GCSE Guide to the Classical Symphony

The Symphony is a cornerstone of classical music. Explore its structure through the lens of Beethoven's iconic Symphony No.5, first movement.

The Classical Symphony is an area of study relevant to the Edexcel, AQA, CCEA and WJEC/Eduqas GCSE Music syllabuses.

After performing the first movement of Beethoven’s Symphony No. 5 in our GCSE BrightSparks concert in November 2023, we have compiled some resources to help you teach, learn about, and revise the Classical Symphony form, through the lens of this iconic masterpiece.

Download the PowerPoint presentation or PDF file below to find out more about the history, structure, and musical elements of the Classical Symphony.

Watch the LPO perform the first movement of Beethoven’s Symphony No. 5, and look out for the labels on the screen to help you identify and revise the structure of the movement.

This resource was created by Rachel Leach and the London Philharmonic Orchestra.

BrightSparks is generously funded by the Rothschild Foundation with additional support from the Candide Trust, Dunard Fund, Rivers Foundation, Mr & Mrs Philip Kan, Gill and Julian Simmonds.


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