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The BBC is giving netizens around the world the chance to enrich their digital music collections by making Beethoven's entire collection of nine symphonies available as free downloads.

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By  Matthew Wade Published  June 14, 2005

The BBC is giving netizens around the world the chance to enrich their digital music collections by making Beethoven's entire collection of nine symphonies available as free downloads. Following hot on the heels of the Beeb’s Radio 3 Beethoven series, which ended last Friday, the complete cycle of the composer's nine symphonies has been being made available for free. All users need is a fast internet connection and a media player program to then listen to the works they have downloaded. The symphonies, which total more than six hours of listening in all, can be downloaded from the BBC's site as individual MP3 audio files. File download sizes range from roughly 30MB-36MB. Performed by the UK’s Manchester-based BBC Philharmonic orchestra, these downloads are being offered in a staggered fashion. Although the download period for Symphonies 1 and 3 has now passed, Symphonies 2, 4 and 5 are still available (until 5:30pm on Tuesday 14th June), with symphonies 6,7,8 and 9 due to be available from June 28th onwards. The BBC’s info-packed Beethoven web page can be found at www.bbc.co.uk/radio3/beethoven. In addition to the relevant download links, this mini-site includes a RealPlayer-based ‘radioplayer’ (with which users can listen to Beethoven's symphonies online), a Beethoven quiz, information on all the composer’s great works, and a ‘Beethoven In-Depth’ section, which offers audio files chronicling the making of the composer's most famous works.

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