Author Topic: Mahler Symphony No. 6  (Read 2255 times)

0 Members and 1 Guest are viewing this topic.

Offline SymphonicAddict

  • Veteran member
  • *
  • Posts: 1163
Mahler Symphony No. 6
« on: August 17, 2018, 08:29:17 PM »
I don't know many recordings of this work, my favorite Mahler's symphony. So, I'd like to know what is the most cataclysmic performance of it, the wildest and compelling you know. Please, avoid both mono/old and live recordings. I'd really appreciate your suggestions.

Offline Daverz

  • Veteran member
  • *
  • Posts: 4822
  • You can't fool me, it's turtles all the way down!
Re: Mahler Symphony No. 6
« Reply #1 on: August 17, 2018, 08:43:27 PM »
I don't know many recordings of this work, my favorite Mahler's symphony. So, I'd like to know what is the most cataclysmic performance of it, the wildest and compelling you know. Please, avoid both mono/old and live recordings. I'd really appreciate your suggestions.

Well, darn, that eliminates Mitropoulos.



Offline Biffo

  • Full Member
  • *
  • Posts: 761
  • Location: United Kingdom
Re: Mahler Symphony No. 6
« Reply #2 on: August 18, 2018, 12:15:25 AM »
Well, darn, that eliminates Mitropoulos.



Second that, you've eliminated the best ever. That leaves my long time favourite, Kubelik/Bavarian Radio SO (DG).

Offline aligreto

  • Veteran member
  • *
  • Posts: 16386
  • Location: Ireland
Re: Mahler Symphony No. 6
« Reply #3 on: August 18, 2018, 12:48:52 AM »
The old reliables of Bernstein, Kubelik and Solti offer powerful versions if you do not know them but I cannot remember whether or not they are live performances.
The ability to talk comes with knowledge. The ability to listen comes with wisdom.

Offline Draško

  • Full Member
  • *
  • Posts: 556
Re: Mahler Symphony No. 6
« Reply #4 on: August 18, 2018, 01:48:37 AM »
The softest and gentlest is Abbado with Berlin Philharmonic on DG, and I like it.

Offline amw

  • Veteran member
  • *
  • Posts: 3782
Re: Mahler Symphony No. 6
« Reply #5 on: August 18, 2018, 02:33:41 AM »
Hard to go wrong with Kubelík (DG or Audite), Solti or Kondrashin (Melodiya). In general keep an eye out for recordings with timings under 22', 12'30" (Scherzo), 15' (Andante), 28' (Finale)—in particular I'm convinced that there is no speed too fast to be appropriate for the finale's Allegro energico sections.

Offline NikF

  • Veteran member
  • *
  • Posts: 3445
Re: Mahler Symphony No. 6
« Reply #6 on: August 18, 2018, 02:45:04 AM »
Hard to go wrong with Kubelík (DG or Audite), Solti or Kondrashin (Melodiya). In general keep an eye out for recordings with timings under 22', 12'30" (Scherzo), 15' (Andante), 28' (Finale)—in particular I'm convinced that there is no speed too fast to be appropriate for the finale's Allegro energico sections.

I never thought of it that way before. Good stuff.
"You overestimate my power of attraction," he told her. "No, I don't," she replied sharply, "and neither do you".

Offline André

  • Veteran member
  • *
  • Posts: 5689
  • Location: Laval, QC
Re: Mahler Symphony No. 6
« Reply #7 on: August 18, 2018, 03:38:52 AM »
Two widely divergent recordings I cherish are Barbirolli (the EMI disc, not the various live ones) and the Szell on Sony. The most cataclysmic, at least in sonic terms, thanks to a stupendous recording, is Benjamin Zander’s.

Offline Biffo

  • Full Member
  • *
  • Posts: 761
  • Location: United Kingdom
Re: Mahler Symphony No. 6
« Reply #8 on: August 18, 2018, 03:48:18 AM »
Two widely divergent recordings I cherish are Barbirolli (the EMI disc, not the various live ones) and the Szell on Sony. The most cataclysmic, at least in sonic terms, thanks to a stupendous recording, is Benjamin Zander’s.

I would go for Barbirolli's live recording with the Philharmonia but that is a personal choice.The edition of the studio recording I have is split over two discs and has the order Scherzo-Andante so you can't reprogram it to Barbirolli's (and Mahler's) preferred order - if you want to. The Zander set is valuable because it has both versions of the Finale; it also has an extra disc with a discussion of the work by Zander. It is also a fine performance.

Offline Mahlerian

  • Veteran member
  • *
  • Posts: 2967
Re: Mahler Symphony No. 6
« Reply #9 on: August 18, 2018, 06:40:38 AM »
I'm fond of these ones:






My favorite symphony by anyone.  As Schoenberg said, it is a work in which every single detail has ramifications and nothing is superfluous.  I don't particularly like Bernstein's first recording (his DG is better, I think, though really strange), and the Mitropolous, while historically important as the first recording, is captured in mediocre mono sound and cuts the exposition repeat in the first movement, messing up the balance.
« Last Edit: August 18, 2018, 06:58:18 AM by Mahlerian »
"l do not consider my music as atonal, but rather as non-tonal. I feel the unity of all keys. Atonal music by modern composers admits of no key at all, no feeling of any definite center." - Arnold Schoenberg

Offline Archaic Torso of Apollo

  • Veteran member
  • *
  • Posts: 3182
  • Location: Chicagoland
Re: Mahler Symphony No. 6
« Reply #10 on: August 18, 2018, 07:38:14 AM »
The already mentioned Barbirolli is a great recording, but very unconventional - slow tempi, a feeling of dogged, unrelenting struggle. Also, no expo repeat in the first mvt.

