The New York Philharmonic

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Switched on Pop: "The 5th"

Posted September 08, 2020

'The Fifth,' the new miniseries on Vox Media Podcast Network’s 'Switched on Pop'

It’s a symphony you recognize instantly from its first four notes: three G-natural eighth notes followed by a long, half-note E-flat. Those are the very first notes the New York Philharmonic ever performed, back in 1842. Now the symphony they introduce, Beethoven’s Fifth, is the subject of a new partnership with Vox Media Podcast Network’s Switched on Pop, the People's Choice winner of the 2020 Webby Award for Best Arts & Culture Podcast.

Hosted by musicologist Nate Sloan and songwriter Charlie Harding, “The 5th” is a four-movement miniseries that explores the music, context, and legacy of Beethoven’s Fifth Symphony. Beginning today discover new insights into what may be the most famous symphony ever written though interviews with our Music Director Jaap van Zweden and President and CEO Deborah Borda, as well as Concertmaster Frank Huang, Associate Principal Oboe Sherry Sylar, Principal Clarinet Anthony McGill, Acting Associate Principal Horn Leelanee Sterrett, and Assistant Principal Timpani / Percussion Kyle Zerna. Together they’ll delve into what makes this iconic work so universally recognizable, how it represents a dramatic break from the Classical tradition that preceded it, and why it remains a symbol of freedom for some and exclusion for others.

Check out all four episodes of “The 5th" — September 8,11, 15, and 18 — on Apple podcasts, and sing it with us: da da da DUH!