Symphony No. 9 in D minor, Op. 125 "Choral"
Considered one of the greatest pieces of music ever written, Beethoven's 9th Symphony is one of the most widely heard pieces in the repertoire of classical music. The Symphony is known as the Choral Symphony from the choir and soloists who sing text from the poem "Ode to Joy" by Freiderich Schiller, in the fourth movement. Beethoven's decision to include voices in the Symphony, a traditionally instrumental genre, mark the first time a major composer had ever done so. Perhaps it was this choice that lead to some critics responding poorly to the work's premiere saying that it was "cryptic and eccentric, the product of a deaf and aging composer." However, the reception the Symphony continues to recieve from audiences around the world continues to show the popularity of the work, including your votes placing the 9th at #5 in our 40 for 40. Whatever the reason audiences adore this work, be it the sublime first movement, lively Shcerzo, or joyous fourth movement, Beethoven's Ninth shows no sign of losing its foothold in the canon of classical music.