1. Sketches and myths; 2. First impressions; 3. Performance and tradition; 4. The Romantic Ninth; 5. The twentieth-century Ninth; Conclusion: beyond interpretation?; Appendices.
Nicholas Cook's guide charts the dramatic transformation in the reception of Symphony No. 9.
"A key problem with the Ninth, Cook notes, is that we've heard it so often that we no longer truly hear it. This book is an antidote; by examining the difficulties the work has caused auditors right from its premiere, Cook undermines our facile familiarity." Bernard D. Sherman, Fanfare