GMG Classical Music Forum

The Music Room => Composer Discussion => Topic started by: Greta on May 01, 2007, 07:06:38 PM

Title: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: Greta on May 01, 2007, 07:06:38 PM
2nd try...this thread is to discuss the life and the works of the one-in-a-million composer Gustav Mahler. The original thread turned into an interesting and involved debate about Mahler vs. other composers, and the connections between, and it seemed best to leave that thread for debate and create another one for discussion as I think there's a lot to be gained from both sides.

Please, try to stay on topic - this makes the discussion more useful and pleasant for everyone. Obviously the people in the thread love his music, you'll know if this is the place for you or not. ;) If things start getting too heated or far afield, please take it to the The Great Mahler Debate (http://www.good-music-guide.com/community/index.php/topic,437.280.html).

For discussing recordings of the symphonies I also want to mention this thread:
Mahler Symphonies - Help (http://www.good-music-guide.com/community/index.php/topic,526.0.html)

Thanks in advance!

To start off the discussion, I've been working my way through his works this year and he has steadily risen to one of, or maybe my favorite, composers. My favorite lieder of his so far are Das Lied von der Erde (Song of the Earth) and Lieder eines Fahrenden Gesellen (Songs of a Wayfarer).  My favorite of his symphonies are the 3rd and the 5th, closely followed by the 7th. His 5th was really a pivotal moment in his writing. I'm now going to concentrate on getting to know the 6th and 9th, by golly, if can ever get off the first two I named!

I approached the symphonies in this order, based on perceived difficulty, randomness, and what I had available: 5th, 4th, 8th, 2nd, 7th, 3rd, 10th, 9th, 6th, with lieder sprinkled between. Definitely a lot of connections between his lieder and the symphonies, I'm going to revisit the lieder soon to explore them more.

I'm also currently reading the book Mahler: The Man and His Music by Egon Gartenberg and ordering some of the scores. Fascinating stuff. So much of what's going on in his music is still a vast mystery to me, it seems even the scholars don't know quite what was behind his thought processes at times. ;)

Only now do I realize what a great conductor he was as well. I'm really enjoying reading about that aspect of his life. It's such a shame he didn't live longer, we might've had some recordings of his symphonies with the New York Phil...

Okay, please follow the guidelines, and let the discussion begin anew.

-Greta
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: mahlertitan on May 01, 2007, 07:15:50 PM
Yay! Finally a thread about Mahler.
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: Lethevich on May 01, 2007, 07:39:34 PM
Good plan IMO - thank you for not locking the other thread, as it has become very interesting.
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: Greta on May 01, 2007, 09:30:30 PM
Yay! Finally a thread about Mahler.

And only about Mahler! :)

I had planned to get into the 6th a lot tonight, but I'm sitting here spellbound by a live performance from Vienna of the 5th with Eschenbach and Houston. (From Operashare) How I wished I had been older during his tenure so I could have seen him with them more!

The sound quality and performance are simply incredible. I love this symphony so much. One the BEST openings ever. So startling and dramatic (love the horn trills!) I especially like it when the funeral march is not too fast. Wow, a great performance of this really makes a difference. Previous ones I've heard were Levi/Atlanta, Solti/CSO and Karajan/BPO, but none made the music grab me so much.

His themes are really beautiful here. Those passionate cries full of chromaticism after the opening march, wow, it simply explodes. Truly amazing writing. It's very interesting how he's in minor, and then will suddenly have a fanfare (the one at the end of that first big outburst) end on major chords, like the dark side's devilish false triumph.

I think my favorite movement is the 2nd, there's so much going on, the alternation between the storm and a graceful waltz that progressively becomes more strained until it bursts into a tirade again culminating in those 4 bass drumbeats (you expect a fifth but it comes several measures later). Brilliant. Then back to this ravishing, spiraling dance fluctuating between nostalgic and sinister. Highly romantic music here too. There's some interesting links that start to happen between his middle symphonies. Sometimes I hear things that hint in this symphony to his 7th, and look back to his 4th.

The Scherzo is really fun, so Viennese. I love to see the horn featured and it can be very haunting when played well. I don't have the score yet, those 4 horns that play the same note in succession (5 mins in), is one of more of those stopped? In some recordings the 1st and 3rd notes sound that way.

And of course, the Adagietto is sublime, it seems to breathlessly hover on the edge of another world. One of the most beautiful adagios I can think of. The harp is used so elegantly. In some recordings this movement is interpreted more painfully, but here it floats effortlessly to heaven. I'm thinking I should get a Bernstein recording, as he loved this symphony so much, but I'm wondering how he approached this movement especially. It could easily become sappy and wallowing (and far too slow). For me this one is just right when it walks that very fine line.

The Rondo-Finale is charming, looking fondly back toward his 4th Symphony and ending with that glorious chorale,  that reminds me of Wagner's Tannhauser. It's really an amazing work, there's a lot to study in it.

I wonder if he was thinking of his love for Alma in writing the Adagietto, there seems to be some debate on this among scholars. There is an anecdote I've seen that he wrote it to her as a love letter, with no words, but it's apparently not corroborated in her writings.

Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: stingo on May 02, 2007, 02:30:52 AM
I'd suggest listening to the Ruckert lieder too.
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: Sergeant Rock on May 02, 2007, 02:53:44 AM
It's...it's, so quiet here, so peaceful! Are we sure this is a Mahler thread?
;D

Sarge
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: karlhenning on May 02, 2007, 02:55:30 AM
It's...it's, so quiet here, so peaceful! Are we sure this is a Mahler thread?
;D

Almschi Acres . . . .
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: Harry on May 02, 2007, 04:24:37 AM
It's...it's, so quiet here, so peaceful! Are we sure this is a Mahler thread?
;D

Sarge


She will have some serious talking, my fellow posters. ;D
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: Sergeant Rock on May 02, 2007, 04:56:30 AM

She will have some serious talking, my fellow posters. ;D

I know, I know. I'll have something serious to say soon, I promise.

Sarge
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: karlhenning on May 02, 2007, 04:59:51 AM
Although the two pieces are perfectly distinct 'sound planets' . . . there is a recurring horn-call in the third movement of the Shostakovich Tenth Symphony which recalls the opening of Das Lied von der Erde.

Das Lied von der Erde is one of those rare Mahler works which captivated me completely on the first hearing.
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: Sergeant Rock on May 02, 2007, 10:56:25 AM
Although the two pieces are perfectly distinct 'sound planets' . . . there is a recurring horn-call in the third movement of the Shostakovich Tenth Symphony which recalls the opening of Das Lied von der Erde.

Das Lied von der Erde is one of those rare Mahler works which captivated me completely on the first hearing.

I'm listening to the Tenth now (Karajan) and yes, that horn call does remind me of Das Lied. Interesting.

Sarge
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: Sergeant Rock on May 02, 2007, 11:35:06 AM
And only about Mahler! :)

And of course, the Adagietto is sublime, it seems to breathlessly hover on the edge of another world. One of the most beautiful adagios I can think of.

I couldn't agree more.

The harp is used so elegantly. In some recordings this movement is interpreted more painfully, but here it floats effortlessly to heaven. I'm thinking I should get a Bernstein recording, as he loved this symphony so much, but I'm wondering how he approached this movement especially. It could easily become sappy and wallowing (and far too slow). For me this one is just right when it walks that very fine line.

As a funeral dirge...so you might not appreciate Lenny here. His reading takes 11:13. Me, I can listen to it played at any tempo but my desert island Adagietto is Herman Scherchen's at 13:07. I prefer it played, not as a simple interlude, quickly done away with, but as a major Mahlerian statement of world-weariness and loss.

And only about Mahler! :)
I wonder if he was thinking of his love for Alma in writing the Adagietto, there seems to be some debate on this among scholars. There is an anecdote I've seen that he wrote it to her as a love letter, with no words, but it's apparently not corroborated in her writings.

I doubt the Adagietto was a musical love letter. The Adagietto and the Lieder Ich bin der Welt abhanden gekommen share themes and to my ears express the same feelings. It seems a very strange way to profess love by using a song that says, "I have lost track of the world with which I used to waste much time...I am dead to the world...I live alone in my heaven, in my loving, in my song." Alma would have recognized the origin of the music; would have known the lyrics. I can't imagine her being pleased with the association.

The story didn't come from Mahler or Alma, but from Mengelberg. What really makes me doubt it is the fact Alma never mentioned it. She was an expert at self-promotion and enjoyed being Mahler's muse. Why would she remain silent? I think she would have taken every opportunity to tell anyone who would listen: "You know, my Gustav wrote that for me."

Sarge
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: Greta on May 03, 2007, 01:35:32 AM
Sarge, I listened to the Ruckert-Lieder last night a couple of times through with the text. Indeed the Adagietto shares much in common with "I Have Lost Touch with the World". I also think it is not very likely it was for Alma, though he was deeply in love at the time he was writing and that may have led to its highly expressive and dreamy nature.

That song is my favorite of the Ruckert, quite profound and so beautifully set. Also "At Midnight" I love and "Do Not Look Into My Songs!".  ;D

I going to see if I can roust up some more 5ths this weekend, and mean to take on trying to get to know the 6th. I think his 6th and 7th are the hardest to get to know for me, but they're great. Wild as he**. 3rd was hard too. I spent ages on it (and have the Salonen arriving soon, so will be going back for more).

I have Solti/CSO and Bernstein/VPO to listen to, and a friend had Mackerras with the BBC Phil, didn't even realize he recorded it. Mackerras and Mahler...wow, I'm looking at Google and it looks like he's recorded almost a whole set (http://www.google.com/search?q=mackerras+mahler&hl=en&rls=com.microsoft:en-us:IE-SearchBox&rlz=1I7SNYC&pwst=1&start=10&sa=N), or at least half. I never have heard anything about his Mahler though!  :o

Now tell me...is Zander's 6th really this good? High Fidelity Review (http://www.highfidelityreview.com/reviews/review.asp?reviewnumber=16280004)

Telarc SACD, and with the Philharmonia, stunning I'm sure. Comes with an extra disc of lecture too. Lot of hype around Zander, this reviewer says: "After being swept along by his enthusiasm, you too may begin to wonder if Zander isn’t the next Bernstein." High praise indeed.
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: karlhenning on May 03, 2007, 02:55:11 AM
Oh, praise rather too high, I think.  Ben Zander has his musical virtues, but "the next Bernstein" . . . come, how could he be?
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: Sergeant Rock on May 03, 2007, 05:26:09 AM

Now tell me...is Zander's 6th really this good? High Fidelity Review (http://www.highfidelityreview.com/reviews/review.asp?reviewnumber=16280004)
Telarc SACD, and with the Philharmonia, stunning I'm sure. Comes with an extra disc of lecture too. Lot of hype around Zander, this reviewer says: "After being swept along by his enthusiasm, you too may begin to wonder if Zander isn’t the next Bernstein." High praise indeed.

It simply demolishes all competing recordings of Mahler’s 6th in terms of sonics. In this recording Telarc has captured a sound both red-blooded and gorgeously atmospheric. If the previous Zander/Philharmonia Telarc release on SACD (Mahler’s 5th) was a bit bass-shy, the new recording captures the voice of the orchestra like no other I’ve ever heard, from deep rumbling bass to crystalline highs.--High Fidelity

In particular, the orchestra's weak trombones, tuba, and lower strings fail to give the music the solid bass lines it requires. Page after page of fortissimo writing cries out for greater force and clarity at the lower end of the sonic spectrum... At lower dynamic levels, the sound loses body and texture, and numerous details go missing--Classics Today

Aren't reveiws helpful? ;D

I'm somewhere in the middle: I'm not gaga over it like High Fidelity but I think it deserves a higher rating than Hurwitz gives it. There are some incredibly beautiful things about it. Hurwitz thinks the pastoral section has a glacial pace...I think it's utterly haunting at this speed, maybe the best I've ever heard. The musical pulse almost comes to a complete stop but that suspension of time is magical with the cowbells perfectly placed in the picture. Zander's Andante is nearly as beautiful as Karajan's, and slower than Barbirolli! I usually prefer things on the slow side and for me Zander paces it just right. He really milks it (milks those cows, so to speak ;D ) with lots of expressive molding and rubato. It has tremendous emotional impact Timings for the versions of the Andante that I own:

Karajan       17:10
Zander        16:23
Bernstein     16:16
Bertini         16:16 
Barbirolli      16:03
Solti           15:34
Sanderling   14:53
Boulez        14:47
Chailly        14:40
Szell           13:30
Kubelik        11:35

Zander's Finale is almost as slow as Barbirolli's although it seems to me considerably tamer. There's some interesting details, though, that I don't recall noticing in other versions. It just doesn't have the visceral punch of a Bernstein or Solti though. I appreciate the inclusion of the third hammerblow...and the hammerblows themselves are STUNNING! Best ever...the way I always imagined them. Just beware you don't destroy your speakers...or your ears if you use headphones! The problem is Zander makes nothing of the approach to those first two thrunder cracks; the music just doesn't carry much weight or sense of unstoppable, optimistic momentum the way it should; the blows seem to come out of nowhere, and fit nowhere. The music really takes off after the second one, though, and I enjoyed the ride all the way to the third blow (less powerful than the previous two, just as Mahler requests)

The major disappointment for me is the first movement. It didn't grab me until that central pastoral episode. The fate motive goes for nothing; has no sense of foreboding. And it's this movement especially where I noticed the weak brass that Hurwitz complains about (I'd add backwardly placed horns too) and really, when the miusic gets soft it practically disappears. You need to crank up your system considerably to keep any kind of presence.

I'm glad I own this (especially for that wonderful Andante and some interesting details he unearths) but it doesn't displace my favorite recordings: Solti, Karajan, Szell, Chailly.

Sarge
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: karlhenning on May 03, 2007, 05:28:57 AM
Very interesting, Sarge, thank you!
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: Sergeant Rock on May 03, 2007, 05:37:19 AM
Very interesting, Sarge, thank you!

I revised it somewhat, Karl. You might want to reread the part about the third hammblow.

Sarge
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: Drasko on May 03, 2007, 05:44:33 AM
Timings for the versions of the Andante that I own:

Karajan       17:10
Zander        16:23
Bernstein     16:16
Bertini         16:16 
Barbirolli      16:03
Solti           15:34
Sanderling   14:53
Boulez        14:47
Chailly        14:40
Szell           13:30
Kubelik        11:35

Sinopoli 19:53
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: Sergeant Rock on May 03, 2007, 05:49:55 AM
Sinopoli 19:53

Really?... I've got to hear that.

Sarge
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: karlhenning on May 03, 2007, 05:50:45 AM
Noted, Sarge, thanks!

Sinopoli 19:53

Zowie, Milos!
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: PerfectWagnerite on May 03, 2007, 05:52:59 AM
Really?... I've got to hear that.

Sarge

Sarge, are you sure about the timings for Szell and Kubelik? I don't have the CDs in front of me but I don't seem to remember them being so brisk?
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: Sergeant Rock on May 03, 2007, 06:01:17 AM
Sarge, are you sure about the timings for Szell and Kubelik? I don't have the CDs in front of me but I don't seem to remember them being so brisk?

That's what it says on the covers, PW, and my computer just confirmed Szell at 13:35 with the actual perfomance lasting 13:30 (there are a few seconds filled with audience noise between the end of the Andante and the beginning of the Finale). Kulbelik I can't immediately confirm: I have it on LP. I'll have to spin it on the Thorens and time it with my stopwatch. It does seem unbelievably fast, you're right. But that's the major reason very little of Kubelik's Mahler appeals to me.

Sarge
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: PerfectWagnerite on May 03, 2007, 06:08:54 AM
That's what it says on the covers, PW, and my computer just confirmed Szell at 13:35 with the actual perfomance lasting 13:30 (there are a few seconds filled with audience noise between the end of the Andante and the beginning of the Finale. Kulbelik I can't immediately confirm: I have it on LP. I'll have to spin it on the Thorens and time it with my stopwatch. It does seem incredibly fast, you're right. But that's the major reason very little of Kubelik's Mahler appeals to me.

Sarge

Thanks Sarge. I have the Kubelik set also. It has been a few years since I have listened to it so I don't remember much.
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: Sergeant Rock on May 03, 2007, 06:11:58 AM
Thanks Sarge. I have the Kubelik set also. It has been a few years since I have listened to it so I don't remember much.

I just looked at the LP again: both the Scherzo and the Andante fit on one side! That's fast! ;D

Sarge
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: knight66 on May 03, 2007, 06:20:32 AM
I am pretty staggered by the continuing downpour of Mahler recordings. Clearly it indicates the grip his music has over many of us. I have what I think are quite a lot of Mahler recordings, can I need more? Would I really notice the difference if I had say 20 versions of the 9th symphony? It is one of my favourite pieces bar none. I have four versions and have been tempted into a fifth, but reason prevailed.

In this month's Gramophone there are intimations of the following... without completely scouring the magazine.

An entire cycle by Zinman, Sym no 1 is just available. The new Baremboim 9th. Another 9th Sinopoli, I think never previously issued. A new Mahler 1 Jansons with the Concertgbouw, a new Chicago SO No 3 from Haitink, a reissue of Rattle's Das Lied from EMI. Apart from this we know Boulez is recording the 8th. And so it goes.

Mike
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: karlhenning on May 03, 2007, 06:24:19 AM
Boulez slated to record the Eighth, eh?

Just as long as he doesn't touch Shostakovich, whom he famously derided as "third-pressing Mahler"  ;D
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: Sergeant Rock on May 03, 2007, 06:46:07 AM
I am pretty staggered by the continuing downpour of Mahler recordings. Clearly it indicates the grip his music has over many of us. I have what I think are quite a lot of Mahler recordings, can I need more? Would I really notice the difference if I had say 20 versions of the 9th symphony? It is one of my favourite pieces bar none. I have four versions and have been tempted into a fifth, but reason prevailed.

Verily, the correct number of Mahler recordings of any one symphony needed by any one person is 12. You shall not stop before 12, you shall not commit gross sin by lusting for more than your share. With 13 you needlessly duplicate and waste precious resources. Feed the poor instead.

Thus Spake Sarge

In this month's Gramophone there are intimations of the following... without completely scouring the magazine.

An entire cycle by Zinman, Sym no 1 is just available. The new Baremboim 9th. Another 9th Sinopoli, I think never previously issued. A new Mahler 1 Jansons with the Concertgbouw, a new Chicago SO No 3 from Haitink, a reissue of Rattle's Das Lied from EMI. Apart from this we know Boulez is recording the 8th. And so it goes.

Mike

And two years ago Norman Lebrecht declared the classical recording industry dead ;D

Sarge
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: karlhenning on May 03, 2007, 06:47:18 AM
I declare the Norman Lebrecht publication enterprise dead  0:)
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: Sergeant Rock on May 03, 2007, 06:48:42 AM
I declare the Norman Lebrecht publication enterprise dead  0:)

Where should we hold the funeral?   :D

Sarge
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: knight66 on May 03, 2007, 07:23:11 AM
Mahler may be marching ahead, but the Gramophone had only four opers to review this month, only one of which I had heard of.

I suppose three obscure operas in a month is good in its way, but the entire spectrum of opera is generating less than Mahler by himself, when there are great recordings already of everything he wrote...and there is not exactly an overwhelming amount of work to choose from.

Mike
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: dtwilbanks on May 03, 2007, 07:25:41 AM
Mahler is the new Beethoven.
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: Marc on May 03, 2007, 07:47:19 AM
That's what it says on the covers, PW, and my computer just confirmed Szell at 13:35 with the actual perfomance lasting 13:30 (there are a few seconds filled with audience noise between the end of the Andante and the beginning of the Finale. Kulbelik I can't immediately confirm: I have it on LP. I'll have to spin it on the Thorens and time it with my stopwatch. It does seem incredibly fast, you're right. But that's the major reason very little of Kubelik's Mahler appeals to me.

Mmmm .... maybe I should get Kubelik's complete set then?

Because he's known for his rather brisk tempi.

And I guess he might be right.

(Dare I say this?)

I only know Kubelik's 1st (once heard it, don't 'own' it), 4th and 8th.
The 4th is my favourite symphony, and I like Kubelik's approach very much. The slow movement is taking him around 18 minutes, which is .... way too slow! :o

Nevertheless he's rather quick, compared to many others.

From what I know, Mahler once wrote to Natalie Bauer-Lechner that the entire 4th symphony should last around 45 minutes!
Kubelik's performance lasts 52 minutes, he's (again) rather fast compared to many others.
In his autograph score Mahler has written down the amount of minutes that the movements should last: 15-10-11-8! (At least scholars assume that's what he meant by writing down these figures.)

This would mean, regarding the recordings I know, that lots of conductors take the second movement somewhat too fast (I admit that I've always liked Inbal here, and now that I own the Bertini I also like him :)), and the third movement way too slow. Mahler also told Bauer-Lechner that the third movement should actually be played as a 'Moderato'.

Willem Mengelberg was praised by Mahler, because he played his symphonies exactly the way Mahler wanted to. We know that Mengelberg played the 5th symphony 'Adagietto' very fast and lively, in less than 8 minutes! Also Bruno Walter (who was Mahler's assistent-conductor in Vienna) was known for his rather animated interpretation of this movement. Nowadays a performance in 9 minutes is considered 'fast'.

I think that in Mahler's conception - maybe even in most people's conception during 'his' lifetime - the slow movements were to be played faster than we got used to in 'our' 20th century. It wouldn't surprise me if this goes for a lot of music, from pre-baroque until post-romantics. Since the HIP-revolution a lot of Bach's music, to name but one, is played much faster and brisker.
I sometimes feel that, during the 20th century, a lot of music (particularly slow movements and church music) was copiously dowsed with some (overdone) romantic respectively pious dressing. Romantic or pious, that is to say: the way that people in the 20th century began to think what 'romantic' or 'pious' meant, or should mean.

In this connection I think of some 20th century arrangements of classical 'hits'. During the 20th century listeners got used to very slow tempi for Jesus, joy of man's desiring and Purcell's When I am laid in earth. What great and lovely religious and/or romantic music!

But who believes that the way the Vatican choir nowadays is singing 'their' Renaissance choral works (slow and with an awful lot of vibato) has got anything to do with the way these works were sung in the 16th century?

Or listen, for instance, to Elgar conducting some of his own compositions: from what I've read about it when these recordings were re-issued, the tempi he chose were much faster than most listeners were used to. So some critics said: this can't be right, Elgar was forced to do this because it had to fit on a 78TPM disc.

But is this really true?



BTW: don't get me wrong, I'm really not sure about the rightness of these assumptions. I'm curious what other listeners think. But from the moment I started listening to Mahler, I preferred many slow movements to be played a bit faster, and some of the 'faster' movements a bit slower ;D, like the 'scherzi' of the 4th and 5th symphony.
And I also believe that a good conductor can be convincing, even when chosing the 'wrong' tempo. I like Kuijken's slow but appealing and expressive interpretation of Bach's Johannes-Passion.
I also like Haitink's very slow Adagietto with the Berliner, because it's played in an intense way.

But, to be honest, I prefer Barshai. :)
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: Sergeant Rock on May 03, 2007, 08:57:12 AM
Mmmm .... maybe I should get Kubelik's complete set then?
Because he's known for his rather brisk tempi.
And I guess he might be right.
(Dare I say this?)

Yes, you can and you're right about Mahler's preferred tempos being, in general, much faster than is the norm today. In Henry-Louis de La Grange's Gustave Mahler he cites times clocked by those who heard Mahler and his contemporaries conduct the symphonies. I have no time to list them now (I just dropped in briefly while I wait for the potatoes to finish boiling--I'm primary cook in this house) but I'll be back later to discuss this. I'll just say now that I think Mahler was usually wrong. We know better today ;D

Sarge
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: from the new world on May 03, 2007, 09:02:56 AM
From what I know, Mahler once wrote to Natalie Bauer-Lechner that the entire 4th symphony should last around 45 minutes!
Kubelik's performance lasts 52 minutes, he's (again) rather fast compared to many others.
In his autograph score Mahler has written down the amount of minutes that the movements should last: 15-10-11-8! (At least scholars assume that's what he meant by writing down these figures.)

This would mean, regarding the recordings I know, that lots of conductors take the second movement somewhat too fast (I admit that I've always liked Inbal here, and now that I own the Bertini I also like him :)), and the third movement way too slow. Mahler also told Bauer-Lechner that the third movement should actually be played as a 'Moderato'.

