Watch “Franz Schubert – Symphony No.7 in D-major, D.708a (1820/21)” on YouTube

Symphony No. 7 (Schubert)

Symphony by Franz Schubert


Symphony No. 7 is the name given to a four-movement symphony in E major (D 729) drafted by Franz Schubert in August 1821. Although the work (which comprises about 1350 bars) is structurally complete, Schubert only orchestrated the slow introduction and the first 110 bars of the first movement. The rest of the work is, however, continued on 14-stave score pages as a melodic line with occasional basses or counterpoints, giving clues as to changes in orchestral texture.

For the Great C major Symphony, see Symphony No. 9 (Schubert).

Schubert seems to have laid the symphony aside in order to work on his opera Alfonso und Estrella, and never returned to it. The manuscript was given by Schubert’s brother Ferdinand to Felix Mendelssohn and was subsequently acquired by Sir George Grove, who bequeathed it to the Royal College of Music in London. There are at least three completions: by John Francis Barnett (1881), Felix Weingartner (1934) and Brian Newbould (1980). The work is now generally accepted to be Schubert’s Seventh Symphony, an appellation which some scholars had preferred to leave for the chimerical ‘Gastein Symphony’ that was long believed to have been written and lost in 1824.

Instrumentation

This symphony is scored for an even larger orchestral force than Schubert’s eighth and ninth symphonies. The score calls for double woodwinds, four horns, two trumpets, three trombones, timpani and strings.

Movements

Schubert/Weingartner Symphony No. 7 in E major
  1. Adagio ma non troppo – Allegro
  2. Andante
  3. Scherzo: Allegro deciso
  4. Allegro vivace
Schubert/Newbould Symphony No. 7 in E major
  1. Adagio – Allegro
  2. Andante
  3. Scherzo: Allegro
  4. Allegro giusto

(The true marking is ffz rather than fz, but that is not available in LilyPond as implemented on Wikipedia.)

References

Notes
More information: Tap to expand
Sources

Further reading

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