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Genesis and Genius

Episode 1 of 4

Simon Russell Beale's series looking at the history of the symphony begins with Haydn's arrival in England in 1791 and continues with Mozart and Beethoven.

Simon Russell Beale presents a radical reappraisal of the place of the symphony in the modern world and explores the surprising way in which it has shaped our history and identity.

The first episode begins amidst the turmoil of the French Revolution with the arrival in England of Joseph Haydn, dubbed the 'Father of the Symphony'. It continues with Mozart, the genius who wrote his first symphony at the age of eight, and Beethoven, the revolutionary who created the idea of the artist as hero and whose Eroica Symphony changed music for ever.

The music is performed by the Orchestra of the Age of Enlightenment, conducted by Sir Mark Elder.

1 hour

Last on

Fri 30 Jan 2015 20:00

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Go deeper into the music and unravel the secrets of the Symphony with The Open University.

Go to The Open University's Symphony site

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Read Andy's post on the BBC TV blog


Role Contributor
Presenter Simon Russell Beale
Producer Andy King-Dabbs
Director Andy King-Dabbs
Series Producer Helen Mansfield
Conductor Mark Elder
Orchestra OAE