To launch the fifth season of the Beyond the Score series, the Chicago Symphony Orchestra and guest conductor Antonio Pappano surveyed Mendelssohn’s Symphony No. 4 (Italian). Recorded in November 2010, under the supervision of BTS Creative Director Gerard McBurney, the program uses narration and live musical examples to provide an in-depth look at Mendelssohn’s masterwork, including never-before-heard excerpts of earlier versions of the symphony. McBurney narrates the performance, which also features actors James Graham and Roger Mueller. Pierre Boulez, Helen Regenstein conductor emeritus, introduces the video.

Though the Italian Symphony eventually became one of the composer’s most popular works, it was performed only twice during his lifetime and not published until 1851, four years after his death.

To read more about the symphony, click here.