What is interesting to note is that there are many scores, including Shostakovich and the 1960's Mahler critical edition publications, include approximate timings. From memory, I believe that the 1st is 50 min, 2nd is 80 min, 3rd is 95 min, 4th is 50 min, 5th is 65 min, 7th is 80 min, 8th is 90min, 9th is 75 min, 10th is 22 min. All these are shorter than the "average" of today's performances, except for the 8th, where I only know one recording over 90 min, that by Wyn Morris.

As to the 6th, specific movement times are given, there are two sets:
1) 22,12,15,30  2) 23,15,13,31 reflecting the change the change in movement order. I do not know if these numbers were generated at the time, or based on earlier performances. I would doubt that the 15-10-11-8 is correct, not least since it suggests that an adagio/andante is to be played faster than a moderato/allegretto, which is very strange.

I would just point out that specific numbers may well be incorrect, so if anyone has the scores at hand, then the timings can be correctd.
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: Marc on May 03, 2007, 09:36:24 AM
[....] I'll be back later to discuss this. I'll just say now that I think Mahler was usually wrong.

:o ??

;D ;D

That's THE approach! Liked it. Take your time with the argumentation.
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: Marc on May 03, 2007, 10:12:50 AM
I would doubt that the 15-10-11-8 is correct, not least since it suggests that an adagio/andante is to be played faster than a moderato/allegretto, which is very strange.

Well, these are the numbers in Mahler's own handwriting, in his own autographic score. I think that 'Poco adagio' is somewhat confusing. Like he told Natalie Bauer-Lechner: it should be played as a Moderato.

But, as we just heard from Sarge, Mahler was usually wrong in advising the tempos in his own work. ;)

BTW: you're talking about andante/adagio. From what I know, there can be a great difference between Andante (this 3th movement is not an Andante) and Adagio. My school teacher always told me that 'Andante' just meant 'going'. So: not specifically 'slow'. Lots of HIP-performers of 17th and 18th century music have been taken notice of this. Not to everybody's liking, of course. :'(
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: from the new world on May 03, 2007, 10:40:16 AM
BTW: you're talking about andante/adagio. From what I know, there can be a great difference between Andante (this 3th movement is not an Andante) and Adagio. My school teacher always told me that 'Andante' just meant 'going'. So: not specifically 'slow'. Lots of HIP-performers of 17th and 18th century music have been taken notice of this. Not to everybody's liking, of course. :'(

What I mean is that taking into account the allegro sections later on, overall the pace would seem to balance out as nearer what might be termed an andante.
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: Marc on May 03, 2007, 10:58:57 AM
OK.
I just assumed you were trying to indicate that 'andante' and 'adagio' are more or less the same.

Back to G. Mahler, then. A rather popular composer on this forum. :)
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: karlhenning on May 03, 2007, 11:00:24 AM
I just assumed you were trying to indicate that 'andante' and 'adagio' are more or less the same.

Never!  8)
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: mahlertitan on May 03, 2007, 06:50:58 PM
is it me, or do any of you also find the second movement of Mahler's 7th symphony "nachtmusik I" addictive. I probably listened to that single movement hundreds of times, and i still find it fascinating.
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: Marc on May 03, 2007, 10:44:46 PM
is it me, or do any of you also find the second movement of Mahler's 7th symphony "nachtmusik I" addictive. I probably listened to that single movement hundreds of times, and i still find it fascinating.

I totally understand. But I do have my 'own' addictive single Mahler movements. If you do not mind, I'd like to share them with you. ;)

Second symphony: Finale (but 'only' the final chorus: Aufersteh'n, ja, aufersteh'n ..... I still - after all those years of listening - get very emotional at the point where the choir is singing: "Sterben werd' ich um zu leben!")
Fifth symphony: Third movement (Scherzo).
Seventh symphony: First movement.
Tenth symphony: Adagio in F sharp (first movement).

The most addictive symphonies (in total): 4 and 5.
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: Sergeant Rock on May 04, 2007, 03:35:59 AM
The 4th is my favourite symphony, and I like Kubelik's approach very much. The slow movement is taking him around 18 minutes, which is .... way too slow! :o

Nevertheless he's rather quick, compared to many others.

Yes, most performances I know are in the 20 plus range

From what I know, Mahler once wrote to Natalie Bauer-Lechner that the entire 4th symphony should last around 45 minutes!
Kubelik's performance lasts 52 minutes, he's (again) rather fast compared to many others.
In his autograph score Mahler has written down the amount of minutes that the movements should last: 15-10-11-8! (At least scholars assume that's what he meant by writing down these figures.)

Mahler kept revising his scores, including changing the tempos, often after a first performance. The Fourth, for example: the first printed proofs have different tempo indications than the autograph, and again different markings show up in the 1905 edition. Mahler's 1904 performance in Amsterdam had timings of 20-8-19-10. The first movement should be in an almost constant state of flux. Some early critics, comparing Mengelberg and Walter, thought Mengelberg's numerous changes of tempo were what Mahler wanted and Walter's more steady pacing was wrong (they'd probably crucify Boulez for his Fourth  ;D )

I also like Haitink's very slow Adagietto with the Berliner, because it's played in an intense way.
But, to be honest, I prefer Barshai. :)

Barshai: 8:26. Mahler would have approved. In Hamburg his Adagietto was clocked at 9 minutes. His disciples, Walter and Mengelberg, usually finished it off in less than 8, sometimes as fast as 7 minutes (Mengelberg's 1926 recording).

I still prefer it slower but I can happily listen to it at any speed and be seduced into any mood the music wants. Discussing the tempo of the Adagietto on another forum, someone recommended I hear Haitink. I should track that down. Thanks for reminding me. :)

Sarge
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: greg on May 04, 2007, 03:37:18 AM
I totally understand. But I do have my 'own' addictive single Mahler movements. If you do not mind, I'd like to share them with you. ;)

Second symphony: Finale (but 'only' the final chorus: Aufersteh'n, ja, aufersteh'n ..... I still - after all those years of listening - get very emotional at the point where the choir is singing: "Sterben werd' ich um zu leben!")
Fifth symphony: Third movement (Scherzo).
Seventh symphony: First movement.
Tenth symphony: Adagio in F sharp (first movement).
pretty much the same as mine, minus the 3rd from the 5th
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: Sergeant Rock on May 04, 2007, 03:49:42 AM
is it me, or do any of you also find the second movement of Mahler's 7th symphony "nachtmusik I" addictive.

I do. I often listen to it separate from the other movements, or sometimes I'll just play the middle three (that first movement can be exhausting!). Titan, you really should hear what Klemperer does with this: he makes it sound almost like Webern! It's amazing. He makes you understand why Schönberg and company thought so highly of it.

In my youth it was the first movement of the Third I was addicted to. In fact, I didn't even care for the rest of the symphony (the Third was my problem Mahler...took me many, many years to absorb the whole).

Today, besides the Nachtmusik I, I listen to the Andante of the Sixth more than any other single Mahler movement.

Sarge
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: karlhenning on May 04, 2007, 03:59:27 AM
Why, you lads almost convince me to break out a recording of the Mahler Seventh!  :)
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: Sergeant Rock on May 04, 2007, 04:03:05 AM
Why, you lads almost convince me to break out a recording of the Mahler Seventh!  :)

We Mahlerites continue to pray for you, Karl, and we have faith that eventually you'll see the Light and come worship at the altar with us  ;D

Seriously, the Seventh is worth investigating even if you don't end up with any significant appreciation.

Sarge
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: greg on May 04, 2007, 04:03:28 AM
Why, you lads almost convince me to break out a recording of the Mahler Seventh!  :)
oh no way!
Karl's actually gonna do it  :o

for the seventh symphony, the only movement i ever listen to is the 1st, which is just mindblowing, full of Mahlerian activity and energy. The rest are more playful..... give it a listen and send me some thoughts.  8)

Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: greg on May 04, 2007, 04:03:45 AM
We Mahlerites continue to pray for you, Karl, and we have faith that eventually you'll see the Light and come worship at the altar with us  ;D

Seriously, the Seventh is worth investigating even if you don't end up with any significant appreciation.

Sarge
;D
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: karlhenning on May 04, 2007, 04:12:11 AM
(* Gee, I wonder if Borders has the Dover score for the Mahler Seventh . . . . *)
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: Cato on May 04, 2007, 04:16:44 AM
(* Gee, I wonder if Borders has the Dover score for the Mahler Seventh . . . . *)

"Always give in to peer pressure!" - Homer Simpson    ;D

Do it, do it, do it!
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: Sergeant Rock on May 04, 2007, 04:42:47 AM
:o ??

;D ;D

That's THE approach! Liked it. Take your time with the argumentation.

Of course I was joking about Mahler being wrong. But music is an interpretive art and unlike a painter, sculptor or author, a composer needs someone to present his art to the public. The composer knows how he wants his music to go but the rub is, trying to convince the performer to do it his way! It's somewhat analogous to digital media: once you put it out there, make it available to the world, you lose control of it and once a person (in this case a conductor) gets a hold of a score, he thinks he has the right to do anything he wants with it...within certain limiitations and rules. But that's what makes music so interesting: the Mona Lisa is never going to change (you've seen her once, you've seen her) but I've never heard a Mahler symphony performed the same way twice.

I don't know why performances have steadily become slower over the course of the twentieth century, but Mahler isn't the only composer affected (Bruckner too has suffered a steady erosion of speed). From a strictly personal point of view, I'd say it's happened because Mahler's music does sound better when a conductor take more time with it. Contrary to dB's assertion, the music is complex, there's a lot going on, details ARE important and shouldn't be glossed over or rushed by. I'm not unreasonable though; I don't demand slow tempos all the time. I appreciate a wide variety of interpretation; some of my favorite Sixths, for example, are on the fast side (Solti, Szell). Kubelik, though, is obviously nuts ;D

Sarge
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: Greta on May 04, 2007, 05:19:20 AM
I've also been dangerously addicted to the 1st movement of the 3rd. I've forcibly put it on the shelf until the score arrives. But thanks to that I've gotten to know that mvmt really well. It's still my favorite mvmt of that symphony, but the final mvmt is close behind.

Maybe it's just me, but I just hear Shostakovich 5th everytime in that opening. (The rising horns with the full orchestra dum-dum) The 3rd and 5th have openings that just grab you by the throat. I'd give anything to hear those symphonies live!!

So many great things just in that 1st mvmt. of the 3rd. The contrast between the funeral march of the frozen earth and the sweet and boisterous sounds of awakening summer. The light and the dark side. (I like the dark side better!  8)) I love those falling trombone glissandos, especially when they're really nasty! His brass writing is to die for.

There's this one moment that I adore the most: It's after the first long trombone solo, when the whole section comes in, and suddenly goes into this fanfare in a major key that slows down and ends nastily back in the minor key with the full orchestra and a muted trumpet call. (In Chailly 9:14-9:25, and he's got some low-down dirty trombones!)

Then this nationalistic march out of nowhere, which sounds English to my ears. Crazy. And Chailly plays it so cute and mockingly. ;) Such proper stiff-upper lip playing when a few minutes before they were unwashed brutes, I love it.

At around 17 min is that the posthorn solo? It sounds a lot like a euphonium or baritone. I think they're close to the same thing.

Then the circus appears! (With the shrill trilling winds and tamborine and oom-pah accompaniment.) But it's kind of like a broken amusement ride. Especially with the off-kilter snare drum cadence, this part right here is so Ives to me!

And suddenly we're back at the beginning again. Winter tries one more time but her trombone is seized by the haze of summer and ends up swooning in the major key. Leading tones are used to great effect in his themes here.

For the last time, summer marches in from the distance, with great pompous fanfare. And what's this, the trombones have submitted! They take over the melody, joyfully, happily singing a song of summer.

And finally everybody dances around the Maypole, rounding up with a perfectly royal brass chorale and fanfare. (God, the brass players must have their lips falling off by this point.) The ending (the last minute) is so brilliant, another favorite part. Charge!!

And, I wasn't going to listen to the while darn mvmt again! Dang it, Sarge...  ;D

The 7th is best taken a movement at a time, and I do find myself listening to that mvmt often. But like the 3rd, it's also locked away until I get the score! Again, this macabre march weaving in and out of major and minor, like a broken music box. Utterly hypnotic. There's so much I still don't understand about that symphony. Which is why I love it.

*This post has been edited because I had too many emoticons the 1st time around. See what Mahler does to me?! Ach, help!
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: Sergeant Rock on May 04, 2007, 06:05:16 AM
I've also been dangerously addicted to the 1st movement of the 3rd...I'd give anything to hear those symphonies live!!

I enjoy reading your detailed, subjective responses to Mahler. It's great witnessing someone discovering Mahler for the first time. This post, on the Third, was superb, Greta, and expresses closely what I feel about the music.

I've been lucky this year: I heard Chailly, Petra Lang and the Gewandhausorchester Leipzig perform the Third. It was a concert celebrating the anniversary of the new Gewandhaus. It was one of the truly great experiences of my life. Last month we went to Berlin for the Staatskapelle's Mahler Cycle: we heard Boulez in the Eighth and Barenboim conducted the Fifth and Seventh. Oh my...  (You're a member of operashare? Good quality mp3s of the Seventh and Eighth were posted shortly after the concerts.)

I'm leaving shortly to attend a Hilary Hahn recital in Mannheim but I'll comment further when I get back home.

Sarge
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: greg on May 04, 2007, 06:23:58 AM
(* Gee, I wonder if Borders has the Dover score for the Mahler Seventh . . . . *)
unlikely, unless it's a big Borders.... (but still possible)

hey, i want that score too  :'(
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: karlhenning on May 04, 2007, 06:32:04 AM
unlikely, unless it's a big Borders.... (but still possible)

The Borders on School Street, in terms of the Dover scores they carry, is but a shell of its former self.

Neither the School Street nor the Boylston Street store has this 'un.

And of course, the Boston Music Company is long gone . . . .
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: bwv 1080 on May 04, 2007, 06:35:39 AM
The Borders on School Street, in terms of the Dover scores they carry, is but a shell of its former self.

Neither the School Street nor the Boylston Street store has this 'un.

And of course, the Boston Music Company is long gone . . . .

There is always eBay, where I got my Mahler 7 Score
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: Greta on May 04, 2007, 08:25:46 AM
Mine is on its way from Amazon Marketplace for ~$10.

We should have a GMG M7 Listening Party! :D
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: zamyrabyrd on May 04, 2007, 09:11:47 AM
I doubt the Adagietto was a musical love letter. The Adagietto and the Lieder Ich bin der Welt abhanden gekommen share themes and to my ears express the same feelings. It seems a very strange way to profess love by using a song that says, "I have lost track of the world with which I used to waste much time...I am dead to the world...I live alone in my heaven, in my loving, in my song."...Sarge

Yes, indeed! I'm SO glad you mentioned this. And it's in the same key of F. You have the same notes even, C, D, F and A. Now for yet ANOTHER connection to the Lied von der Erde the same A to middle C oscillation that Lenny mentioned in the Norton lectures on the Adagietto (see below link*) opens that movement. I think it may be harp as well in the Lied. There seems to be quite a bit of motivic interlinking in his works. Maybe someone should do a study, or perhaps it has already been done...

*http://www.good-music-guide.com/community/index.php/topic,437.msg11979.html#msg11979
Zb
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: zamyrabyrd on May 04, 2007, 09:18:47 AM

His themes are really beautiful here. Those passionate cries full of chromaticism after the opening march, wow, it simply explodes. Truly amazing writing. It's very interesting how he's in minor, and then will suddenly have a fanfare (the one at the end of that first big outburst) end on major chords, like the dark side's devilish false triumph.


Hi Greta,
I also pulled out a recording of the 5th with Mehta and the New York Phil and thought more or less the same thing about the major chords in the first movement. Somehow they are all the more bitter than the minor would be in their place. Those first few bars are amazing and need an absolutely fearless leader to call on the orchestra to "follow me". Fortunately, in this recording the trumpeter was more than up to standard.

Zb
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: Steve on May 04, 2007, 10:46:49 AM
Mine is on its way from Amazon Marketplace for ~$10.

We should have a GMG M7 Listening Party! :D

My, now that's an idea.  :)
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: Marc on May 04, 2007, 01:26:59 PM
I doubt the Adagietto was a musical love letter. The Adagietto and the Lieder Ich bin der Welt abhanden gekommen share themes and to my ears express the same feelings. It seems a very strange way to profess love by using a song that says, "I have lost track of the world with which I used to waste much time...I am dead to the world...I live alone in my heaven, in my loving, in my song."

I must admit it doesn't seem strange to me. To me, it's pure love poetry. Getting rid of the awful world and being sunk into your own imagination of heaven, with the persons and music you so deeply love.
Of course this is a sort of love that is closely related to a longing for death: when you're dead, all the earthly pains will disappear, and you will be reunited in heaven with the persons you loved and who have departed before you.

Sterben werd' ich um zu leben, nicht wahr?

These are exactly the feelings that come over me a lot of times when listening to Mahler, and then I get hovered between faith/comfort and restlessness. That's why his music touches me. Mahler's music is very close to life, IMHO, because generally it delivers more questions than answers.
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: Steve on May 04, 2007, 06:57:31 PM
I must admit it doesn't seem strange to me. To me, it's pure love poetry. Getting rid of the awful world and being sunk into your own imagination of heaven, with the persons and music you so deeply love.
Of course this is a sort of love that is closely related to a longing for death: when you're dead, all the earthly pains will disappear, and you will be reunited in heaven with the persons you loved and who have departed before you.

Sterben werd' ich um zu leben, nicht wahr?

These are exactly the feelings that come over me a lot of times when listening to Mahler, and then I get hovered between faith/comfort and restlessness. That's why his music touches me. Mahler's music is very close to life, IMHO, because generally it delivers more questions than answers.

Well said, Marc. Spoken like a true Mahlerite. Sometimes simply finding the adequate diction to summarize one's experience with this music can be incredibly difficult. Ultimately, I'm often left with the cliche of a portrait of human nature or of reality. Something fresh with each listen.
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: Sergeant Rock on May 05, 2007, 01:45:58 AM
I must admit it doesn't seem strange to me. To me, it's pure love poetry. Getting rid of the awful world and being sunk into your own imagination of heaven, with the persons and music you so deeply love.
Of course this is a sort of love that is closely related to a longing for death: when you're dead, all the earthly pains will disappear, and you will be reunited in heaven with the persons you loved and who have departed before you.

Sterben werd' ich um zu leben, nicht wahr?

Well, that Teutonic Romantic notion has always bothered me; I prefer, Leben werd' ich um zu Sterben. :)

But anyway, the last lines of the Rückert song are specific that he's living alone in his heaven; there is no hope of reuniting with a beloved; it's over, he's done with the world (and the world includes his beloved). The love he's now experiencing, it seems to me, is a lost love, and his feelings are akin to nostalgia, his songs celebrating the dead past:

Ich leb' allein in meinem Himmel,
In meinem Lieben, in meinem Lied!

(This reminds me of Simon and Garfunkel's song, I Am a Rock:

I have my books
And my poetry to protect me;
I am shielded in my armor,
Hiding in my room, safe within my womb.
I touch no one and no one touches me.
I am a rock,
I am an island.)


The cycle continues in that forlorn vein with the last song, Um Mitternacht, making it clear that there is no hope, no light, only darkness; no sign of a beloved to light up his life.


Es hat kein Lichtgedanken
Mir Trost gebracht
Um Mitternacht.


Since I believe the Rückertlieder and the Adagietto are related not only by specific musical themes but by a dark pessimism and sense of loss, I'll remain skeptical that Mahler conceived this as a love song. Of course your interpretation is perfectly valid too. I can see your point and you may be right: the one troubling snag with my theory: why would Mengelberg make up the story?

In the end, though, we bring ourselves to art: we see, hear and interpret through the filters of our individual experiences and beliefs. Ain't it grand we have so many performances to choose from? We can all find a conductor who gives a performance to fit our personality

Quote
These are exactly the feelings that come over me a lot of times when listening to Mahler, and then I get hovered between faith/comfort and restlessness. That's why his music touches me. Mahler's music is very close to life, IMHO, because generally it delivers more questions than answers.

Well said, and true.

Sarge
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: Marc on May 05, 2007, 02:34:50 AM
Well, that Teutonic Romantic notion has always bothered me; I prefer, Leben werd' ich um zu Sterben. :)

Good for you! :D

Quote from: Sergeant Rock
But anyway, the last lines of the Rückert song is specific that he's living alone in his heaven; there is no hope of reuniting with a beloved; it's over, he's done with the world (and the world includes his beloved). The love he's now experiencing, it seems to me, is a lost love, and his feelings are akin to nostalgia, his songs celebrating the dead past [....]

You certainly do have a point there. Maybe I was a bit too enthousiastic, and therefore too hasty, with my 'interpretation'.
But I'm still not sure that the narrator meant this poem to be 'sad' (and it can still be a love song; maybe not in the average meaning, but more as a comfort for the narrator himself). The fact that Um Mitternacht is comfortless might also lead to the conclusion that eventually the narrator has found a way to deal with his earthly pain in the way he describes in Ich bin der Welt abhanden gekommen.
And of course, there is some kind of a problem with 'love': is it really possible to experience it as a combined fusion, both lovers in the same intense way? Or is it in many cases 'allein Lieben', exceptions excluded? Is longing, on your own, and by your own, sometimes more satisfying than being able to really love that other person? Are we really able to love our beloved?
Wasn't this maybe the case with Mahler and Alma? Was he able to love her in the 'average' way? Didn't he want to love her in his 'own way'? Was this to be said in the 'Adagietto', like a kind of very personal love song?
Mahler and Mengelberg became close friends when Mahler visited the Netherlands. Maybe he discussed his feelings for Alma with Mengelberg and others? Like he did with Freud, in Leiden?

Für dich leben! Für dich sterben .... Almschi!

Tenth symphony: a love song??

How many of us are able to really feel this way for another human being?
Alma was much younger than Mahler; somehow I get the feeling that their interpretations of 'real love' were not the same. So she tried her 'luck' with others, like Gropius.
Maybe Mahler could foresee this in an earlier stage? Maybe he was already amazed by the fact that this 'most wanted woman in Vienna and widely spread neighbourhood' fell in love with him. Could he really believe it?

Errr .... is this the right forum for this? What am I discussing?
Mahler's music? Rückert's poetry? Music and poetry in my own personal experience? Mahler's personality, or Rückert's, or Alma's, .... or mine?

Should I post this? ;)

Ich leb' allein in meinem Himmel,
In meinem Lieben, in meinem Lied!


Beautiful verses!
Beautiful music!
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: Greta on May 05, 2007, 02:56:40 AM
I enjoy reading your detailed, subjective responses to Mahler. It's great witnessing someone discovering Mahler for the first time. This post, on the Third, was superb, Greta, and expresses closely what I feel about the music.

Thanks for the compliment, Sarge. Deeply appreciated. I'm trying to improve on writing about music, so this means a lot! I usually just write as the music is playing, so it's pretty much stream-of-consciousness rambling. I find I have to hear a work by Mahler at least 5 times to really be able to speak coherently about it! :D

About the M5 Adagietto:
Quote
...So you might not appreciate Lenny here. His reading takes 11:13. Me, I can listen to it played at any tempo but my desert island Adagietto is Herman Scherchen's at 13:07. I prefer it played, not as a simple interlude, quickly done away with, but as a major Mahlerian statement of world-weariness and loss.

Well, I looked at the timings on the 5ths I have so far, and listened to several Adagiettos - and guess what, I do too. Eschenbach comes in at a surprising 12:19. He didn't seem quite as slow as Karajan, but he has almost half a minute on him. Eschenbach does it so beautifully and earnestly, the sense of time is somehow suspended.

Here's a line-up of timings of what I have plus the info from Sarge:

13:07 Scherchen/?
12:19 Eschenbach/Houston
11:53 Karajan/Berlin
11:13 Bernstein/?
11:06 Levi/Atlanta
10:37 Haitink/RCO
10:06 Bertini/Cologne
9:51 Solti/CSO
9:32 Rattle/CBSO

I hadn't gotten through Rattle's M5 yet, but I had to put it on and see how he managed to get out in almost 9 1/2 min. It's lovely actually, played with a lot of earnest feeling, but it's more dramatic and romantic, a bit like a Hollywood film score, it doesn't "hover" at all. He does make his case, milking the recap for all its worth. Though the CBSO doesn't sound as good here as on some of their other recordings.

On the faster side, Bertini works the best for me, I haven't even heard the rest of his M5 yet, but he sees to all the details and it's also incredibly sincere. I like the way he points up the lyrical melodic line.

Though it's in any form a transcendant piece, Haitink worked less well for me, being so cool and pristine. Also Solti had to win me over, as the most romantic, but his forces play like soloists and he's searching and passionate.

