Bottom of the Ninth


Course description

There is a curse in the world of classical music! For the superstitious musician, it seems that after Ludwig van Beethoven wrote his 9th symphony, “no one”—not even Beethoven himself—could complete a 10th. It’s not quite that clear-cut, but with remarkable recurrence, a composer’s 9th symphony is the last one penned before dying. Opera composers are more prolific, chamber music arrives in greater profusion, but that 10th Symphony is an elusive thing.

In this class we will consider a host of musical 9ths, from the great orchestral symphonies to less well-known works and concepts from the classical music repertoire; and we’ll explore a few 10ths as we go, searching out the power of these late-life works. No prior experience in music is required.

Please note that the start date of this course has changed to one week earlier (Jan. 22nd) than originally published in the Jan. - Aug. 2018 Calendar.

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