I like the second Bernstein (VPO) - feels sort of expressionist (a lot like early Schoenberg et al.). Finale is slow but hugely dramatic. (I think it's "officially" live, but there is no audience noise or orchestral bloopers.) It's much better than his jackrabbit NYPO version, which sounds neurotic or hysteric rather than tragic.

If you want it fast but not hysterical, the Solti/CSO is good.
« Last Edit: August 18, 2018, 07:40:05 AM by Archaic Torso of Apollo »
formerly VELIMIR (before that, Spitvalve)

"Who knows not strict counterpoint, lives and dies an ignoramus" - CPE Bach

Offline SymphonicAddict

  • Veteran member
  • *
  • Posts: 1163
Re: Mahler Symphony No. 6
« Reply #11 on: August 18, 2018, 04:56:51 PM »
Many thanks for the replies. I'm gonna see what ones I can get. More suggestions are welcome.

Offline aukhawk

  • Full Member
  • *
  • Posts: 707
  • Frankie
  • Location: England
  • Currently Listening to:
    Bach to Björk
Re: Mahler Symphony No. 6
« Reply #12 on: August 19, 2018, 12:42:00 AM »
This symphony was the subject of an extended blind listening game a while back.  I link you here to the 'top 5' results (out of 32), three of which have already been mentioned - but if you like this symphony then the whole thread is well worth a read.

http://www.good-music-guide.com/community/index.php?topic=20334.240   Just nobody mention Karajan or we'll never hear the last of it
« Last Edit: August 19, 2018, 12:46:56 AM by aukhawk »

Offline Daverz

  • Veteran member
  • *
  • Posts: 4822
  • You can't fool me, it's turtles all the way down!
Re: Mahler Symphony No. 6
« Reply #13 on: August 19, 2018, 10:15:50 AM »
This symphony was the subject of an extended blind listening game a while back.  I link you here to the 'top 5' results (out of 32), three of which have already been mentioned - but if you like this symphony then the whole thread is well worth a read.

http://www.good-music-guide.com/community/index.php?topic=20334.240   Just nobody mention Karajan or we'll never hear the last of it

I was quite pleased with the Pappano and thought of mentioning it as one of the better ones of recent years, but I don't remember enough to say whether it was "cataclysmic" enough for SymphonyAddict.  However, the Bernstein/VPO certainly fits that bill.

Offline Mahlerian

  • Veteran member
  • *
  • Posts: 2967
Re: Mahler Symphony No. 6
« Reply #14 on: August 19, 2018, 01:39:24 PM »
Just nobody mention Karajan or we'll never hear the last of it

I only participated in that thread because other people asked me to.  For some reason people think I started it.
"l do not consider my music as atonal, but rather as non-tonal. I feel the unity of all keys. Atonal music by modern composers admits of no key at all, no feeling of any definite center." - Arnold Schoenberg

Online geralmar

  • Full Member
  • *
  • Posts: 60
  • Location: Michigan
Re: Mahler Symphony No. 6
« Reply #15 on: August 23, 2018, 09:51:32 AM »
One mild caution about the Barbirolli/EMI recording is the conductor's audible contributions (heavy breathing, grunts) during the quieter passages.  Back in L.P. days I set up a faux quadraphonic speaker system that pulled the vocal effects into the rear speakers which produced the unnerving sense of having a dead man breathing behind me.  Maybe appropriate for the symphony... .

Offline Crudblud

  • Full Member
  • *
  • Posts: 502
  • Location: Multiple Fridge-Freezers
Re: Mahler Symphony No. 6
« Reply #16 on: September 04, 2018, 12:51:12 AM »
I thought I'd posted in this thread already. Well, my favourite recording is the live Eschenbach/Cleveland Orchestra on Ondine.

Offline JBS

  • Full Member
  • *
  • Posts: 541
  • If music be the food of love, play on!
  • Location: USA
Re: Mahler Symphony No. 6
« Reply #17 on: September 04, 2018, 07:33:56 AM »
I thought I'd posted in this thread already. Well, my favourite recording is the live Eschenbach/Cleveland Orchestra on Ondine.

You mean Philadelphia, don't you?


I agree that it is a great performance.


Stranahan House Ft Lauderdale Fl

Offline Crudblud

  • Full Member
  • *
  • Posts: 502
  • Location: Multiple Fridge-Freezers
Re: Mahler Symphony No. 6
« Reply #18 on: September 10, 2018, 06:19:04 AM »
You mean Philadelphia, don't you?


I agree that it is a great performance.
Oh, yes! For some reason I remembered Cleveland and didn't bother to check.

Offline alkan

  • Full Member
  • *
  • Posts: 295
Re: Mahler Symphony No. 6
« Reply #19 on: September 11, 2018, 12:43:44 PM »
Bernstein and the VPO is the most powerful version that I know, especially the finale.     I usually feel exhausted by the end, like I've been sledge-hammered into submission.     The first part of the finale is unbelievable ..... quite slow, but very tense and full of eerie, spine-tingling effects.       The rest is pure emotion, power and excitement.

Solti is also powerful, but his faster speeds make his version seem hysteric and a little artificial to me.   

Bernstein/VPO is the one to get, but consult your doctor and have a check-up before listening ....

The two most common elements in the universe are Hydrogen and stupidity.
Harlan Ellison (1934 - )