I still do prefer mine slow, and would love to hear the Scherchen. Eschenbach and Karajan are about tied for my favs, not just for the Adagietto but favorite M5 all around. Their Adagiettos are really quite similar in interpretation, with Eschenbach less on the loud dynamic and a bit more gossamer.

Since I raved about his M5, here's the links -

http://rapidshare.com/files/27930208/Mahler_Sym_5_Houston_SO_Eschenbach.zip.001
http://rapidshare.com/files/27935524/Mahler_Sym_5_Houston_SO_Eschenbach.zip.002
http://rapidshare.com/files/27937035/Mahler_Sym_5_Houston_SO_Eschenbach.zip.003

Timings:
Trauermarsch 13:32
Sturmisch 26:38
Scherzo 19:44
Adagietto 12:19
Finale 15:16

This isn't a radio broadcast but a private label live recording so the quality is excellent, well mixed with a large dynamic range. I had heard great things about this recording but thought it had disappeared into the netherworld, it's not available anymore.

It was recorded Dec. 7, 1992 from the Musikverein in Vienna when Eschenbach took Houston on a successful European tour. This is a wonderful document of their partnership, it's too bad he didn't record more Mahler while here. His (also live) Houston M1 on Koch made this recommended recordings list (http://www.geocities.com/Vienna/Choir/6196/Pages/RECORDINGS.html).

He's indeed a very fine Mahlerian and this M5 shows that. His phrases are carefully crafted with so much attention to detail, he has a clear idea of where he's going and leaves room to get there.

The playing is very fine, sensitive and precise, I'd say possibly the best Houston ever sounded, the connection with their conductor evident. The sections are properly balanced and each very clear, an attribute that has suffered since he left. He could have stayed here these last ten years and never had the Philly interlude, and, that would have likely been better for everyone all around. ;)

His Sturmisch bewegt, really shines, ultra lyrical and romantic, but never maudlin, tossing and tumbling you with the crest of each musical wave. Propulsively builds to a blazing climax and then slowly brings it down.

The Scherzo is light and frisky with the fugal elements and echoes played up nicely. Only one minor criticism for this M5, and that's the fact that his intensity flags somewhat in the chamber music sections following the mandolin solos.   

But at the heart is his Adagietto, a tender prayer enveloped in a soft haze, clearly he has a deep connection to Mahler's music. For me, his Mahler tells a story. After seeing the "A Wayfarer's Journey" PBS special I wonder if Eschenbach might've been thinking here back to his difficult childhood (orphaned in WWII) and love for his foster mother, I think those experiences perhaps color his Mahler, for the better.

In any case, he has some powerful things to say, if he ever finds the right partner to dance with again. I would love to hear his Philly 6th, now that I'm trying to move on to that symphony, it's looking like a must-purchase now.

I did actually listen to the 6th all the way through again last night, the live Mackerras with the BBC Phil (which was included in a BBC Music magazine I believe). Like you'd expect from Mackerras, it's very good music-making, sparkling, vivacious, wonderfully weird and spiky where needed, the BBCPO is superb. Features an Andante-Scherzo (not my fav but his works, a particularly fine Scherzo) and 3 very impressive hammerblows - he takes 29:24 for the Finale, and places them at 12:24, 16:44, and 26:43 respectively. I really like where he puts the 3rd, you're waiting and expecting it right on the big major chord after the gong, but he waits until after the wandering violin melody and BAM, puts it on that big minor chord crash. Fantastic.

I'm really looking forward to getting into the 6th, I think it's going to be the hardest for me so far. The 6th and 7th are both wild!  :o Okay, /end on the Mahler gush for today. It's crazy, I think I'm at 80% Mahler and 20% everyone else this week for listening. Hopefully this is just a temporary phase. ;) But there's so much Mahler, I'm having a blast...


Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: Drasko on May 05, 2007, 03:53:02 AM
13:07 Scherchen/?
12:19 Eschenbach/Houston
11:53 Karajan/Berlin
11:13 Bernstein/?
11:06 Levi/Atlanta
10:37 Haitink/RCO
10:06 Bertini/Cologne
9:51 Solti/CSO
9:32 Rattle/CBSO

Walter/NYPO  7:38

Scherchen/Philadelphia 15:12

http://www.andante.com/article/piece.cfm?iConcPieceID=39 (http://www.andante.com/article/piece.cfm?iConcPieceID=39)

http://www.andante.com/article/article.cfm?id=16577&highlight=1&highlightterms=&lstKeywords= (http://www.andante.com/article/article.cfm?id=16577&highlight=1&highlightterms=&lstKeywords=)
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: greg on May 05, 2007, 04:01:52 AM
The Borders on School Street, in terms of the Dover scores they carry, is but a shell of its former self.

Neither the School Street nor the Boylston Street store has this 'un.

And of course, the Boston Music Company is long gone . . . .
yep, sad stuff.......
i've went to some bookstores, like the closest mall to this place where I'm living now, and they don't have one single orchestral score, just guitar music and popular piano music  :(
it's like they don't even acknowledge the existence of the music i like

the Borders from before had a pretty good selection, a couple of rows on a shelf that included The Rite of Spring, The Planets, other decent stuff.
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: MishaK on May 05, 2007, 04:14:18 AM
13:07 Scherchen/?
12:19 Eschenbach/Houston
11:53 Karajan/Berlin
11:13 Bernstein/?
11:06 Levi/Atlanta
10:37 Haitink/RCO
10:06 Bertini/Cologne
9:51 Solti/CSO
9:32 Rattle/CBSO

A few more:

Walter/NYPO: 7:43
Solti/CSO 1970: 9:51
Solti/CSO/1990: 9:42
Kubelik/BRSO: 9:44
Abbado/CSO: 11:55
Barenboim/CSO: 9:45
Barshai/JDP: 8:17
Chailly/RCO: 10:16
Kletzki/PO: 9:57

Of course, timings alone don't tell you how convincing the interpretation is.
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: Greta on May 05, 2007, 04:29:11 AM
Quote
Walter/NYPO  7:38

Scherchen/Philadelphia 15:12

 :o  Wow at both of those, and Walter is supposed to be a great Mahler interpreter, I'll have to seek him out.

I'd be more inclined to think that a successful 15 min. Adagietto would be tougher to pull off...
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: zamyrabyrd on May 05, 2007, 04:58:32 AM

Of course, timings alone don't tell you how convincing the interpretation is.

Add to the list Mehta/NYP 10:50 somewhere in the middle, just right for me. As the obsessive organizer, I put everything in order so far, the last astonishingly twice as fast as the first. Looks like the 9's have it.

Walter/NYPO: 7:43
Barshai/JDP: 8:17
Rattle/CBSO: 9:32
Solti/CSO/1990: 9:42
Barenboim/CSO: 9:45
Kubelik/BRSO: 9:44
Solti/CSO 1970: 9:51
Kletzki/PO: 9:57
Bertini/Cologne: 10:06
Chailly/RCO: 10:16
Haitink/RCO: 10:37
Mehta/NYP 10:50 
Levi/Atlanta: 11:06
Bernstein/?: 11:13
Karajan/Berlin: 11:53
Abbado/CSO: 11:55
Eschenbach/Houston: 12:19
Scherchen/Philadelphia: 15:12

Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: Sergeant Rock on May 05, 2007, 05:21:41 AM
Add to the list Mehta/NYP 10:50 somewhere in the middle, just right for me. As the obsessive organizer, I put everything in order so far, the last astonishingly twice as fast as the first. Looks like the 9's have it.

I added Maazel, Sinopoli, Neumann, Barbirolli, Levine and noted the Scherchen I have is with the ORTF (this is the infamous Fifth with the major cut in the Scherzo):

Walter/NYPO: 7:43
Barshai/JDP: 8:17
Rattle/CBSO: 9:32
Neumann/Gewand Leipzig: 9:40
Solti/CSO/1990: 9:42
Kubelik/BRSO: 9:44
Barenboim/CSO: 9:45
Solti/CSO 1970: 9:51
Barbirolli/New Philh: 9:52
Kletzki/PO: 9:57
Bertini/Cologne: 10:06
Chailly/RCO: 10:16
Sinopoli/Philh: 10:28
Maazel/Vienna: 10:33
Haitink/RCO: 10:37
Mehta/NYP 10:50 
Levi/Atlanta: 11:06
Bernstein/Vienna: 11:13
Karajan/Berlin: 11:53
Abbado/CSO: 11:55
Levine/Philadelphia: 12:03
Eschenbach/Houston: 12:19
Scherchen/ORTF: 13:07
Scherchen/Philadelphia: 15:12


Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: karlhenning on May 05, 2007, 05:26:17 AM
Scherchen did that, Sarge?  That surprises me.
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: Sergeant Rock on May 05, 2007, 05:34:37 AM
Scherchen did that, Sarge?  That surprises me.

I believe it was a case of French radio needing to fit the symphony into a short time slot. Still, I'm shocked he agreed to do it. Consider that the Scherzo is the heart of the symphony and normally lasts longer than any other movement...to whittle it down from 16-18 minutes to five is desecration, pure and simple.

Sarge
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: Steve on May 05, 2007, 05:36:22 AM
My, I didn't realize the Abbado was so slow. Come to think of it, it looks like all of my 5ths are on the bottom of that list.
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: karlhenning on May 05, 2007, 05:40:24 AM
I believe it was a case of French radio needing to fit the symphony into a short time slot. Still, I'm shocked he agreed to do it. Consider that the Scherzo is the heart of the symphony and normally lasts longer than any other movement...to whittle it down from 16-18 minutes to five is desecration, pure and simple.

Desecration? Arrant butchery!  (And I say this in defense of Mahler!)
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: Sergeant Rock on May 05, 2007, 05:45:44 AM
Desecration? Arrant butchery!  (And I say this in defense of Mahler!)

I understand. Composers must stick together to fend off the philistines and barbarians!

Sarge
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: Drasko on May 05, 2007, 05:45:56 AM
I believe it was a case of French radio needing to fit the symphony into a short time slot. Still, I'm shocked he agreed to do it. Consider that the Scherzo is the heart of the symphony and normally lasts longer than any other movement...to whittle it down from 16-18 minutes to five is desecration, pure and simple.

Sarge

He did the same in Philadelphia, I believe to fit under hour radio slot. His commercial recording is uncut (and has, perhaps surprisingly, 9:15 Adagietto)

http://www.tagtuner.com/music/albums/Hermann-Scherchen,-VSOO/Mahler-5/album-v21ca327  (http://www.tagtuner.com/music/albums/Hermann-Scherchen,-VSOO/Mahler-5/album-v21ca327)  
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: Sergeant Rock on May 05, 2007, 05:56:20 AM
My, I didn't realize the Abbado was so slow. Come to think of it, it looks like all of my 5ths are on the bottom of that list.

You should consider adding Barshai to your collection of Fifths then. It's a first choice for many and has several things going for it: a swift Adagietto that Mahler would have approved; an intense, and intensely slow Scherzo (18:29), giving it proper weight and pride of place in this symphony; and played by a group of young people just bursting with energy and obviously dedicated to both Mahler and Barshai. It just misses my top rating because he underplays (to my ears) the chorale apotheosis in the second and last movements. I really want to hear a conductor pull in the reins here, stretch it out almost to the breaking point. Karajan, and surprisingly Neumann, give me what I want.

Sarge
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: Sergeant Rock on May 05, 2007, 06:00:26 AM
He did the same in Philadelphia, I believe to fit under hour radio slot. His commercial recording is uncut (and has, perhaps surprisingly, 9:15 Adagietto)

That is odd. Have you heard any explanation why he'd be so slow in Philly and Paris, but so fast in Vienna?

Sarge
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: Steve on May 05, 2007, 06:01:37 AM
That is odd. Have you heard any explanation why he'd be so slow in Philly and Paris, but so fast in Vienna?

Sarge

I smell a quandry!  ;D
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: Drasko on May 05, 2007, 06:04:44 AM
That is odd. Have you heard any explanation why he'd be so slow in Philly and Paris, but so fast in Vienna?

He was odd.
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: Sergeant Rock on May 05, 2007, 06:08:15 AM
He was odd.

 ;D :D ;D

Aren't we all  ;D

Sarge
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: not edward on May 05, 2007, 06:13:56 AM
A random question which may well fit nicely here: Has anyone heard Zender's Mahler 7? I've a feeling he'd do a really job with this piece (composer's perspective and all).
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: Steve on May 05, 2007, 07:32:03 AM
A random question which may well fit nicely here: Has anyone heard Zender's Mahler 7? I've a feeling he'd do a really job with this piece (composer's perspective and all).

Its a marvelous 7th. Ideal tempi transitions, good sound, and just the right amount of energy. Easy rec.
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: Drasko on May 05, 2007, 07:51:10 AM
Its a marvelous 7th. Ideal tempi transitions, good sound, and just the right amount of energy. Easy rec.

That is all very lovely but where to find the bloody thing. I've been wanting to hear it for years and never could track down a copy.
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: from the new world on May 05, 2007, 10:13:20 AM
I added Maazel, Sinopoli, Neumann, Barbirolli, Levine and noted the Scherchen I have is with the ORTF (this is the infamous Fifth with the major cut in the Scherzo):

Walter/NYPO: 7:43
Barshai/JDP: 8:17
Rattle/CBSO: 9:32
Neumann/Gewand Leipzig: 9:40
Solti/CSO/1990: 9:42
Kubelik/BRSO: 9:44
Barenboim/CSO: 9:45
Solti/CSO 1970: 9:51
Barbirolli/New Philh: 9:52
Kletzki/PO: 9:57
Bertini/Cologne: 10:06
Chailly/RCO: 10:16
Sinopoli/Philh: 10:28
Maazel/Vienna: 10:33
Haitink/RCO: 10:37
Mehta/NYP 10:50 
Levi/Atlanta: 11:06
Bernstein/Vienna: 11:13
Karajan/Berlin: 11:53
Abbado/CSO: 11:55
Levine/Philadelphia: 12:03
Eschenbach/Houston: 12:19
Scherchen/ORTF: 13:07
Scherchen/Philadelphia: 15:12

I would just have to add two further recordings, Haitink/BPO: 13:55, and Cobra/ Europa Philharmonia: 16:48 (adagietto only)
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: Sergeant Rock on May 05, 2007, 11:05:51 AM
I would just have to add two further recordings, Haitink/BPO: 13:55, and Cobra/ Europa Philharmonia: 16:48 (adagietto only)


Thanks, I was hoping someone would add the timing for Haitink/Berlin.

Sarge

Edit: Maxiamanno Cobra's version can be downloaded here:

http://www.hodie-world.com/listenmahler_v.html

Go to the bottom of the page and right click the speaker symbol. It's a small file (less than 4mb), low quality (sounds synthetic in parts) but you'll get the idea.

Sarge
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: Sergeant Rock on May 05, 2007, 12:22:40 PM

You certainly do have a point there. Maybe I was a bit too enthousiastic, and therefore too hasty, with my 'interpretation'....

Should I post this? ;)

Ich leb' allein in meinem Himmel,
In meinem Lieben, in meinem Lied!


Beautiful verses!
Beautiful music!

I'm not ignoring you, Marc. I'm still digesting your post and will reply eventually.

Sarge
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: Greta on May 05, 2007, 02:50:49 PM
Quote
I would just have to add two further recordings, Haitink/BPO: 13:55, and Cobra/ Europa Philharmonia: 16:48 (adagietto only)

Big difference between the two Haitinks, interesting. Does anyone have Lenny's times besides with Vienna?
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: Sergeant Rock on May 07, 2007, 02:28:14 PM
Big difference between the two Haitinks, interesting. Does anyone have Lenny's times besides with Vienna?

11:05, with the New York Phil on Sony

Sarge
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: MishaK on May 08, 2007, 07:33:58 AM
Frankly, I don't think overall tempo matters much. If you compare the three major Mahler disciples who performed his music in his presence or under his tutelage - i.e. Mengelberg, Walter, Klemperer - you realize that even among these firsthand witnesses there is no consensus at all. They differ so widely in their approach to the music that you can't really speak of a single "correct" approach that Mahler would have "approved" of.
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: sperlsco on May 08, 2007, 08:31:55 AM
I really like where he puts the 3rd, you're waiting and expecting it right on the big major chord after the gong, but he waits until after the wandering violin melody and BAM, puts it on that big minor chord crash. Fantastic.

Yes, that is where the third hammerblow should be located (i.e. if it is indeed being reinsterted).  The hero thinks that he has escaped the blow since it does not happen where it did previously... and then BAM.  I think that the Makerras is a fabulous M6.  I actually re-burned the CD in Scherzo-Andante order, since that is my preference.  I also love swift Andante movements like this one, which IIRC clocks in around 14'. 

I also whole-heartedly agree with your accolades for the Eschenbach M5.  I live in Houston but am ashamed that I missed out on the Eschenbach years (although we are very fortunate to have Hans Graf these days).  His M6 with Philly is a big favorite of mine. 

It's interesting reading all of Sarge's comments.  He and I have totally different preferences for Mahler slow movements -- I prefer these all be played more swiftly M2-2, M3-2, M3-6, M4-3, M4-4, M5-4, M6-A, M7-4, M10-1, M10-5 (but not M9 BTW).  However, like Sarge I can get plenty of enjoyment from these played at just about ANY tempo. 

Scott
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: stingo on May 08, 2007, 09:09:00 AM
I also whole-heartedly agree with your accolades for the Eschenbach M5.  I live in Houston but am ashamed that I missed out on the Eschenbach years (although we are very fortunate to have Hans Graf these days).  His M6 with Philly is a big favorite of mine. 

The chamber movement on that CD is great too.
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: Sergeant Rock on May 08, 2007, 02:04:21 PM
It's interesting reading all of Sarge's comments....I prefer these all be played more swiftly...M4-4

I'm old...old farts like to take things slow. ;D

Seriously, I urge anyone who loves the Fourth (even those who want to get the Finale over with as quickly as possible  ;) ) to hear Maazel and Battle and Vienna. I don't believe there is a slower finale but it seems to me just perfect: heaven is about eternity; there's no need to rush. :)

I'll never understand why this isn't at the top of everyone's list, but anyway...I was checking Gramophone today because I was considering buying Haitink's Berlin Fifth (with that extremely slow Adagietto). It comes coupled with his Berlin Fourth. Here's what the reviewer said comparing it to Maazel:

"Unfortunately, there is little of that indefinable quality of radiance which has made Lorin Maazel's second recording such a firm favourite. Even more than Haitink, Maazel will have 'intellectualized' his interpretative options. The results are very different. Dawdling over phrase-ends and daringly slow, he is helped by Kathleen Battle's detailed characterization to project a lighter, more genuinely childlike vision, especially moving in the closing stages where the limpid playing of the VPO really comes into its own."

This movement, played and sung this way, is one of the most beautiful things I've ever heard. It just might convince you, Scott, that slower sometimes is better...or not  :)

Sarge
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: PaulR on May 08, 2007, 02:14:06 PM
Forgive me if this is the wrong place to ask.

But next semester, I am playing Mahler 4 in school, so I was wondering what good recordings of it I should look for.  Thanks :)
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: Sergeant Rock on May 08, 2007, 02:16:20 PM
Frankly, I don't think overall tempo matters much. If you compare the three major Mahler disciples who performed his music in his presence or under his tutelage - i.e. Mengelberg, Walter, Klemperer - you realize that even among these firsthand witnesses there is no consensus at all. They differ so widely in their approach to the music that you can't really speak of a single "correct" approach that Mahler would have "approved" of.

During Mahler's lifetime the tempos were pretty consistent (performances were rare anyway). The big changes came after Mahler's death, with each disciple writing his own gospel, so to speak. But you're right, O: it doesn't matter and this takes me back to my earlier post when I said Mahler had been wrong about his tempos. Of course he wasn't literally wrong but music depends on individual interpretation and tempos are never going to be agreed on. (Most conductors ignore Beethoven's tempo indications; they must think he was wrong!). I think the music has slowed down because it sounds better that way. That's the way I prefer to hear it anyway (generally speaking; there are exceptions).

Sarge
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: Sergeant Rock on May 08, 2007, 02:19:20 PM
Forgive me if this is the wrong place to ask.

But next semester, I am playing Mahler 4 in school, so I was wondering what good recordings of it I should look for.  Thanks :)

Szell and Maazel are both in the top tier and both are budget priced. I prefer Maazel because I'm in love with Kathleen Battle's voice...and because Maazel gives her all the room she needs.

Sarge
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: MishaK on May 08, 2007, 02:31:35 PM
During Mahler's lifetime the tempos were pretty consistent (performances were rare anyway).

Says who?

(Most conductors ignore Beethoven's tempo indications; they must think he was wrong!). I think the music has slowed down because it sounds better that way. That's the way I prefer to hear it anyway (generally speaking; there are exceptions).

What is appropriate with any given band in any given acoustic is relative. I welcome the variety. I am reminded of the Boulez quote that I posted in the old forum before. When asked why he often ignores some of the markings in his own scores when performing his own works, Boulez replied "When I compose, I cook with water. When I conduct, I cook with fire!" I doubt Beethoven himself took all of his metronome markings literally when he performed.
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: Sergeant Rock on May 08, 2007, 02:34:57 PM
Says who?

La Grange in his book Gustav Mahler

Sarge
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: Sergeant Rock on May 08, 2007, 02:46:49 PM
What is appropriate with any given band in any given acoustic is relative.

That's one consideration but it doesn't explain why one conductor's Adagietto is 7 minutes long and another's 15.

Quote
I welcome the variety.

So do I. It would be a very dull world if everyone played the music the same way. But we are often asked to state our ultimate preferences...and we all do have preferences. We all know what recordings we'd take to the desert island. Few of us would say, it does't matter, give me any old recording. Tempo is often a crucial factor...well, for me it is anyway.

Sarge
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: MishaK on May 09, 2007, 07:21:08 AM
La Grange in his book Gustav Mahler

And what's his source?
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: Marc on May 09, 2007, 09:14:31 AM
I'm not ignoring you, Marc. I'm still digesting your post and will reply eventually.

Sarge

Sarge, no problem at all. Take your time.
(Actually, when I myself read my posting again, I must admit that it looks like some kind of a heavy 'outburst'. But, while talking about Mahler and his music, I permit myself to do that once in a while. ;))
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: from the new world on May 09, 2007, 10:32:23 AM
That's one consideration but it doesn't explain why one conductor's Adagietto is 7 minutes long and another's 15.

Though one thing to mention is that the nearly 17 minute adagietto played by Cobra, is deliberately played at half the intended tempo, so is actually equivalent to 8.5 min. This explains why he takes over 2 hours to do a Schubert 9th, and 80 minutes for Beethoven's 7th.
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: Steve on May 09, 2007, 10:41:30 AM
That is all very lovely but where to find the bloody thing. I've been wanting to hear it for years and never could track down a copy.

Mine, was in the form of a gift. I will find out where he obtained it.  :)
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: Sergeant Rock on May 10, 2007, 02:25:21 AM
And what's his source?

Various: timings annotated in the conductors' scores are one source; reviews of the concerts; anecdotes written by people who were in the audience and noted the times.

Sarge
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: Sergeant Rock on May 10, 2007, 03:35:49 AM
Wasn't this maybe the case with Mahler and Alma? Was he able to love her in the 'average' way? Didn't he want to love her in his 'own way'? Was this to be said in the 'Adagietto', like a kind of very personal love song?
Mahler and Mengelberg became close friends when Mahler visited the Netherlands. Maybe he discussed his feelings for Alma with Mengelberg and others? Like he did with Freud, in Leiden?

Sure. As I said before, why would Mengelberg make up the story? It's even possible Mahler told the conductor but didn't tell Alma what the music really meant...which would explain her silence on the subject. Now, whether the average person is still going to hear it as a "love song," even if Mahler meant that, I still doubt. Of course I consider myself the average person in this context  ;D

Quote
Für dich leben! Für dich sterben .... Almschi!

Tenth symphony: a love song??

Well, those final pages contain some of the most intensely emotional music ever written and surely express his feelings for Alma but yeah...what were those feelings? Love certainly, and a willingness to sacrifice himself, if only metaphorically...but I hear doubt too, and incredible pain.

Quote
How many of us are able to really feel this way for another human being?
Alma was much younger than Mahler; somehow I get the feeling that their interpretations of 'real love' were not the same. So she tried her 'luck' with others, like Gropius. Maybe Mahler could foresee this in an earlier stage? Maybe he was already amazed by the fact that this 'most wanted woman in Vienna and widely spread neighbourhood' fell in love with him. Could he really believe it?

