Wow, so many to name, and I agree with many you guys have mentioned.
- a few min in, beginning at the end of the pastoral section, the rising figure leading to that briefly quicker syncopated and chromatic statement, then the recession and subsequent harmonic rise to the first glowing major trombone statement where the orchestra arrives at this endless radiant 9th chord...totally awe-inspiring
- The whole 1st mvmt! But especially the bit halfway through where the orchestra arrives at the merry syncopated dance, with the pizz strings and timpani
- Last mvmt, the main dramatic motif
-1st mvmt - especially the latter middle, which seems very influenced by folk melodies
- the very mysterious ominous opening, in the low strings
- the opening motif of the Scherzo, and the way he has lines echo each other among sections throughout
- the finale - the Russian like middle section, and final couple of minutes
-so many spots - but especially the emotional hymnlike middle of the Andante
-the unique long bass pizzicato opening the Andante
-the very opening of the symphony, which always seemed rather Beethovenian 6th to me, and is I think my favorite opening by far of any of his symphonies
-the way he features all sections at certain moments throughout
-of course, the lead up to the end of the 3rd mvmt into the 4th, and then the 2nd arrival, where the strings take the high octave in the last mvmt
-the melodies in the last mvmt, the very, very expressive lines in the strings
- the whole thing?
- okay, but especially the last mvmt, preferably taken with very, very broad tempos, and in the last mvmt..
- absolute favorite moment, maybe in any of his works: the overwhelming modulation at the big statement of the swan theme, that combination of the "swan" line and the woodwinds' soaring lines while the high strings tremelo away on sustained notes
- the romantic, yearning dark theme in the strings in the middle section - and the way he ends that statement in major, the last few notes, to setup the return to the "swan" theme
- the swells at the end of the mvmt, the way you think it has reached the climax but not...quite...and then...it finally does...
- the surprising ending (which threw me for a loop the first time I heard it)
I have to count Kullervo too, since it is often called a symphony..
- in general, the sweeping themes, and strong basis in Finnish folk melodies
- 1st mvmt, change from minor to major/modulation about 5-6 min in
- entrance of the choir! and the way he sets the text
- use of 5/4 meter, and the irregular accents
- the long orchestral interlude in the middle, with the groovy low brass ostinato
- the 4th mvmt - about 3-4 min in, the fanfare calls, first in the low brass, then horns and finally trumpets
- the long dramatic arc of the last mvmt