I nominate Shostakovich 13th Symphony as standing head and shoulders above the competition.
Will elaborate later, but interested to hear alternative nominations first.
To clarify...I mean a symphony that can represent the twentieth century, not just one that was [coincidentally] written in the twentieth century. Yes, there are half a dozen Mahler Symphonies and some major radical Stravinsky offerings that superbly bookended the beginning of the twentieth century.
But, knowing what we now know about the political economy of the 20th century there are reasons for my choice.
This magnificent symphony also accommodates some searing observations and great truths from a great poet; it combines sincerity, clarity of utterance, pathos, drama and symphonic rigour within its 60 minute duration.
My nomination is DSCH#13.
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