This is the part of your post that gave me the most pause. It really hit home. I took it personally. In high school I fell in love with a girl everyone thought was way out of my league. I was a bit amazed too she fell for me and I often felt insecure...and jealous. She inspired a lot of poetry. When she left me suddenly and never talked to me again--literally never spoke to me again--I was devastated and it "ruined" my life. I quit university and joined the army in a grand "romantic" gesture. I continued to write poetry, the Jean Poems, over the next three decades. To me they are all love poems. In 1996 I contacted her when her mother died; we exchanged letters. She apologized for the way she'd treated me and admitted her life hadn't turned out well. I sent her a few of the poems, asking her if she'd like to read the entire cycle. I never heard from her again ;D

Attempting to read them objectively, I could see that my obsession with her might not be attractive, might not even be considered "love" to the average person. My poetry isn't the roses are red, violets are blue kind that people think of when thinking love poetry but are closer to the Rückertlieder and Winterreise in tone and mood.

JEAN FORTY-FIVE/SONNET TWENTY

You are my text, my reason to write. Not
a day has died since sixty-six, the Fall,
when you haven't appeared, disrupting thought
and dashing expectations like the "wrong"
notes in a sixteenth century madrigal
by Gesualdo that startle but enthrall
and weave us moody into dissonant
textures. You clash with my life; like a gong,
shatter my peaceful consonance in the light
of 9 p.m., walking down hillside vines;
the clashing note I use to fashion lines,
a song, as evening darkens into night,
broods into West where, still, a pale light shines,
where my text doth lie, my reason to write.



So, yeah, I understand what you mean when you say Mahler's idea of love wouldn't necessarily be Alma's. Your post made me think. Thank you.

Sarge


Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: karlhenning on May 10, 2007, 03:57:21 AM
Well, those final pages contain some of the most intensely emotional music ever written and surely express his feelings for Alma but yeah...what were those feelings? Love certainly, and a willingness to sacrifice himself, if only metaphorically...but I hear doubt too, and incredible pain.

What were those feelings, indeed!  That is part of music's seductive powers . . . it feels so genuine, so immediate, yet it is at the last impossible to map specific emotive content onto the music.
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: Sergeant Rock on May 10, 2007, 03:59:41 AM
What were those feelings, indeed!  That is part of music's seductive powers . . . it feels so genuine, so immediate, yet it is at the last impossible to map specific emotive content onto the music.

Your real name is Karl Hanslick, isn't it  ;D

Sarge
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: PaulR on May 10, 2007, 05:34:02 AM
Szell and Maazel are both in the top tier and both are budget priced. I prefer Maazel because I'm in love with Kathleen Battle's voice...and because Maazel gives her all the room she needs.

Sarge
Thank you!
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: uffeviking on May 10, 2007, 08:15:03 AM
My latest additions to my Mahler collection are three DVDs from Philips, Symphonies No. 1 & 2, next DVD No. 3 and the third Nos. 4 & 7, all conducted by Bernard Haitink and played by the Berliner Philharmoniker. All performances are from the early nineties.

So far I only watched No. 1 and really like it. Surprised by Haitink's visible involvement and lively actions, to the extent of allowing himself one leap of at least 3 inches off the podium. Only Lenny did not; unexpected from the usually cool Dutchman.

The orchestra is of course at it's best; they show how much they like playing this music guided and encouraged by the Maestro. The strings swing in the air of the huge Philharmonie, filled to the last seat. Both the woodwinds and the horns raise up their instruments to let us hear to the fullest the glorious sounds.

I am looking foreward to watch the next four symphonies and then I hope Philips will release all of them. Maybe they already did, but I have not found the source for them yet. 
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: Marc on May 10, 2007, 09:58:39 AM
What were those feelings, indeed!  That is part of music's seductive powers . . . it feels so genuine, so immediate, yet it is at the last impossible to map specific emotive content onto the music.

This, I think, is true. Our discussion about the Adagietto and the Rückert-song is another prove of that.

Sarge, about your reaction to my contributions, I couldn't decide whether I should place it on the forum or send you a PM. Because it belongs to the above-mentioned discussion, I finally thought it better to place it here:

I felt a bit insecure while reading your post. It was very emotional, very personal. I hope I didn't disturb you.

I tried to say something about love, and the meaning of love, in general, with Mahler's music somewhere floating in the background. Of course everyone has got their own experiences with feelings of love. Of course I do have them, too.

I know there are people who feel ruined when their overwhelming feelings of love aren't returned in a more or less satisfying way. I also think (know?) there are people who feel enrichened with whatever experience of love they feel or endure. They are somehow able to sublimate their feelings of grief into feelings of .... some sort of comfort and even happiness. (For example: happy just to give love without the taking.)
Of course Mahler suffered, and he must have suffered from the fact that Alma didn't return his love for her the way he wanted, or had hoped for. He kept on loving her any way. In his own way, in his own heaven .... maybe. (I admit I'm guessing, I'm not a graduated shrink ;). Or I'm just forcing myself to conclude something that 'proves' my hypothesis about the Rückert-song. [;) again].)

Maybe that's what some parts of his musical heritage is all about. His own picture of an idyllic alpine meadow, with a loving untouchable woman sitting in the grass. Withdrawn from the real world, and loving this 'Belle Dame sans Merci' in his own created world, his own idea of heaven. Maybe that's what I wanted to say in my posts.

Well, just another stream of thoughts. I'd like to add that I understand what you talked about in your reaction. Maybe this was your own 'Mahlerite' experience of love, or something that looked like that. Love is .... lovely, but in some cases it's also a lot of pain.
Thanks for your very personal contribution. It takes some courage to do that.


Regards,

Marc.


BTW: I had some problems to decide to write this in a PM or at the forum, mainly because of your personal associations, caused by my contributions. It's not my 'average' way to connect music this close to human emotions and feelings, and share that with 'every one' on a forum. I didn't think of the possible consequenses. Before you know it, this forum is about very personal subjects, and then there's always the risk of hurting someone (even when one didn't mean to). Although I really feel there is 'something' going on when listening to music. Mahler's music sometimes is a rather intruding example of that (not always, it really depends on my own state of mind). But of course, Karl 'Hanslick' Henning is right: what specific emotions are we talking about, when listening to - for instance - Schubert's string quintet or a Mahler song? I guess it can be almost anything, even when - as we proved - (poetic) lyrics are added. So many times, even though music can unite us all, we are, with our feelings, while listening and enjoying, .... allein in unserm Lied.
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: MishaK on May 10, 2007, 10:18:42 AM
But of course, Karl 'Hanslick' Henning is right: what specific emotions are we talking about, when listening to - for instance - Schubert's string quintet or a Mahler song? I guess it can be almost anything, even when - as we proved - (poetic) lyrics are added.

Which brings me to another point. What is far more important than the emotions conveyed at one given point or another of the piece, is the emotional progression or development of the interpretation. By analogy, you can plausibly interpret the role of Hamlet in the play in many different ways. You can make him an introvert or an extrovert, etc. But most important is that the character development is logical and plausible such that the audience will follow you. He can't already be stark raving mad in Act I. It's the same with music. Any given movement cannot be emotionally flat and constant from beginning to end. It has to have a development. Whether you see the Adagietto as a confession of deep love or as an estrangement from the world, either way is fine. But you have to plausibly convey that to the audience. And that depends on how you get from A to B, how you transition between the different elements of the movement, how you build toward the climax and how you let it dissolve thereafter. If this is plausible and convincing, you will have the audience eatnig out of your hand. That's why these comparisons of timings are of little help in assessing the qualities of a given interpretation.
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: Sergeant Rock on May 10, 2007, 12:47:44 PM
That's why these comparisons of timings are of little help in assessing the qualities of a given interpretation.

Since a conductor has to choose a tempo I assume he has reasons; and one of those reasons must be because it fits his interpretive goals. Tempo isn't the only thing that matters, of course, but it's primary, I think. Lenny wouldn't have gotten the same profound sense of grief and desolation had he chosen to play a seven minute Adagietto at JFK's funeral.

I think a discussion of tempo is vitally important when discussing performances and what they mean to us.

Sarge
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: Sergeant Rock on May 10, 2007, 12:57:20 PM

I felt a bit insecure while reading your post. It was very emotional, very personal. I hope I didn't disturb you.

No, not at all...my feelings are like old friends; I know them intimately. I just hadn't thought about some things in a very long time but I appreciated the opportunity you gave me to delve into my past again. I just hope I didn't disturb you! Poets are natural exhibitionists, you know, and we can cause embarrassment and/or giggles just like a streaker dashing through a crowd ;D  My favorite poet, John Berryman, used to say a poet couldn't be afraid to make a fool of himself in print. I've taken that to heart  :D

Sarge
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: MishaK on May 10, 2007, 01:07:27 PM
I think a discussion of tempo is vitally important when discussing performances and what they mean to us.

Sure, but only if one discusses tempo in relation to the rest of the interpretation. There are 9-minute Adagiettos that seem interminable and 12-minute Adagiettos that one wishes would go on forever. In and of itself, tempo alone is not a very informative variable.
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: Don on May 10, 2007, 01:27:21 PM
Sure, but only if one discusses tempo in relation to the rest of the interpretation. There are 9-minute Adagiettos that seem interminable and 12-minute Adagiettos that one wishes would go on forever. In and of itself, tempo alone is not a very informative variable.

I agree.  Tempo is one of the important variables, but more important is what the conductor/performer does with it.  For example, Gardiner tends to use quick tempos in his Bach Cantata recordings, giving the music a more celebratory element than one of reverence.  McCreesh also uses quick tempos, often giving off a rushed, not celebratory nature.
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: Sergeant Rock on May 10, 2007, 01:58:53 PM
Sure, but only if one discusses tempo in relation to the rest of the interpretation. There are 9-minute Adagiettos that seem interminable and 12-minute Adagiettos that one wishes would go on forever. In and of itself, tempo alone is not a very informative variable.

Of course not, but we're laying the foundation here: seeing what the range of tempi is first so we can then begin to compare what the conductors do with their chosen speeds. My theory, born out by listening to a dozen and more versions, is that a slower speed has a profound affect on the mood the Adagietto projects. Rushed through at seven or eight minutes, no matter what else the conductor does, isn't going to give you that same mood. If you can provide an example of a speed demon conductor who makes a dirge out of the movement at that speed, I'd like to hear it.

Sarge
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: Sergeant Rock on May 10, 2007, 02:02:33 PM
Tempo is one of the important variables

In and of itself, tempo alone is not a very informative variable.

Tempo isn't the only thing that matters, of course

Good, we're all in complete agreement  ;D

Sarge
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: uffeviking on May 10, 2007, 02:17:16 PM
Watched Mahler's Symphony No. 2 this afternoon and it's as excellent as No. 1. Sylvia McNair and Jard van Nes are the soloists and the Ernst-Senff-Choir's massed voices putting a glorious finishing touch to this work.

Bernard Haitink and the Berliner Philharmoniker are again a superb team and it is amazing how the musicians respond to the conducting with an exactness not often achieved. When Haitink calls for the end, there is not one note to be heard, not a fraction of a note as so often happens with other orchestras, some flute or horn trailing a tiny bit. Not in this performance, everything is perfect.
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: Marc on May 13, 2007, 09:21:11 AM
I am looking foreward to watch the next four symphonies and then I hope Philips will release all of them. Maybe they already did, but I have not found the source for them yet. 

AFAIK, on DVD, this is all, Haitink doing Mahler 'live' in Berlin. Both the live videos and the studio CD's were stopped by Philips before Haitink could finish his second (third, if you include the live videos) complete cycle. Can't remember why. Maybe they thought: there are already too much Mahler cycles, and maybe the sales figures were too low.
To me personally: a pity; because I was very curious about Haitink's Berliner Ninth. But it turned out to be The Ninth that never was. :'(
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: uffeviking on May 13, 2007, 12:19:50 PM
AFAIK, on DVD, this is all, Haitink doing Mahler 'live' in Berlin. Both the live videos and the studio CD's were stopped by Philips before Haitink could finish his second (third, if you include the live videos) complete cycle. Can't remember why. Maybe they thought: there are already too much Mahler cycles, and maybe the sales figures were too low.
To me personally: a pity; because I was very curious about Haitink's Berliner Ninth. But it turned out to be The Ninth that never was. :'(

Thank you for that bit of sad news! There can never be enough of any Mahler recordings, whether on CD or DVD. Not that many videos available anyhow!  :'(
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: Steve on May 13, 2007, 04:16:03 PM
Thank you for that bit of sad news! There can never be enough of any Mahler recordings, whether on CD or DVD. Not that many videos available anyhow!  :'(

I share your opinion. Personally, I would love to seem some CSO Live Mahler recordings from the old days.  ;D
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: MishaK on May 16, 2007, 05:47:57 AM
I share your opinion. Personally, I would love to seem some CSO Live Mahler recordings from the old days.  ;D

Well, there is at least a Martinon Mahler 3 available on a Collector's Edition 10CD set from the Symphony Store, which I am told is fantastic. I think there may be an 8 with the same forces as well on another such Centennial Edition or something. I haven't heard either one though. Barenboim's Mahler 5 is also live, though not from the "old days", recorded live on tour in the Cologne Philharmonie in 1997 and is available both on CD and DVD. One of my top three choices for the 5th. As of a few days ago there is now the wonderful CSO live Mahler 3 CD with Haitink as well, recorded last October.
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: Haffner on May 16, 2007, 05:57:08 AM
Does anyone know of any great books on Gustav Mahler, his life and music, please?
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: Sergeant Rock on May 16, 2007, 06:13:22 AM
Does anyone know of any great books on Gustav Mahler, his life and music, please?

Gustav Mahler by Henry-Louis de La Grange is in a class of its own. Four volumes, 4000 pages long. The final volume and the revised first volume are still waiting the English translation.

Edit: just checked Amazon. The first two volumes can be had for a good price. The third volume is still very expensive.

Sarge
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: Haffner on May 16, 2007, 06:17:45 AM
Gustav Mahler by Henry-Louis de La Grange is in a class of its own. Four volumes, 4000 pages long. The final volume and the revised first volume are still waiting the English translation.

Sarge



His relationship with his wife and family interests me, though I'd definitely have to say that Mahler's music as a general rule is far more fascinating.

A fantastic composer, one of my favorites.

I'm interested in this release, has it already come up yet?
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: Sergeant Rock on May 16, 2007, 06:27:48 AM


His relationship with his wife and family interests me, though I'd definitely have to say that Mahler's music as a general rule is far more fascinating.

The book is virtually a day by day account of his life but his music is given a thorough analysis too.

Quote
A fantastic composer, one of my favorites.

I'm interested in this release, has it already come up yet?

If you mean on this thread, no I don't believe so but it has been discussed quite a bit on the old forum. I like it very much. The Scherzo is incredible, very slow as it should be, I think. For those who prefer a swift Adagietto, Barshai could be your man. For me the major disappointment is his handling of the chorale theme in the second and fifth movements. I want a conductor to really pull in the reins here, stretch it out as long as possible. Barshai rushes through it, missing much of the grandeur. Conductors I prefer on that account: Barenboim, Karajan, Barbirolli, and Neumann/Leipzig.

The Tenth is interesting as an alternative to the Cooke editions.

Sarge
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: karlhenning on May 16, 2007, 06:31:43 AM
"Reconstruction" doesn't seem quite the right word, does it?
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: Sergeant Rock on May 16, 2007, 06:33:38 AM
"Reconstruction" doesn't seem quite the right word, does it?

No, not at all. "Performing Edition" makes more sense.

Sarge
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: MishaK on May 16, 2007, 08:00:17 AM
The Tenth is interesting as an alternative to the Cooke editions.

I actually prefer Barshai's version.

As to books, this is very readable:

(http://ec1.images-amazon.com/images/I/41TF44VJB9L._AA240_.jpg)
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: Haffner on May 16, 2007, 08:01:46 AM
I actually prefer Barshai's version.

As to books, this is very readable:

(http://ec1.images-amazon.com/images/I/41TF44VJB9L._AA240_.jpg)





I'll probably end up getting both, though my HvK rendition is very much adored.
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: uffeviking on May 16, 2007, 08:09:25 AM
Two very usefull books for any lover of Mahler's music - bypassing the usual tabloid-style reports on his married life - :
Constantin Floros: Gustav Mahler. The Symphonies.
And Theodor W. Adorno: Mahler. A musical Physiognomy. Not easy reading, the Adorno book, but it provides lots of food for thought.
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: Haffner on May 16, 2007, 08:19:22 AM
Two very usefull books for any lover of Mahler's music - bypassing the usual tabloid-style reports on his married life - :
Constantin Floros: Gustav Mahler. The Symphonies.
And Theodor W. Adorno: Mahler. A musical Physiognomy. Not easy reading, the Adorno book, but it provides lots of food for thought.



Thank you!
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: Brewski on May 16, 2007, 08:20:13 AM
Awhile back a friend gave me a copy of Gilbert Kaplan's The Mahler Album, which I enjoyed very much.  It is filled with illustrations and photos, and very handsomely produced.  I think it sells new for around $75 but you could probably find a copy for less.

--Bruce

(http://images.amazon.com/images/P/0810942798.01.LZZZZZZZ.jpg)

Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: BachQ on May 16, 2007, 03:01:37 PM
Four volumes, 4000 pages long.

I understand that the audio version of this is a hot seller . . . . . . .
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: Sergeant Rock on May 17, 2007, 02:05:17 AM
I understand that the audio version of this is a hot seller . . . . . . .

Yes, especially the abridged edition with a space-saving box containing only 100 cassettes.

Sarge
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: Haffner on May 17, 2007, 04:17:41 AM
Yes, especially the abridged edition with a space-saving box containing only 100 cassettes.

Sarge





Bah! I made a lovely coffee table out of the original set of 500 (not including the little known 100 micro-cassette recorded bibliography!)


Yeah-hooooo, dude!
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: Bonehelm on May 31, 2007, 09:35:44 PM
Gustav needs a thread !!

I'm currently studying him: Collecting tons of different recordings, borrowing biographies and analysis from the library, and soon I'm going to see him live. Lets talk about this man!  ;D

1. What do you think about Mahler's symphonic language and orchestration?

2. Do you think he is one of the greatest symphonists of all time?

3. What's your favorite work by him?

4. Have you been emotionally, spiritually, or even physically overwhelmed by the power of his works?


For me...

1. Incredibly versatile, wide dynamic ranges, huge variety of colors and moods, rock solid, heart touching...mind blowing...everything.

2. Yes, up there with Beethoven and Mozart

3. Resurrection symphony for now, need to hear more

4. Yes, every time I listen to his music
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: Greta on June 01, 2007, 03:32:04 AM
I see you're falling under Mahler's spell Bonehelm! Here is the thread you're looking for, you could repost this there:

Mahler Mania, Rebooted (http://www.good-music-guide.com/community/index.php/topic,683.0.html)

It would've been named Mahler Mania, but that thread turned into a debate about how complex Mahler is, and a million other things, so I renamed it The Great Everything Mahler Debate.

It's so cool to see the enthusiastic people here starting on the Mahler journey recently! I'm still but a wayfarer myself...
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: Haffner on June 01, 2007, 03:58:40 AM
Almschi Acres . . . .




It's the place to be...
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: mahlertitan on June 01, 2007, 04:54:14 AM

1. What do you think about Mahler's symphonic language and orchestration?

colorful, unique, profoundly moving, fantastic, etc...

2. Do you think he is one of the greatest symphonists of all time?

yes

3. What's your favorite work by him?

The Titan symphony of course

4. Have you been emotionally, spiritually, or even physically overwhelmed by the power of his works?

yes, of course.
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: karlhenning on June 01, 2007, 04:58:07 AM
Gustav needs a thread !!

You didn't like this one? (http://www.good-music-guide.com/community/index.php/topic,683.0.html)  8)
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: Haffner on June 01, 2007, 06:09:15 AM
1. What do you think about Mahler's symphonic language and orchestration?

colorful, unique, profoundly moving, fantastic, etc...



MT said it, and very well. I might add the phrase "requiring the listener's attention like few other works of music, but ultimately providing the same kind of aesthetic and entertainment payback that any great novel does"


2. Do you think he is one of the greatest symphonists of all time?

yes



Again, MT has it. I won't be too popular for this opinion, but I find several movements in Mahler's Symphonies and Song Cycles which involve, impress, and effect me far more profoundly than the Symphonic works of Beethoven...or even Mozart.


3. What's your favorite work by him?

Symphonies 3, 4, 6, and 9, und Das Lied Von Der Erde



4. Have you been emotionally, spiritually, or even physically overwhelmed by the power of his works?

Abso-rootin-tootely-utely. The 3rd, 9th, and DLVDE in particular. Remarkable achievements.


Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: Bonehelm on June 01, 2007, 12:10:58 PM
You didn't like this one? (http://www.good-music-guide.com/community/index.php/topic,683.0.html)  8)

Sorry Karl, didn't see this thread since it was on the 4th page.
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: Sergeant Rock on June 01, 2007, 02:32:19 PM
1. What do you think about Mahler's symphonic language and orchestration?

MT said it: unique. And I'll add, instantly recognizable. I'm astounded by Mahler's Titan: where did it come from? Like the Symphonie fantastique, it seems to have been self-generated, sprung to life fully formed with not a single classical precedent (lots of folk and pop music precedents though). No wonder it puzzled, disturbed, even infuriated the first listeners.

I love Mahler's orchestration, particularly his use of low brass, piercing woodwind, and percussion. His symphonies are fun to watch: the Third employs a full battery of percussion and needs seven players minimum. But it's the subtle percussive effects that are most intriguing: the soft swoosh of the cymbals in the Nachtmusik of the Seventh, for example. Even the non-percussive instruments sometimes play percussively: Mahler asks the violin section to wack the body of their instruments with their bows in the buildup to the climax of the Second Symphony's first movement development (just before the recapitulation). It's a really frightening sound that increases the tension greatly. (Unfortunately, in too many recordings, that effect is barely audible: listen to Kaplan/Vienna to hear how it should sound.)

Another thing I love about Mahler's sound is the Klezmer influence. I was listening to Kindertotenlieder the other day and again heard the wailing Klezmer clarinet. Striking sound, and wonderful, and immeasurably sad.


2. Do you think he is one of the greatest symphonists of all time?

Without a doubt.


3. What's your favorite work by him?

Just one??? Okay, the Sixth..but there's not a single work of his I don't love, including that wonderful piano quartet movement, written when he was a student.

4. Have you been emotionally, spiritually, or even physically overwhelmed by the power of his works?


Emotionally, oh yes. The bastard always gets to me. ;D  Physically, yeah, definitely...so much so that I have to be careful nowadays. I have a chronic medical condition and I can't let myself get too carried away.

Spiritually? I don't know...I don't know what that means really. When I break down my feelings and response to the music, I end up with a lot of emotional and intellectual terms. The same thing happens during a church service. I can't really say I've had a spiritual moment.

Sarge
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: Bonehelm on June 01, 2007, 06:31:21 PM
1. What do you think about Mahler's symphonic language and orchestration?

MT said it: unique. And I'll add, instantly recognizable. I'm astounded by Mahler's Titan: where did it come from? Like the Symphonie fantastique, it seems to have been self-generated, sprung to life fully formed with not a single classical precedent (lots of folk and pop music precedents though). No wonder it puzzled, disturbed, even infuriated the first listeners.

I love Mahler's orchestration, particularly his use of low brass, piercing woodwind, and percussion. His symphonies are fun to watch: the Third employs a full battery of percussion and needs seven players minimum. But it's the subtle percussive effects that are most intriguing: the soft swoosh of the cymbals in the Nachtmusik of the Seventh, for example. Even the non-percussive instruments sometimes play percussively: Mahler asks the violin section to wack the body of their instruments with their bows in the buildup to the climax of the Second Symphony's first movement development (just before the recapitulation). It's a really frightening sound that increases the tension greatly. (Unfortunately, in too many recordings, that effect is barely audible: listen to Kaplan/Vienna to hear how it should sound.)

Another thing I love about Mahler's sound is the Klezmer influence. I was listening to Kindertotenlieder the other day and again heard the wailing Klezmer clarinet. Striking sound, and wonderful, and immeasurably sad.


2. Do you think he is one of the greatest symphonists of all time?

Without a doubt.


3. What's your favorite work by him?

Just one??? Okay, the Sixth..but there's not a single work of his I don't love, including that wonderful piano quartet movement, written when he was a student.

