Smartphone apps are changing the way people interact with classical music. But why listen on an iPad?

So Beethoven has an app?

He does now. Beethoven’s Ninth Symphony was created by UK software company Touch Press and released in partnership with Deutsche Grammophon. The app features four recordings of Beethoven’s late masterpiece conducted by Karajan, Gardiner, Fricsay and a filmed performance from Bernstein. Users are able to switch between performances, follow along with a synchronised score or view an overhead perspective of a symphony orchestra that highlights each instrument as it is played. The program also features over 90 minutes of interviews with conductors and instrumentalists.

What can it do that’s different?

The user interface allows you to switch seamlessly between performances without missing a beat, so you can compare and contrast the four maestri’s interpretations down to the smallest detail in pitch and tempi. You can also listen to real-time commentary from British pianist David Owen Norris, who offers insights into the work as it unfolds. Interviews with conductors like Gustavo Dudamel and musicians of the Berlin Philharmonic provide even more background to Beethoven’s music and a glimpse into classical music-making behind the scenes.

Is this a new idea?

Not exactly. The Orchestra, released...

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