The Utah Symphony will conclude their and countdown of all nine Beethoven symphonies with Beethoven's Symphony No. 1 on Friday, May 25, and Saturday, May 26, led by and Music Director Thierry Fischer. Richard Strauss' tone poem, "An Alpine Symphony," will also be featured on the program, as well as "Saint Vitus in the Kettle," which marks the symphony's debut performance of the piece and of music by Simon Holt, whom Fischer and the orchestra have commissioned to write a new work scheduled to premiere in the 2012-2013 Utah Symphony season. Single tickets for the performance range from $17 to $51 and can be purchased by phone at (801) 355-ARTS (2787), in person at the Abravanel Hall ticket office (123 W. South Temple) or online by visiting www.utahsymphony.org. Discounted student tickets will be available on the date of the performance. Ticket prices will increase $5 when purchased on the day of the performance.
Completed when he was about 31, the First Symphony is a remarkably successful, and downright cheery, stab at an extended musical composition scored for an orchestra. Influenced by his mentor Haydn and Mozart, the symphony departs from those lofty influences in its more prominent use of wind instruments and the marked use of crescendo and decrescendo that show hints of his Romantic future. While not as game-changing as his Third or Seventh symphonies, the First shows the near-perfection of the Classical (capital "C") symphony, firmly anchored among the compositions of that type en vogue on the Viennese musical scene at the time. But Beethoven's experimental side is apparent, because, like Kanye West, he didn't know how to write boring or unoriginal. (Upon further reflection, they had similar temperaments.)