Brahms Symphony No. 1 in C minor, Op. 68

Symphony No. 1 in C minor, Op. 68, by Johannes Brahms was first performed in 1876, conducted by Felix Otto Dessoff, a friend of the composer. It took Brahms at least 14 years to complete, the first sketches dating from 1862. The long gestation of the symphony may be put down to two factors: on the one hand, Brahms' self-critical fastidiousness which led him to destroy many of his early works, and, on the other hand, the expectation of Brahms' friends and the public that Brahms would continue "Beethoven's inheritance" and produce a symphony of commensurate dignity and intellectual scope—an expectation which Brahms felt he could not fulfill easily in view of the monumental reputation of Beethoven. The work is in the typical four movements, scored for two flutes, two oboes, two clarinets, two bassoons, contrabassoon, four horns, two trumpets, three trombones, timpani and strings. A typical performance lasts approximately 45 to 50 minutes.
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Recordings

Symphony No. 1 in C Minor, Op. 68 - I. Un poco sostenuto - Allegro
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Symphony No. 1 in C Minor, Op. 68 - II. Andante sostenuto
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Symphony No. 1 in C Minor, Op. 68 - III. Un poco allegretto e grazioso
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Symphony No. 1 in C Minor, Op. 68 - IV. Adagio - Più andante - Allegro non troppo, ma con brio
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