4. Have you been emotionally, spiritually, or even physically overwhelmed by the power of his works?


Emotionally, oh yes. The bastard always gets to me. ;D  Physically, yeah, definitely...so much so that I have to be careful nowadays. I have a chronic medical condition and I can't let myself get too carried away.

Spiritually? I don't know...I don't know what that means really. When I break down my feelings and response to the music, I end up with a lot of emotional and intellectual terms. The same thing happens during a church service. I can't really say I've had a spiritual moment.

Sarge

Thanks for the detailed input Sarge, and spiritually is like...well me for example, first time hearing his 2nd symphony almost converted me to Christianity...
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: Haffner on June 02, 2007, 07:40:09 AM
Thanks for the detailed input Sarge, and spiritually is like...well me for example, first time hearing his 2nd symphony almost converted me to Christianity...





Mahler's 3rd and 9th affirmed my own faith.
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: Greta on June 03, 2007, 10:01:02 PM
I just got a laugh! I got Karajan's live 9th on DG and looked at the track titles, and it actually says for some sections "Horns", "Brass", "Clarinets"...I guess because those smaller sections don't have specific tempo names. How funny! Those are about as good as I do for the signposts in my head when I'm listening myself. :D 

Wow, the 9th is absolutely transcendent. And it's really forward looking to the modern era, isn't it? Is this the one Schoenberg admired the most? I can definitely see why.

The 1st mvmt. shares some things in common with the 4th's Adagio and a little with the 5th's Adagietto, but also is interspersed with moments of sweeping chaos where he dances at the very edge of tonality. That thick mesh of polytonal writing where all the lines are moving at once, after the first big cries (Allegro risoluto), and those spooky brass clusters following. Incredible. This REALLY makes me wonder what he would've written if he'd not died young. I feel like studying this score is a black hole you could fall into. Such extremely complex and sophisticated writing!

I had to come back to edit this to say, it's really so affecting the way it vacillates between hope and despair, with pure bewilderment thrown in between. Almost painful at times. More than in any I feel here he's stuck in the nebulous place between two worlds, looking fondly back, despairing at going, and contemplating the beyond he's going to with this awed wonder and breathless confused mystery, (in the Wie von anfang and Lento!) I keep coming back in this mvmt. to those themes in his 4th and 5th Adagios, then he was gazing up at Heaven, but now it's this alternately scary, breathtaking beautiful reality. And when you consider the links between "I Am Lost to the World" and the 5th Adagietto, and the way he twists and distorts that theme in the middle of the Wie von anfang. I feel he's journeying down the tunnel towards the light, torn and unsure, and finally he comes to terms with it in the final minutes, the angels take him by the hand and say, "It's okay." The flute and violin solos...the angels' comforting voices...

And this is just the first movement!  :o I listened to this symphony only once before and it was just overwhelming, I knew I needed time, a lot of time, to come back to it, and finally here I am.
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: Haffner on June 04, 2007, 04:49:24 AM
I just got a laugh! I got Karajan's live 9th on DG and looked at the track titles, and it actually says for some sections "Horns", "Brass", "Clarinets"...I guess because those smaller sections don't have specific tempo names. How funny! Those are about as good as I do for the signposts in my head when I'm listening myself. :D 

Wow, the 9th is absolutely transcendent. And it's really forward looking to the modern era, isn't it? Is this the one Schoenberg admired the most? I can definitely see why.



You got an excellent recording. Just wait until the 3rd movement supa-dupa-fuga and the incomparable 4th movement hit you! JA! Great stuff!
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: Bonehelm on June 16, 2007, 11:32:24 AM
I'm planning on buying one more M8 on top of my Kubelik and Bertini set, because I'm that addicted to symphony of a thousand.

Here is what I want in my M8:

1. Earth-shattering power  8)
2. Intense, overwhelming endings in both movements
3. Strong organ sound
4. Clear, crisp details
5. Efficient use of rubato, with lots of emotion

That's about it. Let the game begin.  ;)
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: Brewski on June 16, 2007, 12:07:28 PM
Well, my favorite is with Chailly, but with several caveats: the CD was made from live recordings, but Jane Eaglen's voice was added later.  Also, Chailly is a bit slower in this piece, as he is in some of his other Mahler symphonies.  To me it works beautifully, increasing the weight and grandeur, but those who like faster versions (say, Solti's) probably won't go for this one. 

So that said, this recording is quite amazing, both in performance and sound quality.  (I just got some splendid new Sennheiser headphones and can't wait to test this recording on them.)  I especially like the organ in the Concertgebouw, a grand old instrument with a huge sound -- no mistaking the entrances of this!  The soloists, choruses and orchestra are all excellent, and Chailly has an opera lover's sense of pacing and drama.

(http://ec1.images-amazon.com/images/I/41R6P5230KL._AA240_.jpg)

--Bruce
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: Bunny on June 16, 2007, 12:19:54 PM
I'm planning on buying one more M8 on top of my Kubelik and Bertini set, because I'm that addicted to symphony of a thousand.

Here is what I want in my M8:

1. Earth-shattering power  8)
2. Intense, overwhelming endings in both movements
3. Strong organ sound
4. Clear, crisp details
5. Efficient use of rubato, with lots of emotion

That's about it. Let the game begin.  ;)

Solti
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: Bonehelm on June 16, 2007, 12:32:29 PM
Thanks for the recommendations from both of you.  :)
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: Lilas Pastia on June 16, 2007, 12:45:47 PM
I like Neeme Järvi's live Stockholm account. It's of the slam-bang persuasion, in superb, rock-solid  sound. IMO it fills all your requirements.
You can buy the download at eclassical for just 2.98$ :D

Better soloists can be heard on the Solti version, which is pretty much in the same mould. Tension sags a bit in part 2 ,though.

Watch out for the new DG by Boulez: it should kill most competitors (to judge from an earlier BBC release).
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: PerfectWagnerite on June 16, 2007, 12:54:29 PM
Solti for me also. Beautifully recorded and sung, with the CSO in it's peak form.
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: Bonehelm on June 16, 2007, 01:00:33 PM
Would you guys be kind enough to tell me which Solti in particular? I just want to make sure I get the right set. Thanks  :)
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: Lilas Pastia on June 16, 2007, 01:06:52 PM
There's only one. It's on Decca but you may find it under various guises. It's been reissued a few times.
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: Bonehelm on June 16, 2007, 01:08:59 PM
There's only one. It's on Decca but you may find it under various guises. It's been reissued a few times.

Thanks. I think you mean this:

(http://www8.plala.or.jp/bone_trom/my_music/mahler_club/soltiMahler.gif) for the complete box and

(http://www.me.ucr.edu/~xli0/cd/SolMah8.jpg) for the 8th. Right?  :D
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: Sergeant Rock on June 16, 2007, 01:10:14 PM
Would you guys be kind enough to tell me which Solti in particular? I just want to make sure I get the right set. Thanks  :)

This one (http://www.amazon.com/Mahler-Symphony-No-John-Shirley-Quirk/dp/B000E6EGYQ/ref=sr_1_4/105-7245042-3406051?ie=UTF8&s=music&qid=1182031451&sr=1-4)

I'm with Bruce. Chailly is my current favorite and would make an interesting interpretive contrast to the two you own now.

I heard Boulez conduct it live in Berlin a few months ago. His recording is definitely on my wishlist.

Sarge
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: stingo on June 16, 2007, 01:54:15 PM
As much as I respect Bruce's and Sarge's opinions on matters musical, I just cannot get into Chailly's M8. As I've beaten a dead horse before, it sounds like a chamber version of the 8th symphony to me. I will have to give it another try to hear what the others were hearing. That said, I think Tennstedt's is a more profound reading, Solti's more ecstatic and Rattle's somewhere in between. I could easily listen to any of the three, but if forced to choose, I'd pick the Rattle but only by the smallest of margins.
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: Papageno on June 16, 2007, 02:06:28 PM
Das Lied von der Erder - Otto Klemperer
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: Bonehelm on June 16, 2007, 02:57:38 PM
Das Lied von der Erder - Otto Klemperer

??? pretty off topic but ok, thanks for the suggestion.
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: MishaK on June 16, 2007, 02:58:01 PM
Another vote for the Chailly.
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: MishaK on June 16, 2007, 02:58:58 PM
I heard Boulez conduct it live in Berlin a few months ago. His recording is definitely on my wishlist.

You can get a recording of the live broadcast off operashare.
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: Papageno on June 16, 2007, 03:02:09 PM
??? pretty off topic but ok, thanks for the suggestion.

Ah, an 8th, I just noticed.
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: Drasko on June 16, 2007, 03:42:40 PM
You can get a recording of the live broadcast off operashare.

Or just around the corner, here

http://www.good-music-guide.com/community/index.php/topic,1125.0.html (http://www.good-music-guide.com/community/index.php/topic,1125.0.html)
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: Philoctetes on June 16, 2007, 03:45:46 PM
The Boulez Mahler 8th is getting released?!

That is freaking sweet.

Soon they might box them all together. That would be nice.
 :)
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: Bunny on June 16, 2007, 03:52:04 PM
As much as I respect Bruce's and Sarge's opinions on matters musical, I just cannot get into Chailly's M8. As I've beaten a dead horse before, it sounds like a chamber version of the 8th symphony to me. I will have to give it another try to hear what the others were hearing. That said, I think Tennstedt's is a more profound reading, Solti's more ecstatic and Rattle's somewhere in between. I could easily listen to any of the three, but if forced to choose, I'd pick the Rattle but only by the smallest of margins.

Chailly's Mahler 8th is excellent, but if someone wants an OTT version that's characterized by:

1. Earth-shattering power  8)
2. Intense, overwhelming endings in both movements
3. Strong organ sound
4. Clear, crisp details
5. Efficient use of rubato, with lots of emotion


then they aren't going to be satisfied with the Chailly, or even the Nagano.  Solti fits the bill for this set of attributes, although details might not be as clear as they would be with other recordings.  But, 4 out of 5 ain't bad.
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: uffeviking on June 16, 2007, 04:17:28 PM
High time to call Mahler back into our memory and one of the current best interpreters of him is no doubt Piere Boulez.

I enjoyed the afternoon watching a new DVD available from EuroArts with Boulez conducting Mahler Symphony No. 2 with the Staatskapelle Berlin and Diana Damrau, soprano and Petra Lang, mezzo-soprano the soloists. It was on the occasion of the maestro's 80th birthday and all involved contributed their very best to the celebration.

If you want to see this huge assembly of musicians and singers following their outstanding conductor in a powerful performance, you will be rewarded when buying this DVD.
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: PSmith08 on June 16, 2007, 05:47:17 PM
What about Klaus Tennstedt's 1986 (LPO) recording? I find him a little less driven (manic, even) than Solti, but incredibly precise. There is also, in the same vein, Rafael Kubelik's 1970 (BRSO) record. Neither of them are as brash and flashy as Solti, but they are no less powerful in their own way. I'd say Tennstedt flirts with ecstasy, if you follow my meaning, more than either Kubelik or Solti. He has more of a chamber-like orchestral texture, but this isn't Wagner we're talking about here. Ultimately, I'd say that Tennstedt's has the power and the glory the OP seems to want, and a somewhat more analytical and cooler view than Solti.
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: Sergeant Rock on June 17, 2007, 02:03:48 AM
You can get a recording of the live broadcast off operashare.

Already have it, O. Grabbed it when you first pointed it out. Thanks again.

Sarge
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: Raisa on June 17, 2007, 04:00:46 AM
I can recommend this DVD. Just released: (http://ec1.images-amazon.com/images/I/41MMB8rezVL._SS500_.jpg)

Claudio Abbado conducting the Lucerne Festival Orchestra last year in Mahler's 6th. This was a huge experience!
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: Lilas Pastia on June 17, 2007, 04:48:47 AM
Another 8th I highly value is the Davis BRSO (RCA). Recording is very natural, not the hothouse variety (Solti). Excellent soloists and a truly orgasmic conclusion.
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: Papy Oli on June 18, 2007, 12:22:05 PM
Hi All,

I have been thinking of expanding my Mahler CDs with going more onto individual versions. I only have the Bertini cycle, good enough for all i know, with a couple of individual performances (in bold below). For my exercise, I have been going through soem of the information from this site and others (Tony Duggan, Classics today, Amazon reviews,..), books like All Music Guide, etc. I appreciate that opinions will of course vary on such and such recording and no recording is definitive in itself, but i aim at building myself a cycle with ideally as many conductors as possible, to sample the various approaches, but still sticking to recordings considered "essential" in each symphony/piece.   

I mostly listen to M2/M1/M5/M6 and i hope i can benefit of other versions for the remaining pieces, as the Bertini's doesn't really grab me so far for those latter.

again, in bold are the ones i already own, in italic, the ones i am considering already.... Does that seem to you like a good starting list please ?

Thanks

Olivier

-----------------

Mahler 1st symphony

Kubelik/DG/Bavaria orch
Solti/LSO/Decca (coupled with M2)
Zinman / Tonhalle
Maazel / VPO

   
Mahler 2nd symphony   

Solti/LSO/Decca (coupled with M1)
Klemperer / EMI / GROTC
   
Mahler 3rd symphony   

Horenstein/LSO/Unicorn
Bernstein/Sony/NYPO
   
Mahler 4th symphony   

Szell/Sony/Cleveland
Reiner/Chicago/SO
   
Mahler 5th symphony   

Tennstedt/EMI
Inoue/RPO
Barbirolli/Philarmonia/EMI
Bernstein/VPO/DG
   
Mahler 6th symphony (not sure on those...)   

Abbado / DG / BPO
Szell
Barbirolli
Boulez
Eiji Oue / Fontec
Mitropoulos
   
Mahler 7th symphony   

Horenstein / New Philarmonia
Rattle/CBSO/EMI
Bernstein/Sony
Halasz/Naxos
   
Mahler 8th symphony   

Solti / Chicago SO / Decca
Segerstam / Chandos
   
Mahler 9th symphony   

Ancerl/Supraphone
Karajan/DG/Live
Klemperer / EMI
   
Mahler 10th symphony   

Rattle/Bornemouth/EMI
   
Mahler - Lied von Der Erde   

Bertini/EMI
Horenstein/BBC
   
Mahler - Kindertotenlieder   
 
Walter/Ferrier/VPO/Naxos



Edit : for alignments and clarity  0:)
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: Haffner on June 18, 2007, 02:05:33 PM
Hi All,

I have been thinking of expanding my Mahler CDs with going more onto individual versions. I only have the Bertini cycle, good enough for all i know, with a couple of individual performances (in bold below). For my exercise, I have been going through soem of the information from this site and others (Tony Duggan, Classics today, Amazon reviews,..), books like All Music Guide, etc. I appreciate that opinions will of course vary on such and such recording and no recording is definitive in itself, but i aim at building myself a cycle with ideally as many conductors as possible, to sample the various approaches, but still sticking to recordings considered "essential" in each symphony/piece.   







Do check out the Karajan 6th, you won't regret it.
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: MishaK on June 18, 2007, 02:28:01 PM
Mahler 1st symphony

Kubelik/DG/Bavaria orch
Solti/LSO/Decca (coupled with M2)
Zinman / Tonhalle
Maazel / VPO


The Solti is certainly pleasant but not in the best sound. Kubelik has not been surpassed here. That's easily the first choice.

Mahler 2nd symphony   

Solti/LSO/Decca (coupled with M1)
Klemperer / EMI / GROTC

May I recommend instead Haitink/Concertgebouw or Chailly/Concertgebouw? More color than Solti, less thick and square than Klemp.

Mahler 3rd symphony   

Horenstein/LSO/Unicorn
Bernstein/Sony/NYPO

Not familiar with eitehr of those, but I would again get either Haitink/CSO or Chailly/Concertgebouw. Glorious sound and glorious playing.

Mahler 4th symphony   

Szell/Sony/Cleveland
Reiner/Chicago/SO

Reiner is very good. But I would get Kletzki/VPO who really has an unsurpassed grasp of the subtle irony of this work.

Mahler 5th symphony   

Tennstedt/EMI
Inoue/RPO
Barbirolli/Philarmonia/EMI
Bernstein/VPO/DG

Chailly/Concertgebouw, Kubelik/BRSO to me are much more convincing than Bernstein or Barbirolli here. Haven't heard the others.
   
Mahler 6th symphony (not sure on those...)   

Abbado / DG / BPO
Szell
Barbirolli
Boulez
Eiji Oue / Fontec
Mitropoulos

I haven't heard any of those. Here I would get Solti/CSO or Tilson Thomas/SFSO. I am also told the new Eschenbach/Philly is outstanding, but haven't heard it yet. There is also an outstanding, but hard to find, Rattle/BPO live recording from the 80s (though he switches the middle movements around).

Mahler 7th symphony   

Horenstein / New Philarmonia
Rattle/CBSO/EMI
Bernstein/Sony
Halasz/Naxos

Forget those and get Barenboim/Staatskapelle Berlin. Rich, warm, yet transparent, pulsing, alive and always compelling.
   
Mahler 8th symphony   

Solti / Chicago SO / Decca
Segerstam / Chandos

Solti is certainly a classic, but the more recent Chailly/Concertgebouw comes in far better sound and with a warmer orchestral palette. Don't know Segerstam, but have been less than impressed with the sound engineering on the few chandos discs I have.
   
Mahler 9th symphony   

Ancerl/Supraphone
Karajan/DG/Live
Klemperer / EMI

All good choices. I would only add Barenboim/Staatskapelle Berlin. Same comments apply as for his 7th.

Mahler 10th symphony   

Rattle/Bornemouth/EMI

Right conductor and label, wrong orchestra. Get the same with the BPO instead. Much finer performance.
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: Lilas Pastia on June 18, 2007, 05:30:07 PM
A great first of unusual provenance is on the swiss label Novalis with Colin Davis and the BRSO. As good as Kubelik's, but rather more expansive and in spectacular yet very natural sound.

The Horenstein New Philharmonia 7th must be a figment of your imagination. Maybe you meant Klemperer?

For 5 and 10 (complete 5 movements), give a try to the cheap Barshai set. An instant classic.

O Mensch is right, you can do much worse than going for Haitink - Amsterdam, at least for symphonies 2, 3, 5, 7 and 9. Many think his 3 and 9 are top choices. Many don't but that's their problem ;D.
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: PSmith08 on June 18, 2007, 05:42:29 PM
One could do much worse than O Mensch's recommendations; however, I just can't help myself, so I'll throw in my 0.02$.

1. Kubelik (DGG, 1968): Still the reference. I like Ormandy's 1970 RCA record, but he doesn't really have the same way as Kubelik, and adds "Blumine." Not cool, IMO.

2. Mehta (Decca, 1975): Probably the recording that balances the apocalyptic and redemptive, the life and death best. Mehta really lit a fire for the WP on this one.

3. Haitink (Philips, 1966): This might be my reference M3. In any event, Haitink guides the Concertgebouw through a really first-rate performance.

4. Abbado (DGG, 2006): Abbado's "chamber-Mahler" doesn't work in every case, but in Mahler's most "Classical" effort, it pays off. You get La Renée, which isn't the ideal singer, in the fourth movement. If you want a great soprano, at least one who sounds the part, Reiner - Della Casa is a good combination. This is one for Abbado's unique approach to Mahler.

5. Von Karajan (DGG, 1973): For whatever reason, Von Karajan never established himself as a Mahlerian as publicly as other conductors did, and many of them really didn't have his talent. His 5th is slick, elegant, and has some horsepower under the hood when necessary.

6. Boulez (DGG, 1995): A thunderous, earth-shattering performance. Boulez' Mahler really should be experienced live, and this disc is as close of a recording as I have found. Overwhelming, inevitable, and powerful. You'll want to get Mitropoulos' 1959 WDRSO (Köln) performance, which is sui generis, but Boulez' is as good as anything you'd want.

7. Barenboim (Warner, 2006): Boulez' M7 was my favorite for a long time, until Barenboim took the field and won the game. It's powerful, intelligent, and I'll just agree with O Mensch.

8. Tennstedt (EMI, 1986): Another intelligent and well-thought-out performance from a Mahler conductor with his own ideas and the skill to realize them. Not as manic and brash as Solti, but with a spirituality and power all its own. Kubelik is one in this vein. If you want a rich, almost-Wagnerian, performance, Kent Nagano is the man for you.

9. Klemperer (EMI, 1967): Unflinching, granitic, and monolithic. Klemperer is Klemperer, and Mahler's symphony - IMO - benefits from such a dry-eyed approach. No sense making it a sob-fest. Bruno Maderna's 1971 BBCSO performance is interesting and no less powerful, but talk about manic.

These are just my suggestions. O Mensch makes good ones, too, and your choices weren't bad either.
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: Sergeant Rock on June 19, 2007, 04:40:20 AM
again, in bold are the ones i already own, in italic, the ones i am considering already.... Does that seem to you like a good starting list please ?

Looks good to me. I own most of them (not the Inoue 5, Mitropoulos 6, Horenstein 7 or Segerstam 8 ) and some are among my favorite versions. The only ones on your list I would not recommend: the Rattle 10 (his Berlin version is better but I still prefer Barshai, Gielen, Sanderling and above all, Ormandy) and the Naxos 7. Better to go with one of the great performances in this problematic (to some) symphony: Barenboim, Abbado (Chicago), Chailly or Bernstein (Sony or DG). My own favorite Seventh I don't recommend to anyone; it's just too weird ;D

I can't fault O or PSmith's recommendations. I particularly agree with O's choice of Solti for the 6th and Smith's Klemperer 9. Both recommended Barenboim in 7. So do I.

I'd add:

Maazel with Battle 4 (slowest last movement I've ever heard and it works beautifully)

Ozawa 1 (I love the Blumine; I think it fits perfectly between the first movement and the second. The five movement scheme seems very Mahlerian to me)

Kaplan 2 (either performance but I lean towards Vienna; arguably Kaplan knows this symphony better than anyone)

Haitink or Kubelik with Baker Das Lied von der Erde (Janet Baker...remember that name  8) )

Barbirolli with Baker Kindertotenlieder, Rückertlieder

Sarge
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: not edward on June 19, 2007, 04:47:37 AM
My own favorite Seventh I don't recommend to anyone; it's just too weird ;D
I'm probably going to get the Klemperer some time soon, actually. ;)
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: Sergeant Rock on June 19, 2007, 04:50:34 AM
I'm probably going to get the Klemperer some time soon, actually. ;)

Really? Cool   8)

Sarge
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: knight66 on June 19, 2007, 05:20:44 AM
Call centres and the incincere messages whilst I absorb my time holding until someone actually deals with me.

Mike
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: PSmith08 on June 19, 2007, 05:38:09 AM
Looks good to me. I own most of them (not the Inoue 5, Mitropoulos 6, Horenstein 7 or Segerstam 8 ) and some are among my favorite versions. The only ones on your list I would not recommend: the Rattle 10 (his Berlin version is better but I still prefer Barshai, Gielen, Sanderling and above all, Ormandy) and the Naxos 7. Better to go with one of the great performances in this problematic (to some) symphony: Barenboim, Abbado (Chicago), Chailly or Bernstein (Sony or DG). My own favorite Seventh I don't recommend to anyone; it's just too weird ;D

I can't fault O or PSmith's recommendations. I particularly agree with O's choice of Solti for the 6th and Smith's Klemperer 9. Both recommended Barenboim in 7. So do I.

I'd add:

Maazel with Battle 4 (slowest last movement I've ever heard and it works beautifully)

Ozawa 1 (I love the Blumine; I think it fits perfectly between the first movement and the second. The five movement scheme seems very Mahlerian to me)

Kaplan 2 (either performance but I lean towards Vienna; arguably Kaplan knows this symphony better than anyone)

Haitink or Kubelik with Baker Das Lied von der Erde (Janet Baker...remember that name  8) )

Barbirolli with Baker Kindertotenlieder, Rückertlieder

Sarge

The Ormandy performance of the M10 is, in my book, probably the best. It was, as I recall, sanctioned by the former Frau Mahler, at that point Frau Mahler-Gropius-Werfel, and it has a freshness that Cooke eventually revised out of the work. I doubt that removal was his intent, but it happened. Ormandy's Philadelphia crew, as elegant as ever, does a fine job with - from the 875 Gustav Mahler-completed bars to Cooke's completion of the remaining 1119 bars - Mahler's last and conceivably most-difficult symphony.

Either Haitink or Kubelik is a good rec. for Das Lied. I'm partial to the 1987 Salzburg performance by Giulini with Brigitte Fassbaender and Francisco Araiza, on Orfeo as part of its share of the Festspiel Dokumente program. Not bad, and Giulini's elegance works well.

