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Music Review: 'Symphony No. 1'

Posted on

Symphony No. 1

type:
Music
Current Status:
In Season
performer:
Joe Jackson
genre:
Classical

We gave it an A-

Best known for his mold-breaking film scores (Citizen Kane, Psycho, Taxi Driver), New York-born Bernard Herrmann (1911-1975) led a respectable second life as a serious composer. His one symphony dates from 1940 and was premiered by the New York Philharmonic. Rawboned and edgy, it reveals along its 36-minute course the hand of a skilled craftsman, capable of projecting grand dramatic ideas. Symphony No. 1 doesn’t shake completely free from movieland melodramatics, it does manage some impressive and dramatic statements, and even finds room in the boisterous second movement for some borrowings from a worthy ancestor, the Ninth Symphony of Beethoven. The work is exuberantly delivered by the Phoenix Symphony, newly revitalized by its young conductor, James Sedares.