.

SFS

By lledsmar - Apr 10 2016
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Great narrator (Rick Malone) and program notes on classical music.

iTunes Ratings

99 Ratings
Average Ratings
76
14
1
4
4

Educational and Enjoyable

By Cinderalice125 - Oct 21 2019
Read more
So educational and concise, there’s nothing like it.

SFS

By lledsmar - Apr 10 2016
Read more
Great narrator (Rick Malone) and program notes on classical music.
Cover image of San Francisco Symphony Podcasts

San Francisco Symphony Podcasts

Latest release on Jan 17, 2020

The Best Episodes Ranked Using User Listens

Updated by OwlTail 6 days ago

Rank #1: Beethoven's Symphony No. 5

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It's the most famous four-note pattern in all of music. But it's also the key to Beethoven's 5th Symphony—and maybe to Beethoven himself.

Sep 08 2016

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Rank #2: Handel's Messiah

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However you like your Messiah - big or intimate, modern or period, authentic or interpreted—when you listen you become part of an almost 300-year tradition of what may be classical music's most beloved masterpiece.

Dec 01 2016

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Rank #3: Beethoven's Fidelio

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Beethoven's opera Fidelio is a story about the triumph of truth and justice. But it's also a story about the triumph of love.

Jun 23 2015

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Rank #4: Dvorak's New World Symphony

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In June 1891, Antonín Dvořák was invited to direct the newly-formed National Conservatory in New York City. Leaving four of their six children behind in Bohemia, Dvořák and his wife made their new home on East 17th Street in cacophonous Manhattan, just a few blocks from the new school. Through his diverse student body and the advent of the polyrhythmic ragtime, Dvořák first encountered African American and Native American music. He was particularly taken with those cultures’ spirituals. He borrowed musical elements from diverse popular sources for many of his compositions, including his Symphony No. 9, From the New World.

Apr 29 2016

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Rank #5: Brahms' Symphony No. 1

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Beethoven’s first symphony premiered when he was 30. Schubert wrote his first at 16, and Mozart’s was composed when he was only 8. But Johannes Brahms, at 43, had yet to finish his Symphony No. 1, which he’d begun writing more than twenty years previously. A notorious perfectionist, he burned many of his early works and sketches; it was not easy living in the shadow of the giants before him. His many years of preparation were worth it—upon the work’s premiere in 1876, the Vienna press called it “Beethoven’s Tenth.”

Feb 14 2018

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Rank #6: Beethoven's Symphony No. 9

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Often called the greatest piece of music ever written, Beethoven’s Symphony No. 9 was the last he would ever write. The first symphony to feature a chorus and vocal soloists, Symphony No. 9 also includes the famous Ode to Joy.

Jan 30 2017

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Rank #7: Beethoven's - Symphony No. 9

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Beethoven's Symphony No. 9
Often called the greatest piece of music ever written, Beethoven’s Symphony No. 9 was the last he would ever write.  The first symphony to feature a chorus and vocal soloists, Symphony No. 9 also includes the famous “Ode to Joy.” 

click here to enjoy a recording 

May 15 2019

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Rank #8: Vivaldi's "Four Seasons"

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Barking dogs, wind and rain, buzzing bees and slippery ice; they're all part of Vivaldi's Four Seasons, a work that—believe it or not—was almost unknown for 200 years.

May 16 2017

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Rank #9: Beethoven's Symphony No. 7

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The premiere of Symphony No. 7 was perhaps Beethoven’s greatest rock-star moment. Buoyed by the excited troops in whose honor the concert was being performed, he “tore his arms with a great vehemence asunder ... at the entrance of a forte he jumped in the air” (according to orchestra violinist and composer Louis Spohr).