Still, the Sergeant's recs, too, are hard to beat.
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: Sergeant Rock on June 19, 2007, 08:03:46 AM
The Ormandy performance of the M10 is, in my book, probably the best. It was, as I recall, sanctioned by the former Frau Mahler, at that point Frau Mahler-Gropius-Werfel, and it has a freshness that Cooke eventually revised out of the work. I doubt that removal was his intent, but it happened. Ormandy's Philadelphia crew, as elegant as ever, does a fine job with - from the 875 Gustav Mahler-completed bars to Cooke's completion of the remaining 1119 bars - Mahler's last and conceivably most-difficult symphony.

Agree completely. I've known this Mahler 10 for 40 years. It's remained my favorite Tenth despite hearing nearly every other recorded version. I heard Ormandy talk about the first time he and the Philadelphia played it in concert. He said during those closing pages of the last movement there was not a dry eye in the house. Hyperbole, of course, but that is exactly the emotion I feel when I listen to Ormandy's recording. It does choke me up. There are better sounding recordings but none plumb the emotional depths quite like Ormandy and Philadelphia.

Sarge
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: knight66 on June 19, 2007, 08:08:36 AM
Daft question here.....is the version Ormandy uses the Cook one and is it the same draft used in the much later recordings? I had thought the version Rattle for instance uses was new at the time. I don't have my Mahler CDs around to consult.

Mike
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: AnthonyAthletic on June 19, 2007, 08:34:46 AM
Daft question here.....is the version Ormandy uses the Cook one and is it the same draft used in the much later recordings? I had thought the version Rattle for instance uses was new at the time. I don't have my Mahler CDs around to consult.

Mike

Ormandy 1965 used Cooke's Version I which he completed in 1964, that was his first complete performing version.  Cooke Version 0 was from 1960 although the 1/3/5 were complete he only transcribed fragments of the 2nd & 4th movements

Cooke's revisions from 1966 to 1972 were the basis of all Mahler 10th recordings from 1972 to 1992.  And his final revisons the third Cook performing version was issued in 1989, I guess recordings from 1992 onwards use Cooke III, but the core of Mahler 10th's use Cooke II.

Then there's Barshai (Barshai Brilliant Issue), Carpenter (Andrew Litton), Wheeler (Robert Olson), Mazetti (only Slatkin did this that I know of), Samale/Mazzucca (not issued as a recording yet)

The Ormandy is one of my favourite Mahler 10th's also  ;)
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: PSmith08 on June 19, 2007, 08:41:52 AM
Daft question here.....is the version Ormandy uses the Cook one and is it the same draft used in the much later recordings? I had thought the version Rattle for instance uses was new at the time. I don't have my Mahler CDs around to consult.

Mike

Ormandy's recording is the premiere of the so-called Cooke I version, which had its premier under Berthold Goldschmidt in August 1964 at the Proms. This version was the only one to receive Frau Mahler's permission, as she died that year. Cooke II, 1966-1972, was premiered by Goldschmidt, too, and was the standard edition until Cooke III - done between 1972 and 1975, but interrupted by Cooke's 1976 death - which was published in 1989. Since Martinon's version is OOP, as far as I can tell, Ormandy's version is the only recording of Cooke I still on the market, which is a shame. Sentimentally, I think that Alma Mahler's approval makes Cooke I the hands-down choice; pragmatically, I know that you rarely get something as "right" as you do the first time after monkeying around with it.

Rattle used Cooke II, with some personal percussion revisions, as I recall, for his Bournemouth recordings, and Cooke III for his Berlin version. I think, in any event, that this was the case.
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: MishaK on June 19, 2007, 08:46:16 AM
Since Martinon's version is OOP, as far as I can tell...

With which orchestra was this?
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: karlhenning on June 19, 2007, 08:47:24 AM
Ormandy's recording is the premiere of the so-called Cooke I version, which had its premier under Berthold Goldschmidt in August 1964 at the Proms. This version was the only one to receive Frau Mahler's permission, as she died that year. Cooke II, 1966-1972, was premiered by Goldschmidt, too, and was the standard edition until Cooke III - done between 1972 and 1975, but interrupted by Cooke's 1976 death - which was published in 1989. Since Martinon's version is OOP, as far as I can tell, Ormandy's version is the only recording of Cooke I still on the market, which is a shame. Sentimentally, I think that Alma Mahler's approval makes Cooke I the hands-down choice; pragmatically, I know that you rarely get something as "right" as you do the first time after monkeying around with it.

Rattle used Cooke II, with some personal percussion revisions, as I recall, for his Bournemouth recordings, and Cooke III for his Berlin version. I think, in any event, that this was the case.

Sort of sounds like Cooke ought to have gotten out a bit more, eh?
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: AnthonyAthletic on June 19, 2007, 08:50:48 AM
Sort of sounds like Cooke ought to have gotten out a bit more, eh?

Guess it paid well Karl  ;D

Now we just need a full lecture to describe what the others did differently, what they amended.  Wonder if Zander fancies knocking something up for me  ;D
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: PerfectWagnerite on June 19, 2007, 08:52:43 AM
Guess it paid well Karl  ;D

Now we just need a full lecture to describe what the others did differently, what they amended.  Wonder if Zander fancies knocking something up for me  ;D

You like Zander? His sing-song voice annoys the hell out of me.
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: PSmith08 on June 19, 2007, 08:56:19 AM
With which orchestra was this?

Chicago Symphony Orchestra, if I recall correctly. Martinon was music director there from '63-'68, following Fritz Reiner and preceding Georg Solti.

Sort of sounds like Cooke ought to have gotten out a bit more, eh?

He was a musicologist, but - yes - he probably should have gotten a hobby other than attempting to idiomatically orchestrate Gustav Mahler's four-stave notation for the last half of his last symphony.
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: karlhenning on June 19, 2007, 08:58:11 AM
You like Zander? His sing-song voice annoys the hell out of me.

He's a good speaker, and fairly enjoyable to listen to, live.  I wouldn't listen to him in recorded commentary, though.
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: PerfectWagnerite on June 19, 2007, 08:58:52 AM
So Cooke likes to complete Mahler's 10th. Surely nobody can fault him for that right? There are other people with weirder hobbies like analyzer bug feces.
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: karlhenning on June 19, 2007, 09:05:49 AM
Exceeds Low Expectations
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: karlhenning on June 19, 2007, 09:06:24 AM
Seriously, lads, thank you for the fascinating info viz. Cooke.
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: AnthonyAthletic on June 19, 2007, 09:06:40 AM
You like Zander? His sing-song voice annoys the hell out of me.

Yes, I don't mind his Mahler freebie 'lectures'.  Quite informative and entertaining.

Gerhard Schwarz, once of my local RLPO was excellent at pre concert talks which he used to give in Liverpool on Sundays before performing a couple of major works for £5 a concert.

Used to enjoy getting out of the house for a good Sunday session with Mr Schwarz, it wasn't just Tony & Gerhard, a thousand other people were there as well, hope I wasn't giving the impression that GS did his lectures just for me  ;D
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: PSmith08 on June 19, 2007, 09:14:07 AM
So Cooke likes to complete Mahler's 10th. Surely nobody can fault him for that right? There are other people with weirder hobbies like analyzer bug feces.

Eh. My gripe is that the Cooke I performing version was pretty solid and had Frau Mahler's approval. He then continued to revise and "correct," with no successive version having the freshness and je ne sais quoi of the original. Maybe, its originality? ( ;))

Seriously, lads, thank you for the fascinating info viz. Cooke.

Who doesn't love technical textual history?
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: MishaK on June 19, 2007, 09:28:12 AM
Chicago Symphony Orchestra, if I recall correctly. Martinon was music director there from '63-'68, following Fritz Reiner and preceding Georg Solti.

That's correct. Was this a commercial recording or something issued "from the archives" by the CSO, along the lines of the Martinon Mahler 3?
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: PSmith08 on June 19, 2007, 09:36:31 AM
That's correct. Was this a commercial recording or something issued "from the archives" by the CSO, along the lines of the Martinon Mahler 3?

It was a CSO release, I think.
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: knight66 on June 19, 2007, 09:48:06 AM
Guys, Thanks very much for the info. I have never quite come to terms with the 10th, not an issue with it being inauthentic in any way. I will get to grips with it,I just so far have not connected well with it.

Mike
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: PSmith08 on June 19, 2007, 10:17:05 AM
Guys, Thanks very much for the info. I have never quite come to terms with the 10th, not an issue with it being inauthentic in any way. I will get to grips with it,I just so far have not connected well with it.

Mike

Sure thing. I should say that, much as I like the Ormandy M10, I haven't come to grips with the symphony itself. It's sort of like, relative to his oeuvre, like walking down a road, cresting a hill, and seeing something entirely unexpected.
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: knight66 on June 19, 2007, 10:36:28 AM
Yes; perhaps I would have been more open with it had I been told it was by someone influenced by Mahler. Somehow the 9th feels so much like the period at the end of a long book, I find it difficult to get my head round basically a resurrection.

Mike
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: Steve on June 19, 2007, 10:39:24 AM
Sure thing. I should say that, much as I like the Ormandy M10, I haven't come to grips with the symphony itself. It's sort of like, relative to his oeuvre, like walking down a road, cresting a hill, and seeing something entirely unexpected.

I experience the same feeling while listening to his 9th. That final movement is anything but expected.  :)
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: karlhenning on June 19, 2007, 10:54:24 AM
Eh. My gripe is that the Cooke I performing version was pretty solid and had Frau Mahler's approval. He then continued to revise and "correct," with no successive version having the freshness and je ne sais quoi of the original. Maybe, its originality? ( ;))

Yes. II and III must have been partly exercises in self-loathing  ;D

Quote
Who doesn't love technical textual history?

In moderation, one of life's great pleasures, indeed  0:)
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: PSmith08 on June 19, 2007, 10:58:22 AM
Yes; perhaps I would have been more open with it had I been told it was by someone influenced by Mahler. Somehow the 9th feels so much like the period at the end of a long book, I find it difficult to get my head round basically a resurrection.

Mike

It's a transitional work, and it would have been interesting to see where Mahler was going with his style, had he not died. As it is, I am just used to the progression from Das klagende Lied through the 1st and the Wunderhorn symphonies to the middle period and, then, the 8th and 9th. The 10th seems like Mahler was opening a new door, beyond even the 7th and 9th, but it's a door I just don't fully understand - beyond its power and beauty, to mix my metaphors.

Yes. II and III must have been partly exercises in self-loathing  ;D

I was going to say masochism, but self-loathing works, too.

Quote
In moderation, one of life's great pleasures, indeed  0:)


Hey, there's nothing better than sorting out which version came first and which version incorporated which revision.
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: Papy Oli on June 19, 2007, 11:16:54 AM
Thank you everyone for your input on my "list" ! that's me now heading back to the drawing board to fine tune it, which was no less that what i was expecting when i posted my query ... glad i said it wasn't a definitive list ;D




Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: Papy Oli on June 19, 2007, 11:33:59 AM

The Horenstein New Philharmonia 7th must be a figment of your imagination. Maybe you meant Klemperer?


Bonjour Andre,

for once, not my imagination in this case, i read that here :

http://turing.cs.camosun.bc.ca:8080/Mahler/Symphony7 (http://turing.cs.camosun.bc.ca:8080/Mahler/Symphony7)

but hey, what do I know ? that's why i asked here  ;)

Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: Papy Oli on June 19, 2007, 01:14:48 PM
right, i have revamped the list as below and ordered some of it too !!  ;D

M1 - Kubelik (on order)
M2 - sticking with my Klemperer for now (Chailly/concertgebouw in basket for later)
M3 - Haitink/concertgebouw (pricey - in basket for later)
M4 - Reiner/Chicago (cheap but off stock, so basket for later)
M5 - sticking with my Tennstedt for now (Bernsstein/VPO in basket for later)
M6 - Szell/Cleveland (cheap but off stock, so basket for later)
M7 - Barenboim/Staatskapelle (pricey, basket for later)
M8 - Sticking with my Solti for now
M9 - Karajan Live/DG (on order, used)
M10 - Ormandy (on order)

I'll keep the lieder for later on as well !... had to control the budget a bit !!  :-\

I ordered Steinberg's book though, "The Symphony : A listener's guide"...will be handy reading for those, and the Bruckner's sibelius's etc... !!  :)

thanks again for your comments and recommendations. I'll keep you posted  ;)
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: Lilas Pastia on June 19, 2007, 02:04:48 PM
Bonjour Andre,

for once, not my imagination in this case, i read that here :

http://turing.cs.camosun.bc.ca:8080/Mahler/Symphony7 (http://turing.cs.camosun.bc.ca:8080/Mahler/Symphony7)

but hey, what do I know ? that's why i asked here  ;)



I stand corrected :-[. Sorry for that. I had no idea this had ever existed. Indeed I'm rather surprised to learn that Horenstein had any interest in this, maybe the most 'specialized' Mahler symphony.

OK, now, what does it sound like?  ;D
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: Drasko on June 19, 2007, 02:15:51 PM
I stand corrected :-[. Sorry for that. I had no idea this had ever existed. Indeed I'm rather surprised to learn that Horenstein had any interest in this, maybe the most 'specialized' Mahler symphony.

OK, now, what does it sound like?  ;D

According to Hurwitz (http://www.classicstoday.com/review.asp?ReviewNum=2304)

According to Duggan (http://www.musicweb-international.com/classrev/2000/nov00/Mahler7Horenstein.htm)
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: Sergeant Rock on June 19, 2007, 02:16:18 PM
Sort of sounds like Cooke ought to have gotten out a bit more, eh?


One reason Cooke continued to work on the orchestration is because many critics complained his original didn't sound enough like Mahler. And today critics do seem to prefer the revision's fuller, more idiomatic sound. PSmith and I are probably in the minority here. The reason I like Cooke I is because it doesn't pretend to be anything more than a performing edition of the existing original material. There's just enough done to Mahler's extant score to make it presentable in concert...to let us hear the "idea" of this work and get a feel of where Mahler was heading. (The Ninth wasn't the end. Mahler didn't think it was the end.) I think it's presumptuous to go beyond what Cooke did originally (it's second guessing Mahler). And I think it's simply more poignant hearing this skeleton.

Sarge
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: Papy Oli on June 19, 2007, 02:22:47 PM
I stand corrected :-[. Sorry for that. I had no idea this had ever existed. Indeed I'm rather surprised to learn that Horenstein had any interest in this, maybe the most 'specialized' Mahler symphony.

OK, now, what does it sound like?  ;D

no worries at all  :)...that was just one info i picked as i browsed around for the mahler symphonies..that site seemed overly keen on horenstein for whatever reason...haven't listened to him yet, and it has moved down the "to buy" list, now the barenboim is on favorite for the 7th...so it will be while yet ;)

Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: Papy Oli on June 19, 2007, 02:26:58 PM
According to Hurwitz (http://www.classicstoday.com/review.asp?ReviewNum=2304)

According to Duggan (http://www.musicweb-international.com/classrev/2000/nov00/Mahler7Horenstein.htm)

One's mileage may vary....  :)
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: Sergeant Rock on June 19, 2007, 02:33:55 PM
that site seemed overly keen on horenstein for whatever reason...

Yes, be careful. Horenstein, much like Celibidache, has become a cult figure. That isn't the conductors' fault but the result of overly zealous fans. I'm one of them  ;D  But I'm hesitant about recommending their recordings to the uninitiated.

Sarge 
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: PerfectWagnerite on June 19, 2007, 03:11:23 PM
The Horenstein M3 is probably THE single most overrated recording ever. Is it good? Parts of it. But let's face the facts 1) terrible sound, sonic picture moves all over the place. Sounds like the balance engineer was on morphine half the time 2) uninspired lower strings, especially weak basses 3)Little sense overall of the rubato that is so important in Mahler's music.

I guess in Sarge's case if you grow up with it you can live with it. But I didn't grow up with it therefore I don't have to cut it any slack.

Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: karlhenning on June 19, 2007, 03:12:54 PM

One reason Cooke continued to work on the orchestration is because many critics complained his original didn't sound enough like Mahler.

I'm sure that was part of the complaint levied against him, Sarge . . . but the complainers flatter themselves that they know how Mahler would have sounded, in his tenth symphony.  Which no one but Mahler would be in a position to know.

Imagine that Beethoven wrote only his symphonies nos. one through eight.  Imagine that he just left piano score for part of the ninth.  Imagine that the ninth as in fact we know it, was not finished by Beethoven, but an attempt by some (admittedly, unusually talented) musicologist.  They'd cry over how it doesn't sound like the Beethoven symphonies they already know . . . and of course, they'd be right.

You and Patrick have the right idea.  No one in the world knows how Mahler would have made his tenth sound;  so Cooke had no need to adjust his original completion, at least out of that consideration.
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: Sergeant Rock on June 19, 2007, 03:19:10 PM
The Horenstein M3 is probably THE single most overrated recording ever. Is it good? Parts of it. But let's face the facts 1) terrible sound, sonic picture moves all over the place. Sounds like the balance engineer was on morphine half the time 2) uninspired lower strings, especially weak basses 3)Little sense overall of the rubato that is so important in Mahler's music.

Yes, those are some of the negative things about the recording and performance. But you didn't list the positive, and there are positive, even unique things about it...which is what I focus on when I listen to it. But as I said, I don't recommend everything I personally love, and I seldom proselytize. I'm content to enjoy it by my lonesome  ;D

Sarge
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: Sergeant Rock on June 19, 2007, 03:21:30 PM
I'm GMG's Newest Veteran


I need to get a life  ;D

Sarge
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: Sergeant Rock on June 19, 2007, 03:25:24 PM
I'm sure that was part of the complaint levied against him, Sarge . . . but the complainers flatter themselves that they know how Mahler would have sounded, in his tenth symphony.  Which no one but Mahler would be in a position to know.

Exactly.

Sarge
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: PSmith08 on June 19, 2007, 03:39:17 PM

One reason Cooke continued to work on the orchestration is because many critics complained his original didn't sound enough like Mahler. And today critics do seem to prefer the revision's fuller, more idiomatic sound. PSmith and I are probably in the minority here. The reason I like Cooke I is because it doesn't pretend to be anything more than a performing edition of the existing original material. There's just enough done to Mahler's extant score to make it presentable in concert...to let us hear the "idea" of this work and get a feel of where Mahler was heading. (The Ninth wasn't the end. Mahler didn't think it was the end.) I think it's presumptuous to go beyond what Cooke did originally (it's second guessing Mahler). And I think it's simply more poignant hearing this skeleton.

Sarge

I guess part of my reasoning, other than the fact that Cooke got it as right as he could on the first go, is that Mahler was making near-paradigm shifts in style pretty rapidly in his later symphonies. From the 5th to the 7th, there is a rapid and clear progression of style and sensibility. The 8th, as much as I sort of like it, is a train-wreck with the first half being Bach on steroids and the second half being an echt-Wagnerian oratorio. Then, out of nowhere, but - seemingly - out of every part of his oeuvre (stretching back to the 1st in some cases), come Das Lied and the 9th. The 10th, from what Mahler himself "finished" (i.e., orchestrated), was a continuation of the new direction of the 9th, but what did he really intend? Only Gustav Mahler knew. Cooke's first performing version, as the good Sergeant pointed out, is a skeleton. There's more Mahler there than in later versions, and that's what's important to me.
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: Bonehelm on June 19, 2007, 03:53:12 PM
Does anybody know how many musicians are involved in the recording of Chailly/RCO's M8?
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: Sergeant Rock on June 19, 2007, 04:13:41 PM
Does anybody know how many musicians are involved in the recording of Chailly/RCO's M8?

The normal amount...exactly one thousand  ;D

Sarge
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: Sergeant Rock on June 19, 2007, 04:18:51 PM
Does anybody know how many musicians are involved in the recording of Chailly/RCO's M8?

I just checked the booklet. It doesn't say. Sorry.

Sarge
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: Bonehelm on June 19, 2007, 04:27:06 PM
I just checked the booklet. It doesn't say. Sorry.

Sarge

That's alright, thanks for your effort anyway. Looks like I'll have to grab the DVD version, pause the screen and count then.  :D
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: Sergeant Rock on June 19, 2007, 04:30:28 PM
The 8th, as much as I sort of like it, is a train-wreck with the first half being Bach on steroids and the second half being an echt-Wagnerian oratorio.

;D :D ;D

I like to think of Part II as the opera Mahler never wrote. By the way, I love the 8th. I have no hesitations or doubts. It makes me wish he would have lived long enough to complete the Tenth and to compose one great opera...like Beethoven. In my alternative universe, he would have spent his declining years writing marvelous chamber music, piano quartets, string quintets and sextets.  8)

Sarge
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: Sergeant Rock on June 19, 2007, 04:34:06 PM
That's alright, thanks for your effort anyway. Looks like I'll have to grab the DVD version, pause the screen and count then.  :D

 ;D

I thought about counting when I was at the Philharmonie in Berlin last April. I estimated instead. 125 orchestra, 8 soloists, 400 in the three choirs maybe. Far less than a thousand anyway. False advertising. I should have demanded my money back  ;D

Sarge
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: PSmith08 on June 19, 2007, 04:43:57 PM
;D :D ;D

I like to think of Part II as the opera Mahler never wrote. By the way, I love the 8th. I have no hesitations or doubts. It makes me wish he would have lived long enough to complete the Tenth and to compose one great opera...like Beethoven. In my alternative universe, he would have spent his declining years writing marvelous chamber music, piano quartets, string quintets and sextets.  8)

Sarge

For whatever reason, I prefer Das Lied to the 8th. I suppose there are just two kinds of people in the world... ;)

Ah, if Mahler had lived twenty - even thirty - more years. The possibilities, and the changes to the face of modern music. Also, there would have been time to get him to do some acoustic recordings, at the very least. The Welte-Mignon rolls are nice, but actually hearing Mahler conduct his own works? I think that would pretty well settle any modern interpretative debates.
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: PerfectWagnerite on June 20, 2007, 05:03:37 AM
The Welte-Mignon rolls are nice, but actually hearing Mahler conduct his own works? I think that would pretty well settle any modern interpretative debates.

I think in one of those Zander/Mahler discussion discs (might be the one for the 5th symphony) there is a little excerpt of Mahler playing a piano reduction of the opening movement. I was shocked at how GOOD the sound quality is, better than the Schnabel Beethoven Sonatas recorded some a quarter of a century later.
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: karlhenning on June 20, 2007, 05:09:52 AM
For whatever reason, I prefer Das Lied to the 8th.

Me, too.
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: Brewski on June 20, 2007, 05:11:36 AM
Does anybody know how many musicians are involved in the recording of Chailly/RCO's M8?

I was at a few of the live performances from which this recording was made, and there appeared to be roughly 500 people total (similar to Sarge's estimate in the Berlin Philharmonie). 

No performance I've seen so far uses anything close to 1,000 people, but I'm still hoping... ;D

--Bruce
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: Haffner on June 20, 2007, 05:19:19 AM
Me, too.



Moi aussi!
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: PSmith08 on June 20, 2007, 06:22:05 AM
I think in one of those Zander/Mahler discussion discs (might be the one for the 5th symphony) there is a little excerpt of Mahler playing a piano reduction of the opening movement. I was shocked at how GOOD the sound quality is, better than the Schnabel Beethoven Sonatas recorded some a quarter of a century later.

The sound quality is that good because it's modern sound, through and through. The Welte-Mignon machine, unlike conventional piano rolls, recorded (IIRC) the note, its duration, and the dynamics using ink marks, which were then transferred into holes that could be read by the Vorsetzer unit and played on an ordinary piano by means of felt-tipped rods. Despite having read the descriptions on the mighty Interweb numerous times, I still have no clue how it worked. However, Mahler cut four rolls for the Welte-Mignon people on 9th November 1905, which the Kaplan Foundation found, played on a machine, and recorded. So, in one sense, the performances are modern and Mahler had been dead for probably eighty years, but in another sense, it's as though Mahler himself is still in the room.

Me, too.

I'm glad to know I'm not out here on my own for this one.
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: PerfectWagnerite on June 20, 2007, 06:36:31 AM
The sound quality is that good because it's modern sound, through and through. The Welte-Mignon machine, unlike conventional piano rolls, recorded (IIRC) the note, its duration, and the dynamics using ink marks, which were then transferred into holes that could be read by the Vorsetzer unit and played on an ordinary piano by means of felt-tipped rods. Despite having read the descriptions on the mighty Interweb numerous times, I still have no clue how it worked. However, Mahler cut four rolls for the Welte-Mignon people on 9th November 1905, which the Kaplan Foundation found, played on a machine, and recorded. So, in one sense, the performances are modern and Mahler had been dead for probably eighty years, but in another sense, it's as though Mahler himself is still in the room.

