Author Topic: Mahler Symphony No. 6  (Read 1161 times)

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Offline Ghost of Baron Scarpia

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Re: Mahler Symphony No. 6
« Reply #40 on: September 14, 2018, 08:53:49 AM »
But Abbado made what IMHO is one of the great Mahler recordings of all time:



Just sayin’  ;)

I had that recording at one point. It is not a work that I really love. The one Abbado recording I have which I generally like is his Mahler 5 with the CSO. That was from 1975 or so. In my cynical mind, I think that in those days the orchestras more or less ignored him and played however they wanted. They were probably remembering how Solti told them to do it. It wasn't until later that Abbado really learned how to ruin things. :)

Offline Ghost of Baron Scarpia

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Re: Mahler Symphony No. 6
« Reply #41 on: September 14, 2018, 09:04:28 AM »
His recent live Mahler was quite good, performed consistently well. But I think his real strength was in opera. His Simon Boccanegra is as good as it gets. He's done some fabulous Rossini, Donizetti and Mozart. And his Mussorgsky Khovanshchina was the first good modern version available for this piece (and is still at the top of the heap). I could go on, but this is a Mahler thread. Having said all this, I do not like his studio versions (referring to Mahler again) - the live version on Blu-ray in the years before his death are much to be preferred.

Well, the BPO (among others) hired him, so clearly he was capable. But I have rarely heard a recording by him that resonated with me.

Offline PerfectWagnerite

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Re: Mahler Symphony No. 6
« Reply #42 on: September 14, 2018, 09:28:06 AM »
i think that is the key: resonate is such a subjective term. I think his Mahler in general is a bit characterless as in it sounds just about like every other Mahler recording out there. I rather like his CSO Mahler 7th and his Viennese 3rd is also rather good.

Offline JBS

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Re: Mahler Symphony No. 6
« Reply #43 on: September 14, 2018, 12:24:31 PM »
I find Abbado in Mahler to be sometimes excellent, sometimes horrible, sometimes just mainstream.
I think his Berlin 7th is the best performance of that symphony I have ever heard. But his M2 with Vienna ans again with Lucerne are the worst I have ever heard. His CSO M2 is good.

Offline Josquin13

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Re: Mahler Symphony No. 6
« Reply #44 on: September 14, 2018, 12:30:55 PM »
Taking the old Mitropoulos NYP & F. Charles Adler Mahler 6s off the table (even though Adler was one of Mahler's proteges)--due to sound restrictions (as requested in the opening post), along with the 1991 Tennstedt 6th because it's live, I'd say the finest Mahler 6s I've heard over the decades have been the following 5 or 6 recordings (listed in no particular order)--all of which can be heard on You Tube:

1. Leonard Bernstein: New York Philharmonic--normally, it's a no brainer for me to favor Bernstein's Columbia/Sony recordings over his later DG recordings (esp. the ones he made in Vienna), and while I do prefer his early NYP Mahler 6th over the later Vienna 6th, it's not so clear cut this time, as both are very good.  Indeed, this is one instance where I could safely recommend either recording; although, if pressed, yes, I do find the NYP performance a bit more dynamic and brilliant (it begins at 2:04: 26 on the following You Tube clip): https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ok8wwvduSJo&frags=pl%2Cwn

2. Here's Bernstein's Vienna performance, so you can decide for yourself: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Dex4aQGotps&frags=pl%2Cwn

3. I'd also strongly recommend Leif Segerstam's excellent Mahler 6th, which is one of the finest in the catalogue, IMO (& don't be deterred by the Danish orchestra--as they play remarkably well): https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=nK1Nu5nkKfg&frags=pl%2Cwn.  (Segerstam's Mahler 5th & 9th are excellent too.)

4. Gunther Herbig is another fine, unsung Mahler conductor.  His 5th & 6th are well worth getting to know among his Mahler recordings: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=bL3jY6g1Rf8&list=OLAK5uy_liVPxRzj-jr-lQu5qM5As3f-JSBEHpUP0

5. I'm also a great admirer of Rafael Kubelik, and his DG (& live Audite) Mahler 6th is very fine too (and more driven than the others); however, with that said, Kubelik's DG Mahler needs to be newly remastered, IMO, & it probably will be soon, as it's long overdo (so far, only Kubelik's DG 1st has been remastered since the earliest days of the CD).  Nevertheless, Kubelik's DG 6th sounds perfectly good on You Tube (it may be an LP?--as there was nothing wrong with the original sound of the LPs): https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=8m8cs8umfkI&frags=pl%2Cwn

6. Jascha Horenstein's Stockholm 6th should be heard too (though it is live), as his view of this symphony differs from other conductors: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=rRDZswVLeZA&frags=pl%2Cwn  (There's also a live Horenstein Mahler 6th that was recorded with the Bournemouth S.O., but the sound quality is more of a challenge: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=OY3PX1lCx3U&frags=pl%2Cwn

Finally, I'm normally a fan of Sir John Barbirolli's Mahler (esp. the Mahler song cycles he recorded with Dame Janet Baker--which are desert island discs in my collection), but I don't think the 6th was one of Sir John's best Mahler symphonies.  For one, I find the way he makes the music almost stutter at the opening of the 1st movement a bit odd (as it's different from the way others conduct this movement):

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=fCnZJaRtZSo&frags=pl%2Cwn
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=SzjtaiExMwA&list=PL7BhxaEv8fJOKaopTTYmDlHwO8Q70WWqr

However, if you're looking to collect a variety of different interpretations of the 6th, then Barbirolli's studio (and live) recording does sense (& many listeners are devoted to his Mahler).

Among recordings I've not yet heard, but which are on my wish list, I'd most like to hear Riccardo Chailly's Leipzig Gewandhaus Mahler 6th (on DVD & Blu-ray).  Judging by what I've listened to so far from this cycle (a brilliant Leipzig 9th on You Tube: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=XfaY1wTAtyM&frags=pl%2Cwn), Chailly's Leipzig cycle may be even better than his earlier Concertgebouw cycle.  Indeed, the excerpt from the 6th here does sound better (& good enough to go onto my list of top favorites):

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=t9MbS7Z1Z5o&frags=pl%2Cwn
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=nla-nDaWPuQ&frags=pl%2Cwn

P.S. To conclude, I'd be remiss not to add that Dmitri Mitropoulos's New York Philharmonic 6th is legendary & worth hearing, at least once in your life, even if the sound does put you off: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=5HSvGX2lG94&frags=pl%2Cwn

My two cents.
« Last Edit: September 14, 2018, 01:05:43 PM by Josquin13 »

Offline André

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Re: Mahler Symphony No. 6
« Reply #45 on: September 14, 2018, 02:18:58 PM »
I really like these two:



It is grim and stark, hugely dramatic, with unusual tempo relationships, a bit like a Klemperer performance: energetic but measured in the outer movements, flowing in the middle ones. The RSO Leipzig has a very dark sound.



Very expansive, very lyrical, a rich chocolate palette. The sound is gorgeous.
« Last Edit: September 14, 2018, 04:21:56 PM by André »