Symphony No. 2 was finished in 1872, but as with many of Bruckner's symphonies it went through various revisions. The revisions for other symphonies of Bruckner can be quite substantial with marked differences, sometimes entire movements are rewritten. The revisions of the 2nd Symphony are many, most of them minor and are of a technical nature. The main difference between the original and the later version heard here are the changing of positions within the symphony of the 2nd and 3rd movements. That is, the Scherzo is now the 3rd movement and the Adagio the 2nd movement. This symphony is sometimes called Symphony of Pauses due to the many full orchestra rests within, which add to the overall form and expressive nature of the work.
The Symphony is in 4 movements:
- Moderato (moderately, not too fast)
- Feierlich, etwas bewegt (solemnly, but a little fast)
- Scherzo: Mäßig schnell - Trio: Gleiches Tempo (somewhat fast - same tempo for trio)
- Finale: Ziemlich schnell (quite fast)