I'm glad to know I'm not out here on my own for this one.

Yeah, I was googling it and found that out. Thanks !
Mahler playing Mahler in digital stereo, how nice.
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: PSmith08 on June 20, 2007, 06:41:43 AM
Yeah, I was googling it and found that out. Thanks !
Mahler playing Mahler in digital stereo, how nice.

It doesn't get much better than that, unless Wagner had an angelic singing voice, which I sort of doubt.  ;D
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: PerfectWagnerite on June 20, 2007, 06:46:02 AM
It doesn't get much better than that, unless Wagner had an angelic singing voice, which I sort of doubt.  ;D

They can't record VOICES on that those rolls right?

Zander doesn't tell you that details either, he just says "Mahler on piano roll". What a liar !
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: PSmith08 on June 20, 2007, 07:44:04 AM
They can't record VOICES on that those rolls right?

Nope. Just note, duration, and dynamics. (AFAIK)

Quote
Zander doesn't tell you that details either, he just says "Mahler on piano roll". What a liar !

He's technically correct, but he could be a little more specific, as it's a bit of a marvel to have Mahler on any recorded medium - piano roll, wax cylinder, or what-have-you. In any event, no piano roll is a "live" recording, all mechanical all the time, as live recordings didn't come about until the cylinder days - later than the rolls.
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: mahlertitan on June 20, 2007, 09:34:26 AM
I have a recording of those piano rolls, they are interesting, but unfortunately they only represent very few pieces.
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: Sergeant Rock on June 20, 2007, 12:21:21 PM
I'm glad to know I'm not out here on my own for this one.

No, it's me who's in the minority here. The 8th is the least favored symphony. Das Lied is far more popular. I've even heard diehard Mahlerites dis the 8th. I don't get it. The first part is pure ecstasy...the second part has some of the most sublime music I've ever heard. When I heard it live the first time, I couldn't believe how quickly it flew by. But then, it's nothing more than a quick stroll around the block compared to Parsifal. ;D

Sarge
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: Brewski on June 20, 2007, 12:32:24 PM
No, it's me who's in the minority here. The 8th is the least favored symphony. Das Lied is far more popular. I've even heard diehard Mahlerites dis the 8th. I don't get it. The first part is pure ecstasy...the second part has some of the most sublime music I've ever heard. When I heard it live the first time, I couldn't believe how quickly it flew by. But then, it's nothing more than a quick stroll around the block compared to Parsifal. ;D

Sarge

I totally agree, and can't think of any better words than "ecstasy" and "sublime."  It has always puzzled me why many Mahler admirers don't seem to like it at all, despite loving all the other symphonies.

--Bruce
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: PSmith08 on June 20, 2007, 12:46:17 PM
No, it's me who's in the minority here. The 8th is the least favored symphony. Das Lied is far more popular. I've even heard diehard Mahlerites dis the 8th. I don't get it. The first part is pure ecstasy...the second part has some of the most sublime music I've ever heard. When I heard it live the first time, I couldn't believe how quickly it flew by. But then, it's nothing more than a quick stroll around the block compared to Parsifal. ;D

Sarge

I'd agree with your judgments about the first and second parts. The "Faust-cantata," which seems to me the most felicitous name for the second half, does it for me more than the first half, which I find a bit much - except for "Gloria Patri Domino" with the kids. "Blicket auf" is one of the few pieces of music (i.e., <5-6) that can "get" me; however, I still seem to prefer Das Lied. I don't know why.

I totally agree, and can't think of any better words than "ecstasy" and "sublime."  It has always puzzled me why many Mahler admirers don't seem to like it at all, despite loving all the other symphonies.

--Bruce

It's not particularly Mahlerian? I don't know that, nor do I think that there is one echt-Mahlerian symphonic idiom, but I do think the 8th is a pretty major departure from the 5-6-7 style and not really a prefiguration of the 9th-10th style. In fact, I tend to think of Das Lied being a better bridge than the 8th, stylistically speaking. The unique place the 8th holds in Mahler's works puts it in an awkward situation. I can't think of another, similarly massive, departure and innovation - which is what the 8th surely was, in its own way.
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: Brewski on June 20, 2007, 12:48:33 PM
It's not particularly Mahlerian? I don't know that, nor do I think that there is one echt-Mahlerian symphonic idiom, but I do think the 8th is a pretty major departure from the 5-6-7 style and not really a prefiguration of the 9th-10th style.

I would agree with you here.  It's almost as if he took "time out" to try something completely different. 

--Bruce

Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: Sergeant Rock on June 20, 2007, 12:50:33 PM
I listened to four Resurrections this afternoon: Bernstein LSO, Bernstein NYPhil (DG), Walter and my new Slatkin. I promised a review this evening but Mrs. Rock and I took a long drive deep into the Pfalz for dinner. We ate well, drank well, and now I'm really tired. Review of the Slatkin tomorrow then, when I'm fresher. Food review in the Diner.

Sarge
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: Brewski on June 20, 2007, 12:53:04 PM
I listened to four Resurrections  this afternoon: Bernstein LSO, Bernstein NYPhil (DG), Walter and my new Slatkin.

 :o

Will definitely look forward to your survivor's comments on those.  And with that, I bid you all adieu until tomorrow.

--Bruce
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: PSmith08 on June 20, 2007, 01:11:15 PM
I listened to four Resurrections this afternoon: Bernstein LSO, Bernstein NYPhil (DG), Walter and my new Slatkin. I promised a review this evening but Mrs. Rock and I took a long drive deep into the Pfalz for dinner. We ate well, drank well, and now I'm really tired. Review of the Slatkin tomorrow then, when I'm fresher. Food review in the Diner.

Sarge

Good gravy. You deserve a good meal for that sort of effort. I'll be interested to hear your Slatkin review, especially compared to the two Bernstein sets.
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: Bonehelm on June 20, 2007, 04:27:31 PM
I listened to four Resurrections this afternoon: Bernstein LSO, Bernstein NYPhil (DG), Walter and my new Slatkin. I promised a review this evening but Mrs. Rock and I took a long drive deep into the Pfalz for dinner. We ate well, drank well, and now I'm really tired. Review of the Slatkin tomorrow then, when I'm fresher. Food review in the Diner.

Sarge

Holy crap...that's like eating 4 super-sized double big mac meals in one sitting...
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: not edward on June 20, 2007, 05:55:05 PM
Anyone here heard the BBC Legends Mahler 9 under Bruno Maderna? I notice a lot of people on rmcr are putting it near the top of their lists.
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: PSmith08 on June 20, 2007, 06:51:23 PM
Anyone here heard the BBC Legends Mahler 9 under Bruno Maderna? I notice a lot of people on rmcr are putting it near the top of their lists.

Let me put the Maderna recording in these terms: it is on the short list for my favorite Mahler 9th. I tend to prefer Klemperer, as there is something about his dry-eyed, granitic approach to the M9; however, the Maderna - with its surfeit of emotion (to the point of being manic) and fluid tempi - is endearing. I might say that Klemperer represents a performance in control and emotionally solid as a rock, while Maderna represents a performance on the edge. Not at all what one would expect from a Darmstadt composer, responsible for Quadrivium.
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: karlhenning on June 22, 2007, 02:38:32 AM
I totally agree, and can't think of any better words than "ecstasy" and "sublime."  It has always puzzled me why many Mahler admirers don't seem to like it at all, despite loving all the other symphonies.

FWIW, Bruce (& Sarge) . . . Part I gets so much "in the way" for me, that it was years before I even bothered listening to Part II.  Now, I freely own, Part II justifies all the glowing adjectives anyone could hope to heap upon Mahler.  But (and this is one composer's particular view, of course, and YMMV) Part I strikes me too bluntly as abuse of the text . . . I think of the word which Shostakovich wrily applied to the finale of his Fourth, as he was 'explaining' why he had withdrawn it: Grandiosomania.
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: karlhenning on June 22, 2007, 02:39:38 AM
I would agree with you here.  It's almost as if he took "time out" to try something completely different. 

In principle, nothing wrong with that, to be sure, Bruce :-)
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: karlhenning on June 22, 2007, 02:41:12 AM
Anyone here heard the BBC Legends Mahler 9 under Bruno Maderna? I notice a lot of people on rmcr are putting it near the top of their lists.

Isn't that interesting?  Of course, Webern, too was a forward-thinking composer who conducted Mahler with simpatico insight . . . .
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: Bogey on June 25, 2007, 12:33:03 PM
Has anyone caught this on PBS yet?:

(http://qpbs.imageg.net/graphics/product_images/pPBS3-3640388dt.jpg)

http://www.shoppbs.org/sm-pbs-a-wayfarers-journey-listening-to-mahler-dvd--pi-2666295.html
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: Bonehelm on June 25, 2007, 01:07:29 PM
Has anyone caught this on PBS yet?:

(http://qpbs.imageg.net/graphics/product_images/pPBS3-3640388dt.jpg)

http://www.shoppbs.org/sm-pbs-a-wayfarers-journey-listening-to-mahler-dvd--pi-2666295.html


Christoph Esenbach as commentary...interesting.
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: Greta on June 25, 2007, 05:39:01 PM
It's really quite good. Eschenbach is a sensitive Mahlerian and sympathetic to the deep feelings expressed in Mahler's writing. It has plenty of nice clips of him conducting Mahler with the Curtis Institute Orchestra and Philadelphia Orchestra, and as accompanist for selected lieder. I found it very moving when he spoke about his difficult childhood as a war orphan, and how only music brought him out of this terrible time. It also features Richard Dreyfuss as the Voice of Mahler, reading passages from Mahler's letters. Recommended. :)

A clip, of the Adagietto-
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=H3Yyaqqd9gg
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: Bonehelm on June 25, 2007, 06:00:53 PM
It's really quite good. Eschenbach is a sensitive Mahlerian and sympathetic to the deep feelings expressed in Mahler's writing. It has plenty of nice clips of him conducting Mahler with the Curtis Institute Orchestra and Philadelphia Orchestra, and as accompanist for selected lieder. I found it very moving when he spoke about his difficult childhood as a war orphan, and how only music brought him out of this terrible time. It also features Richard Dreyfuss as the Voice of Mahler, reading passages from Mahler's letters. Recommended. :)

A clip, of the Adagietto-
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=H3Yyaqqd9gg


Thanks for the link, Greta.   :)
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: greg on June 30, 2007, 12:51:21 PM
I just got a laugh! I got Karajan's live 9th on DG and looked at the track titles, and it actually says for some sections "Horns", "Brass", "Clarinets"...I guess because those smaller sections don't have specific tempo names. How funny! Those are about as good as I do for the signposts in my head when I'm listening myself. :D 

Wow, the 9th is absolutely transcendent. And it's really forward looking to the modern era, isn't it? Is this the one Schoenberg admired the most? I can definitely see why.

The 1st mvmt. shares some things in common with the 4th's Adagio and a little with the 5th's Adagietto, but also is interspersed with moments of sweeping chaos where he dances at the very edge of tonality. That thick mesh of polytonal writing where all the lines are moving at once, after the first big cries (Allegro risoluto), and those spooky brass clusters following. Incredible. This REALLY makes me wonder what he would've written if he'd not died young. I feel like studying this score is a black hole you could fall into. Such extremely complex and sophisticated writing!

I had to come back to edit this to say, it's really so affecting the way it vacillates between hope and despair, with pure bewilderment thrown in between. Almost painful at times. More than in any I feel here he's stuck in the nebulous place between two worlds, looking fondly back, despairing at going, and contemplating the beyond he's going to with this awed wonder and breathless confused mystery, (in the Wie von anfang and Lento!) I keep coming back in this mvmt. to those themes in his 4th and 5th Adagios, then he was gazing up at Heaven, but now it's this alternately scary, breathtaking beautiful reality. And when you consider the links between "I Am Lost to the World" and the 5th Adagietto, and the way he twists and distorts that theme in the middle of the Wie von anfang. I feel he's journeying down the tunnel towards the light, torn and unsure, and finally he comes to terms with it in the final minutes, the angels take him by the hand and say, "It's okay." The flute and violin solos...the angels' comforting voices...

And this is just the first movement!  :o I listened to this symphony only once before and it was just overwhelming, I knew I needed time, a lot of time, to come back to it, and finally here I am.

I haven't read this thread in awhile, but I like this post. The 9th being my favorite musical work of all time...
if it wasn't answered yet, it was Berg who described the opening movement as "the most glorious thing he ever wrote" (i've only read the line like a million times, lol)

yeah, i love that description of Mahler's music, especially stuff like the 9th. 'Love and pain' in the same breath, with a little bit of reflection and chaos, transcendence and banality all mixed together. It's like a yin yang  :D.
It's the way he hangs on to those major seconds and minor 3rds on the downbeat while remaining in a major context, just listen to the opening melody..... no other composer does this sort of stuff all the time, which is what makes him unique and why he's my favorite.

I read once that the whole 'love and pain' association came from the fact that his mother was cripple or kinda cripple, i can't remember. And also, the 9th being written as a farewell to the world by someone who enjoyed living (the love part) but has to die soon (the pain part) fits in, too. I just checked out a book today where I read the same exact idea, and i haven't thought of it before.

And yeah, the opening movement is so so so complex that's it's taken me a long time just to understand a lot of it. The recap, for example, doesn't exist, at least if you define a recap a certain, traditional way. As they were saying on the other thread, both the first and last movements don't have recaps but more like an exposition-development form. And the development has new material on top of that, i'm still trying to make sense of it...  8)
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: mahlertitan on June 30, 2007, 02:07:31 PM
anyone got the DVD?
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: from the new world on July 02, 2007, 10:57:35 AM
And yeah, the opening movement is so so so complex that's it's taken me a long time just to understand a lot of it. The recap, for example, doesn't exist, at least if you define a recap a certain, traditional way. As they were saying on the other thread, both the first and last movements don't have recaps but more like an exposition-development form. And the development has new material on top of that, i'm still trying to make sense of it...  8)

The first movement does have a recapitulation, but it has to depend on what you define as the exposition. If the exposition includes the second climax, then there only seems half a recap, before the horn and flute solo section. However, if you shorten the exposition to the two main exposition themes leading to the first climax, then consider a modified (heavily) repeat (as in the opening of the seventh), then the recap fits in quite well.
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: Bonehelm on July 02, 2007, 07:04:19 PM
I just listened to Solti/CSO's M1 and I've gotta say it's very good, maybe the second best right behind the Kubelik version.
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: techniquest on July 02, 2007, 09:47:25 PM
Quote
No performance I've seen so far uses anything close to 1,000 people, but I'm still hoping...

The Sir Simon Rattle performance at the 2002 Proms at the Royal Albert Hall, London on August 13th 2002 had around 800 performers.
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: Bonehelm on July 03, 2007, 09:28:59 AM
The Sir Simon Rattle performance at the 2002 Proms at the Royal Albert Hall, London on August 13th 2002 had around 800 performers.

Plenty of which were children/teens.
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: Florestan on July 04, 2007, 03:03:47 AM
A very interesting and detailed discussion of Mahler's Symphonies (the .pdf file below).
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: greg on July 04, 2007, 05:23:51 AM
A very interesting and detailed discussion of Mahler's Symphonies (the .pdf file below).
nice......
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: greg on July 04, 2007, 05:29:01 AM
The first movement does have a recapitulation, but it has to depend on what you define as the exposition. If the exposition includes the second climax, then there only seems half a recap, before the horn and flute solo section. However, if you shorten the exposition to the two main exposition themes leading to the first climax, then consider a modified (heavily) repeat (as in the opening of the seventh), then the recap fits in quite well.
yep, i guess it's just how you choose to define what ends where.
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: Bonehelm on July 10, 2007, 10:02:01 PM
Anyone find it unusual that the Titan symphony amazingly well made for the composer's first attempt at the genre? I particularly like the final movement, the "outbursts of despair" really got me.
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: Sergeant Rock on July 11, 2007, 02:53:50 AM
Anyone find it unusual that the Titan symphony amazingly well made for the composer's first attempt at the genre? I particularly like the final movement, the "outbursts of despair" really got me.

It is an amazing symphony but it wasn't his first attempt. As a student at the conservatory he wrote a symphony for a competition. There was a second symphony in A minor. Another symphony he worked on prior to his official First was called the Nordische Symphonie. In the library of Mahler's close friend and former mistress, the Baroness von Weber, Marion Mathilde, there were manuscripts of four early symphonies. There is anecdotal evidence that Mengelberg saw them and even played them on the piano some twenty years after Mahler's death. They were probably destroyed during the bombing of Dresden in 1944. Fire consumed most of the library.

Sarge
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: M forever on July 11, 2007, 06:02:02 AM
In the library of Mahler's close friend and former mistress, the Baroness von Weber, Marion Mathilde, there were manuscripts of four early symphonies. There is anecdotal evidence that Mengelberg saw them and even played them on the piano some twenty years after Mahler's death. They were probably destroyed during the bombing of Dresden in 1944. Fire consumed most of the library.

Wow, I didn't know that. But the bombing of Dresden was in 1945. I have been waiting days to get back at you for proving me wrong about the Bohemia thing. Finally, my chance came. So there!
 ;D


A very interesting and detailed discussion of Mahler's Symphonies (the .pdf file below).

I am devastated that that nonsense in the first paragraph was written by de la Grange, *of all people*.
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: karlhenning on July 11, 2007, 06:08:05 AM
Anyone find it unusual that the Titan symphony amazingly well made for the composer's first attempt at the genre?

Not remarkably unusual, partly because ten other composers wrote very well made symphonies for their first, partly because Gustav was almost 30 when he finished writing his First.
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: Bonehelm on July 11, 2007, 10:28:25 AM
Very informative comments, Sarge and karl.  :)
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: mahlertitan on July 12, 2007, 08:58:03 AM
It's remarkable indeed, but i think the composer with the most impressive "First" has to be Shostakovich.
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: MishaK on July 12, 2007, 09:30:14 AM
It's remarkable indeed, but i think the composer with the most impressive "First" has to be Shostakovich.

I'd still vote for Brahms. Of course he took his bloody time with it and canned a lot of earlier attempts.
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: Sergeant Rock on July 12, 2007, 02:47:03 PM
Wow, I didn't know that. But the bombing of Dresden was in 1945. I have been waiting days to get back at you for proving me wrong about the Bohemia thing. Finally, my chance came. So there!
 ;D

Son of a bitch...(to quote Cartman). I can't believe I wrote '44. Would you believe typo?...No? How about brain fart? No?... Damn. You got me then.

Sarge
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: Papy Oli on July 21, 2007, 10:33:47 AM
I posted the question below in the "What are you listening to" thread earlier this week, but it got quickly swallowed up and didn't get a reply to. i'll have another go here  ;D

I was listening at the time to "Das Klagende Lied" on the Haitink/concertgebouw/Philips CD (with the Mahler 3). At 2'12 off the 4th "movement" (5th track off the 2nd CD - "Von Hohen Felsen..."), the sound of the brass section suddendly sounds totally muffled, like played from very far away, then after a while the singers are back in front, with the orchestra still muffled, then at 3'15 or so, the orchestra comes back to "normal" level...   ??? I noticed that happened also on Track 7 ("Ach Spielmann...")

Could someone who owns that CD shed some light on this please ? is it a recording default ? or an actual wanted effect ?

Thank you.

 :)

Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: Mahlered on July 22, 2007, 08:31:32 AM
Das klagende Lied has parts specifically written for offstage wind band, to give the impression of distance, so the weird sounds on your recording are deliberate in principle. They're not supposed to be unclear, so that may be an issue with the recording, but the distant and muted aspect should be there.
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: Papy Oli on July 22, 2007, 09:11:08 AM
Das klagende Lied has parts specifically written for offstage wind band, to give the impression of distance, so the weird sounds on your recording are deliberate in principle. They're not supposed to be unclear, so that may be an issue with the recording, but the distant and muted aspect should be there.

Hi Mahlered, Thanks for the clarification on this. "Muffled" was a wrong term used on my part, "Distant and muted" as you said is more accurate for what I hear.
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: dtwilbanks on September 28, 2007, 09:00:14 AM
http://www.classicstoday.com/review.asp?ReviewNum=11218
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: Bonehelm on September 28, 2007, 06:46:30 PM
I'm about to start with the 3rd symphony. I've listened to both the 1st and 2nd over 10 times each over the last few months, and I think I'm ready for the next one. Do you guys think I should keep going on with this order (1-10) or skip the 3rd and jump into an easier one first? Like the 4th or 5th, for example. All I know about the 3rd is that it has 6 movts and it's really long. I have access to Kubelik, Bertini and Bernstein.
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: Sergeant Rock on September 29, 2007, 05:44:13 AM
I'm about to start with the 3rd symphony. I've listened to both the 1st and 2nd over 10 times each over the last few months, and I think I'm ready for the next one. Do you guys think I should keep going on with this order (1-10) or skip the 3rd and jump into an easier one first? Like the 4th or 5th, for example. All I know about the 3rd is that it has 6 movts and it's really long. I have access to Kubelik, Bertini and Bernstein.

When I was your age I didn't have the means to hear them chronologically. I couldn't afford recordings so I had to make do with the few LPs I found in the library, whatever happened to pop up on the radio or the occasional live concert. Before I was 22 I'd only managed to hear numbers 2 then 5, Das Lied, 6 and 4. I wish I could have approached them differently.

I think you should listen to the Third now...jump right in. Yeah, it's a monster, and was the most difficult of his symphonies for me to get into (it took years before I ventured beyond the first movement), but I still recommend it. Set aside 90 minutes, give a whirl, and then move on if it doesn't click right away.

Sarge
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: Haffner on September 29, 2007, 06:10:13 AM


I think you should listen to the Third now...jump right in. Yeah, it's a monster, and was the most difficult of his symphonies for me to get into (it took years before I ventured beyond the first movement), but I still recommend it. Set aside 90 minutes, give a whirl, and then move on if it doesn't click right away.

Sarge




With the 3rd, I had massive trouble getting past the first half. But I was completely taken with the last half, and eventually I ended up going back to the first and loving it as a whold. It does take time and patience, as Sarge mentioned.
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: longears on September 29, 2007, 06:13:23 AM
Do you guys think I should keep going on with this order (1-10) or skip the 3rd and jump into an easier one first? Like the 4th or 5th, for example.

"...easier one?"  ???

I would keep going and listen to the third before moving on.  Or not.  But if I weren't familiar with any of them, I would hesitate to judge them before hearing, whether as "easier" or anything else.
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: DavidW on September 29, 2007, 07:03:09 AM
I'm about to start with the 3rd symphony. I've listened to both the 1st and 2nd over 10 times each over the last few months, and I think I'm ready for the next one. Do you guys think I should keep going on with this order (1-10) or skip the 3rd and jump into an easier one first? Like the 4th or 5th, for example. All I know about the 3rd is that it has 6 movts and it's really long. I have access to Kubelik, Bertini and Bernstein.

I take it by easier you mean shorter?  Try the fifth it's one of the shorter ones, but it also packs a hell of a punch (which I can't say about the first, not to say it's no good, it's just no fifth).
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: Renfield on October 02, 2007, 05:01:06 AM
I'm about to start with the 3rd symphony. I've listened to both the 1st and 2nd over 10 times each over the last few months, and I think I'm ready for the next one. Do you guys think I should keep going on with this order (1-10) or skip the 3rd and jump into an easier one first? Like the 4th or 5th, for example. All I know about the 3rd is that it has 6 movts and it's really long. I have access to Kubelik, Bertini and Bernstein.

10 times over the last few months? Heh, try ten times over the last few weeks for better effect, if you ask me! ;D

In a more serious tone, however, the 3rd is indeed a veritable monster of a symphony, and the second-to-last I got through to, in terms of semantics (i.e. what it's trying to tell me). Still, it's worth a first go, and perhaps a by-pass into the 4th and 5th, before going back to it, if you ask me. Just don't involve (all of) the 6th, or (any part of) the 7th, much less the 8th or 9th, yet. ;)

P.S.: Bernstein NYPO is the way to go for a first listen, the Bertini also being something of a (sonic) blast! And of course Pierre Boulez' grand achievement of a recording, if you can get it. 8)
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: Cato on October 02, 2007, 05:26:59 AM
And of course Pierre Boulez' grand achievement of a recording, if you can get it. 8)

Yes, listen to the Boulez recording! 

And I see no reason not to continue chronologically, if you have the time to hear the Third in one sitting!

Although people always talk about the Fifth as showing Mahler's move to a new direction, I think the Fourth is misidentified and lumped in with the "song symphonies" preceding it.