Mar 07 2017

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Rank #10: Gershwin's "Rhapsody in Blue"

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On his conceptualization of Rhapsody in Blue, Gershwin recalled: “It was on the train, with its steely rhythms, its rattlety-bang that is often so stimulating to a composer . . . and there I suddenly heard—and even saw on paper—the complete construction of the rhapsody . . . I heard it as a sort of musical kaleidoscope of America—of our vast melting pot, of our unduplicated national pep, of our metropolitan madness.”

Feb 24 2018

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Rank #11: Beethoven's Piano Concerto No. 5

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By the summer of 1809, Napoleon’s French forces, at war with Austria for the fourth time in eighteen years, reached the suburbs of Vienna. “Nothing but drums, cannons, human misery of every sort!” wrote Beethoven to his publisher in Leipzig. But by year’s end, he had completed his Piano Concerto No. 5, Emperor, a magnificent affirmation made in terrible times.

Jan 25 2018

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Rank #12: Rachmaninoff Symphony No. 2

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Sergei Rachmaninoff wrote his Symphony No. 2 while living in Dresden. At age 33, he was a sought-after conductor and pianist, and had relocated to escape the clamor for his talents. After completing the work, he declared he would never write another symphony, and waited almost thirty years to do so.

Mar 21 2017

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Rank #13: Elgar's "Enigma" Variations

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Improvised at the piano after a strenuous day of teaching, Enigma Variations established Elgar as the pre-eminent British composer of his time. Shrouded in mystery is the “enigma” intended by Elgar, a secret he took with him to the grave. Variation IX, “Nimrod (Adagio),” has become a cherished piece in the popular classical lexicon.

Apr 18 2018

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Rank #14: Shostakovich Symphony No.7 Leningrad

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Shostakovich's 7th Symphony became a symbol of the wartime alliance between the US and the USSR. But the road to victory is never easy, and it wasn't long before both the musical and the political symbols of that alliance disappeared

Oct 23 2019

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Rank #15: Mozart’s Symphony No. 41, Jupiter

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Mozart's final symphony was nicknamed the "Jupiter," and—like the planet and the Roman god that share its name—it still stands out as one of the greatest of its kind.

Apr 29 2016

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Rank #16: Liszt Piano Concerto No. 1

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Liszt Piano Concerto No. 1
Franz Liszt may have been one of the nineteenth century’s most exasperating underachievers, to say nothing of committing the unforgivable sin of success on a staggering scale, but he was a genius. This concerto can remind us. Begun in 1835 at the ripe old age of 24, Liszt did not complete his first piano concerto until nearly twenty years later.  A final draft appeared in 1849, which was revised before the 1855 premiere (conducted by Hector Berlioz), and then revised yet again before its publication in 1856.  Béla Bartók called the concerto “the first perfect realization of cyclic sonata form, with common themes being treated on the variation principle.”

Feb 13 2019

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Rank #17: Tchaikovsky's Symphony No. 5

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Perpetually self-conscious, Tchaikovsky worried in spring 1888 that his imagination had dried up, and that he had nothing left to express through music. Vacationing at his home in Frolovskoe provided all the inspiration he needed, and by August, his Symphony No. 5 was complete.

May 10 2017

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Rank #18: Mozart Symphony No. 31

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When Mozart went to Paris, he may not have found the job he was looking for, but he still found success, with his stylish Symphony No. 31.

Jul 03 2019

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Rank #19: Beethoven's Missa Solemnis

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To set about composing his Missa Solemnis, Beethoven looked to the past. He obtained a copy of the score to J.S. Bach’s B Minor Mass, at that time still unpublished, and also studied the sacred music of C.P.E. Bach. After countless sketches and spiritual preparation, Beethoven composed this work for large orchestra and chorus, dedicating more time to it than to any other work he composed. Written simultaneously with the Symphony No. 9, the Missa Solemnis is considered one of the most significant mass settings in classical music.

May 27 2015

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Rank #20: Mahler’s Das Lied von der Erde

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Gustav Mahler's Song of the Earth may end with a funeral march, but it's really a symphony about the triumph of life and love.

Apr 29 2016

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