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The Symphonie Fantastique (1830) is by far Berlioz’s most popular work. Composed in 1830 under the impact of his sudden passion for Goethe’s Faust drama and for the actress Harriet Smithson, the work bears the subtitle “Episode in the Life of an Artist”. But it proved to be more than an episode in the history of the symphony, thanks to its intensely personal programmatic structure unified by an “idée fixe”; as well as in the history of orchestration, thanks to the new impulses resulting from the imaginative and daring instrumental combinations and techniques.

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Romantic

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Symphonic Poem

As one of the most important new genres of Romantic music, symphonic poems were a real success in the 19th century. The Romantics, especially Hector Berlioz, composed symphonies and other orchestral pieces with literary models. This resulted in freedom in all elements of composition and enabled the creator to direct the listener's emotions and associations even more p...
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Hector Berlioz

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Symphonie fantastique

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