There is a struggling dissatisfaction in the Fourth, masked somewhat by its pastoral tone: the hectic use of the sleigh bells at certain moments, the sudden outbursts wanting to take over, insisting on dominance, but subsiding into calm: note the ending especially, which always leaves me dissatisfied and in something of a quandary: where is the rest of the symphony?!

So  I would have the Fourth stand alone as a bridge to the Fifth, Sixth, and Seventh.
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: Bonehelm on October 02, 2007, 07:08:22 AM
Thanks for all your comments. Almost everyone quoted me and replied to my post, much appreciated. I'm going to start listening to the 3rd soon, probably with Bernstein. :)
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: Greta on October 06, 2007, 08:38:04 AM
I went in this order...

5th, 4th, 3rd, 7th (unplanned order wise, but heard it on the radio and was fascinated), then 2nd, 6th, then 1st, 8th, and 10th, 9th, but really I'm still assimilating both of those last ones. ;)

I kept coming back to others earlier on the list too (and still do, all the time of course, because I adore Mahler) and that helped me understand them better, as I kept hearing links between all the symphonies as I was listening.

The idea was originally to start in the middle work backwards and then forwards from 5, but I ended up equally branching outwards from it! There's really no right or wrong way. I liked skipping around though.

And nothing says you have to feel like you should "get" one before you move on to the next, no previous mastery is needed to pick up on what's going on and enjoy the others. If you're curious about one, go for it - I took that curiosity as a signal I was "ready" for the "challenge". :D So I encourage jumping around, it made it even more fun for me.

I remember very well the first time I heard the 3rd, I was like what in the world...because it goes through so many different characters and is a collage of different styles of music, in its span.

All the mvmts are great, and the last one can be really sublime, but I will confess I often get stuck on the 1st, and know it better than the other mvmts. Definitely look up information about the work, which was huge help as it is quite programmatic. I think Mahler depicted the struggle between light (Spring) and dark (Winter) in the 1st mvmt brilliantly, it's fascinating, very vivid.

As far as recordings, there are tons of good ones, but my favorites are Abbado/Vienna, Boulez/Vienna, Salonen/Los Angeles, all superlative IMO. The last one is my favorite recording from that team, the detail, structure, playing, and recording, excellent in every way.

Vienna Phil, they sound incredible in both of those recordings. Boulez brings his usual uncanny examination, but Abbado is my #1 for being lyrical and powerful (the horns in his opening are fearsome!), atmospheric, and profound. The last mvmt is heartbreaking, I think he plays up links between it and the 5th's Adagietto, gorgeous stuff.
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: Bonehelm on October 06, 2007, 02:19:39 PM
I went in this order...

5th, 4th, 3rd, 7th (unplanned order wise, but heard it on the radio and was fascinated), then 2nd, 6th, then 1st, 8th, and 10th, 9th, but really I'm still assimilating both of those last ones. ;)

I kept coming back to others earlier on the list too (and still do, all the time of course, because I adore Mahler) and that helped me understand them better, as I kept hearing links between all the symphonies as I was listening.

The idea was originally to start in the middle work backwards and then forwards from 5, but I ended up equally branching outwards from it! There's really no right or wrong way. I liked skipping around though.

And nothing says you have to feel like you should "get" one before you move on to the next, no previous mastery is needed to pick up on what's going on and enjoy the others. If you're curious about one, go for it - I took that curiosity as a signal I was "ready" for the "challenge". :D So I encourage jumping around, it made it even more fun for me.

I remember very well the first time I heard the 3rd, I was like what in the world...because it goes through so many different characters and is a collage of different styles of music, in its span.

All the mvmts are great, and the last one can be really sublime, but I will confess I often get stuck on the 1st, and know it better than the other mvmts. Definitely look up information about the work, which was huge help as it is quite programmatic. I think Mahler depicted the struggle between light (Spring) and dark (Winter) in the 1st mvmt brilliantly, it's fascinating, very vivid.

As far as recordings, there are tons of good ones, but my favorites are Abbado/Vienna, Boulez/Vienna, Salonen/Los Angeles, all superlative IMO. The last one is my favorite recording from that team, the detail, structure, playing, and recording, excellent in every way.

Vienna Phil, they sound incredible in both of those recordings. Boulez brings his usual uncanny examination, but Abbado is my #1 for being lyrical and powerful (the horns in his opening are fearsome!), atmospheric, and profound. The last mvmt is heartbreaking, I think he plays up links between it and the 5th's Adagietto, gorgeous stuff.

Good to hear your experiences, Greta! I'm looking forward to hear the 3rd. I went back to the 2nd on Abbado/LFO this afternoon. The whole symphony was well played and recorded throughout, except for the final passage after the final chorus...is it just me or is it supposed to be played that fast? Because from my previous experiences, most conductors slow down and expand the last chords to create the "grand", "heavenly" feeling. I like how he lets the last chord rings in reverberation after the whole symphony though, other conductors usually treat that note as a staccato (like Bernstein on Sony classics), and it really doesn't make sense because the music preceding that final note is made up of really long chords. So I liked how it ended like a Bruckner symphony, with the sounds of the brass/organ/thick strings just hanging in the auditorium. Superb ending.  :)
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: Renfield on October 06, 2007, 02:59:07 PM
So I liked how it ended like a Bruckner symphony, with the sounds of the brass/organ/thick strings just hanging in the auditorium. Superb ending.  :)

Bruno Walter was of the opinion that the one symphony to best show the results of Mahler's apprenticeship to Anton Bruckner was the 2nd, as I heard him comment in a radio interview.

So you're probably on to something, there. ;)
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: Brewski on November 14, 2007, 11:15:44 AM
Anyone who love the Mahler Ninth may want to put down January 7, 2008 on the calendar.  Last night's performance of it with Simon Rattle and Berlin (at Carnegie) was taped by PBS for broadcast on Great Performances on that date. 

It was a fascinating, harrowing reading, and Rattle made the piece sound very modern, almost atonal.  The program also included the U.S. premiere of Magnus Lindberg's Seht die Sonne (2007), which was agreeable enough, if maybe not one of his best, but the orchestra played it about as well as could be imagined.

Apparently during the intermission feature, they will show excerpts from the Dudamel/Rattle concert on Monday night with the Simón Bolívar Youth Orchestra of Venezuela. 

--Bruce
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: MishaK on November 14, 2007, 12:12:04 PM
Anyone who love the Mahler Ninth may want to put down January 7, 2008 on the calendar.  Last night's performance of it with Simon Rattle and Berlin (at Carnegie) was taped by PBS for broadcast on Great Performances on that date. 

It was a fascinating, harrowing reading, and Rattle made the piece sound very modern, almost atonal.  The program also included the U.S. premiere of Magnus Lindberg's Seht die Sonne (2007), which was agreeable enough, if maybe not one of his best, but the orchestra played it about as well as could be imagined.

Apparently during the intermission feature, they will show excerpts from the Dudamel/Rattle concert on Monday night with the Simón Bolívar Youth Orchestra of Venezuela. 

--Bruce

Also of note: tonight's BPO/Rattle performance of Das Lied von der Erde and Tevot by Adès will be broadcast and webcast live by WNYC: http://www.npr.org/templates/story/story.php?storyId=16227797
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: Brewski on November 14, 2007, 12:13:04 PM
Also of note: tonight's BPO/Rattle performance of Das Lied von der Erde and Tevot by Adès will be broadcast and webcast live by WNYC: http://www.npr.org/templates/story/story.php?storyId=16227797

Yes, yes, yes.  If I'm not in the hall (will know later) I'll be glued to the radio. 

--Bruce
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: uffeviking on November 14, 2007, 07:19:03 PM
I was glued to my web cast set-up, but got in much too late, only the last portions of Das Lied. I am confused! Who sang? The announcer talked about Heppner sitting there with his hands in his lap listening, but I could not understand who he was listening to. Whoever it was, he better do something about finding those high notes right off, and not keep searching for them all over the place. Horrible!

Rattle and his conducting? All I can say, if I read one more derogatory remark about Celibidache and his slow tempi, I might get a bit testy. I have eight different versions of Das Lied von der Erde but this one must be half an hour longer any of them!  ::)
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: Brewski on November 15, 2007, 04:35:40 PM
Heppner, alas, was not in his best form last night.  (This was confirmed by a friend who was actually in the hall.)  Quasthoff, on the other hand, was really good, and I thought Rattle and the orchestra did a very nice job with the score.  I can enjoy the piece with a variety of interpretations, even a slower one like this. 

I'm very curious to hear what Rattle will do with the Tenth, tomorrow night.  I suspect it's a piece that he really likes, and that he will bring some of the shocking qualities that he brought to the Ninth on Tuesday. 

--Bruce
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: Papy Oli on January 05, 2008, 12:49:43 AM
Showing as a new release in February 4th on Amazon UK... not many details, and a steep price ..£36.99

(http://ecx.images-amazon.com/images/I/41iiX%2BUiSeL._SS500_.jpg)
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: Que on January 05, 2008, 03:04:39 AM
Showing as a new release in February 4th on Amazon UK... not many details, and a steep price ..£36.99

(http://ecx.images-amazon.com/images/I/41iiX%2BUiSeL._SS500_.jpg)

Details are to be found HERE (http://www.tahra.com/liste_product.php?search_field=pp.reference&content=liste_product&cle_second_parent=id_productscategorie&id_productscategorie=1&submit_rechercher=Search&search_data=Tah+642-644):

"Tah 642-644 - Previously unissued Mahler archives

CD I: Symphony No. 1 (Staatskapelle Dresden, J. Keilberth conducting) 4.II.1950
CD II: Symphony No. 2 (NWDR Sinfonieorchester, Hans Schmidt-Isserstedt conducting, soloists: Oda Balsborg and Sieglinde Wagner) 12.XI.1956
CD III: Symphony No. 4 (Städtisches Opernhaus- und Museumsorchester, Bruno Walter conducting, soloist: Annelies Kupper) 4.IX.1950

One of the essential traits in Mahler&#146;s creation is the fact that his works consist only of Lieder and symphonies. This apparently fortuitous fact is of capital importance: in fact it is the vivifying source of the Lied that nourished in him the symphonic flow and conditioned its evolution, at least in the first four symphonies.
The present three recordings come from German archives (Keilberth in Dresden, Schmidt-Isserstedt in Hamburg and Walter in Frankfurt).
"

BTW another Mahler IV with Walter - and a superb one - is to be found on this Tahra issue (TAH 524), rec. from 1953 with the NYPO and Irmgard Seefried.

(http://ecx.images-amazon.com/images/I/410S7E0H10L._AA240_.jpg) (http://www.amazon.co.uk/Mahler-Symphony-No-Mozart-35/dp/B00015WMDW/ref=sr_1_3?ie=UTF8&s=music&qid=1199530677&sr=1-3)
           click for link

Q
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: Bogey on January 05, 2008, 07:04:37 AM
And there is also the Mahler Fest that is on its 21st year here in Colorado (Jan 9-13).  See details at the link below for what is being performed:

http://www.mahlerfest.org/
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: Symphonien on January 07, 2008, 02:55:43 AM
Yes! My Dover scores of Mahler's 5th and 6th arrived today from Amazon! Awesome!!! ;D I'm sure I'll have a great time studying these. Now I need to get the rest of them too when I can afford it. >:D Just quickly flipping through, I noticed it still contains the third hammerblow in the Sixth, but it is placed not where I thought it would be, but instead after that section with the violin melody and harp glissando which leads to a minor chord. Interesting, I never knew that before. Can anyone recommend a good recording of the 6th which has this 3rd hammer blow from the original version?

Well, guess it's time to pull out Barshai's 5th and follow along with the score for the first time! 8)

By the way, just noticed that  Boulez's Mahler 8th (http://www.amazon.com/G-Mahler-Symphony-no-8/dp/B000TMCG8S/ref=pd_bbs_sr_1?ie=UTF8&s=music&qid=1199702695&sr=1-1) will be released tomorrow. Are there any plans for a boxed set to be released in the near future? I've heard good things about Boulez's Mahler but am hesitant to buy any individual releases in case they release the whole thing in a convenient set.
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: Sergeant Rock on January 07, 2008, 08:51:26 AM
One of the essential traits in Mahler&#146;s creation is the fact that his works consist only of Lieder and symphonies. This apparently fortuitous fact is of capital importance: in fact it is the vivifying source of the Lied that nourished in him the symphonic flow and conditioned its evolution, at least in the first four symphonies.

Which is why I suggested to a Mahler neophyte in another thread that he start with the songs. They are often overlooked here but they are of vital importance to understanding Mahler.

Sarge
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: PerfectWagnerite on January 07, 2008, 09:23:38 AM
Which is why I suggested to a Mahler neophyte in another thread that he start with the songs. They are often overlooked here but they are of vital importance to understanding Mahler.

Sarge
I think I understand Mahler, at least a little bit...but I almost never listen to his songs, other than Das Lied that is.
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: J.Z. Herrenberg on January 07, 2008, 10:02:38 AM
Which is why I suggested to a Mahler neophyte in another thread that he start with the songs. They are often overlooked here but they are of vital importance to understanding Mahler.

I agree. Every period in Mahler's compositional career has its harvest of symphonies and songs with all kinds of fascinating inter-connections. So the 'Des Knaben Wunderhorn' songs and the 'Lieder eines fahrenden Gesellen' are the complement to the first four symphonies, as the 'Rückert-lieder' and the 'Totenkinderlieder' are to symphonies 5 to 7. 'Das Lied von der Erde' is the perfect culmination: a song-symphony, which is related to the Ninth.
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: Gustav on January 07, 2008, 10:56:02 AM
I'm glad that "Mahler Mania" is back, now has anyone heard of this recording?
(http://www.farao-classics.de/cover/b108046.jpg)
http://www.farao-classics.de/english/catalogue/mahler3-e.html
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: PSmith08 on January 07, 2008, 11:23:03 AM
I'm glad that "Mahler Mania" is back, now has anyone heard of this recording?
(http://www.farao-classics.de/cover/b108046.jpg)
http://www.farao-classics.de/english/catalogue/mahler3-e.html

Yeah, it's right above Janowski's Ring on my bookshelf. It's OK. I prefer Boulez or Chailly, all things considered.
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: Symphonien on January 25, 2008, 04:21:05 AM
Has anyone heard the Boulez 8th yet?

(http://ecx.images-amazon.com/images/I/51RgkQtpGtL._AA240_.jpg)
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: Daedalus on January 29, 2008, 05:56:24 AM
Hello all, I thought I better announce myself to this thread as a recently confirmed Mahlerite  :D

While trying to avoid repeating the information I put in my introductions thread, I just thought I would post some information about how I got into Mahler.

I am a 25 year old postgraduate literature student living in Hertfordshire, just north of London, in the UK. I have been listening to classical music for approximately one year - I am still very much a novice. I fell in love with Mahler symphonies 1 and 5 early on in my listening career - I was especially touched by the incredible orchestral colours, and the tempestuous percussion and brass in the fifth - and I then decided to to create a little project for myself to work through the Gustav Mahler symphonies and read in-depth about his life. I began to listen to the symphonies, starting at the beginning with Symphony no.1, listening to each piece somewhere between 7 and 10 times until it had ‘sunk in’, i.e. until I felt I had appreciated it. This was last summer and so far I have reached the eighth symphony. I also intend to listen to the songs after finishing the symphonies - I've probably done it the wrong way around as I am told that the songs inform the symphonies to an extent. Having listened to some of Des Knaben Wunderhorn, I certainly see the links to the first 4 symphonies!

I have found the David Hurwitz Unlocking the Masters books to be a wonderful aid to my listening - his Mahler symphonies book is terrific for a beginner. I have also read about Mahler in The Rough Guide to Classic Music, Michael Steinberg’s The Symphony and Schonberg’s Lives of the Great Composers. I read Mahler His Life Work and World by K. & H. Blaukopf, which is another fantastic way of finding out about Mahler's life.

I have been on a fantastic journey thus far. I particularly love the first three symphonies, and numbers five and six.  I have been slowly working through each piece, savouring every note and immersing myself in the world of Mahler.

I am also trying to see the Mahler symphonies performed by live orchestras in the future. This year, already, I have seen the London Symphony Orchestra conducted by Valery Gergiev perform Symphony no. 1, which was fantastic. I have also have tickets to see Gergiev and the LSO perform Mahler's 2nd, 7th and 9th symphonies later this year. I can't wait!

Incidentally, BBC Radio Three is going to be showcasing some of Gergiev's Mahler cycle this week on Performance on Three. Indeed, yesterday was the first symphony performance that I attended a couple of weeks ago (available for listening on the BBC Three website), tonight the performance will be of Mahler's third, Wednesday is Mahler's fourth and Thursday is Mahler's sixth. Well worth catching, if you have DAB or can access it through the internet.

Yours Faithfully,
D.



Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: knight66 on January 29, 2008, 01:54:20 PM
Great to hear from you. I hope you enjoy it here. I am also in England. The Gergiev concerts ought to be a must see. I don't get to see as many concerts as I might. This year I will try to do better, no excuse really.

Mahler is a particular favourite of mine and I have not grown tired of his music in over 30 years of listening.

Mike
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: paulb on January 29, 2008, 03:27:59 PM
Great to hear from you. I hope you enjoy it here. I am also in England. The Gergiev concerts ought to be a must see. I don't get to see as many concerts as I might. This year I will try to do better, no excuse really.

Mahler is a particular favourite of mine and I have not grown tired of his music in over 30 years of listening.

Mike

Mike i detect a  bit of disingenious in your "not in 30 yrs". Don't you think its time to move on?
Let me ask you, what do you think about Berg, Schonberg, Webern? as compared to mahler?
Personally i find more excitment and interest  in Webern's short works in  chamber for soprano/piano than a  1.5 hour Mahler sym.
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: knight66 on January 29, 2008, 03:33:57 PM
I listen to lots of music, but I still get most pleasure from some of the less modern composers. I could list the living ones and recent dead, but to no real point. I do listen to both Berg and Schoenberg, but not all that often. The point I was making was that there is plenty in Mahler, as in many other composers, to keep someome interested for many years.

Mike
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: Bonehelm on January 29, 2008, 10:18:15 PM
What's everyon'e favorite "Resurrection"? Mine's the late Bernstein DG one...so stunning, overwhelming, breath-taking, awe-inspiring...
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: Haffner on January 30, 2008, 05:22:42 AM
What's everyon'e favorite "Resurrection"? Mine's the late Bernstein DG one...so stunning, overwhelming, breath-taking, awe-inspiring...




The Klemperer.
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: Daedalus on January 30, 2008, 06:54:52 AM
Another vote for the Klemperer - I also like the Berstein though  8)

I can't believe how good the ending to the second symphony is, especially the episode with the off-stage trumpet calls etc. The build up is wonderful. Spine-tinglingly good  ;D

I'm going to see Gergiev and the LSO perform it at the Barbican in March and I'm curious to see if they can pull it off.
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: Sergeant Rock on January 30, 2008, 07:22:41 AM
What's everyon'e favorite "Resurrection"? Mine's the late Bernstein DG one...so stunning, overwhelming, breath-taking, awe-inspiring...

Below are the Resurrections I own. My desert island trio are highlighted. Coincidentally, they're all with the Wiener Philharmoniker. Kaplan simply gets everything right (the result of long years of exclusive study and conducting of this symphony). Maazel gets everything wrong. He's too slow with tempos pulled like taffy; ultra interventionist to an extent even Lenny didn't dare. Perverse it may be but I find it a stunning, fascinating performance. Boulez makes the symphony sound like part of the 20th century instead of the 19th.

Special jury prize goes to an underdog: Slatkin and St.Louis. Telarc's sonics are stunning. The concluding pages have never sounded better with clearly differentiated chorus and orchestra, a prominent organ, percussion, and bells that sound like real church bells, not anvils. Kathleen Battle and the veteran Maureen Forrester (heard her thirty-five years ago in Cleveland when Ormandy conducted the Resurrection) are my favorite soloists.

I like Bernstein's DG performance too. I almost love it...but I think he saps the energy out of the choral peroration with a tempo that is just too slow. He loses the rhythmic thrust and robs the music of its emotion. I'm with Lenny all the way...up until that point just before the end when things, to my ears, fall apart.

BERNSTEIN/LSO
BERNSTEIN/NY PHIL (SONY)
BERNSTEIN/NY PHIL (DG)
SINOPOLI/PHILHARMONIA
KAPLAN/LSO
KAPLAN/WP
WALTER/COLUMBIA SO
SEGERSTAM/DANISH NAT RADIO
BOULEZ/WP
BERTINI/KÖLNER RSO
MAAZEL/WP
SLATKIN/ST LOUIS
TENNSTEDT/LPO
SOLTI/LSO
NEUMANN/CZECH PHIL
LEVI/ATLANTA
FRIED/BERLINER STAATSKAPELLE
KLEMPERER/PHILHARMONIA
MEHTA/WP
HAITINK/CONCERTGEBOUW

Sarge
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: Sergeant Rock on January 30, 2008, 07:28:01 AM
Hello all, I thought I better announce myself to this thread as a recently confirmed Mahlerite  :D

Welcome, Daedalus. It's always good to have another Mahlerite join the forum (especially since we've lost a few prominent members like Mahler Titan and Mahlered).

Sarge
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: Cato on January 30, 2008, 08:03:06 AM
Has anyone heard the Boulez 8th yet?

(http://ecx.images-amazon.com/images/I/51RgkQtpGtL._AA240_.jpg)

No, I did not realize it was out!  Looks like that will be my Father's Day present from somebody!

On the "Resurrection" list: RCA, in the early 1970's, had a great recording with Eugene Ormandy and the Philadelphia Orchestra, which rattled the heavens.  Amazon does not list this anywhere.

Today I would also choose Boulez on DGG, along with the Kubelik on DGG: in the latter I recall the singing as top-rate and the excitement in the finale is rarely matched.
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: Sergeant Rock on January 30, 2008, 08:06:21 AM
Mike i detect a  bit of disingenious in your "not in 30 yrs". Don't you think its time to move on?
Let me ask you, what do you think about Berg, Schonberg, Webern? as compared to mahler?
Personally i find more excitment and interest  in Webern's short works in  chamber for soprano/piano than a  1.5 hour Mahler sym.

Well I believe Mike is not being disingenuous. In my case it's been over forty years with no loss of interest in Mahler's music. How can one lose interest? To reference a famous Mahler quote, his music contains the entire world. It's complex and contains every human emotion (not just bitterness, despair and pained stoicism like Pettersson's). I also love the composers you love. I've been listening to Pettersson since the early 70s and own every work that's been recorded. I bought my first Second Viennese School recording in 1966 when I was 17 . My collection contains much Schnittke. I'm familar with the composers you love the most and I have a hard time imagining their music without Mahler's example and lead. I believe Mahler was the beginning of the 20th century, the beginning of our modern world, not the culmination of the old Romantic century. He's as relevant today, perhaps more relevant, than he was a hundred years ago.

Sarge
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: Sergeant Rock on January 30, 2008, 08:13:26 AM
On the "Resurrection" list: RCA, in the early 1970's, had a great recording with Eugene Ormandy and the Philadelphia Orchestra, which rattled the heavens.

I believe you. I wish there were a recording of Ormandy's Cleveland Orchestra performance. It was overwhelming...at least in memory. Bernstein conducted a Resurrection in Cleveland too. 1970. Unfortunately I was not home then but was in far off climes keeping the world safe from the Red Threat.  ;)

Sarge
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: Bonehelm on February 02, 2008, 12:07:48 AM
Below are the Resurrections I own. My desert island trio are highlighted. Coincidentally, they're all with the Wiener Philharmoniker. Kaplan simply gets everything right (the result of long years of exclusive study and conducting of this symphony). Maazel gets everything wrong. He's too slow with tempos pulled like taffy; ultra interventionist to an extent even Lenny didn't dare. Perverse it may be but I find it a stunning, fascinating performance. Boulez makes the symphony sound like part of the 20th century instead of the 19th.

Special jury prize goes to an underdog: Slatkin and St.Louis. Telarc's sonics are stunning. The concluding pages have never sounded better with clearly differentiated chorus and orchestra, a prominent organ, percussion, and bells that sound like real church bells, not anvils. Kathleen Battle and the veteran Maureen Forrester (heard her thirty-five years ago in Cleveland when Ormandy conducted the Resurrection) are my favorite soloists.

I like Bernstein's DG performance too. I almost love it...but I think he saps the energy out of the choral peroration with a tempo that is just too slow. He loses the rhythmic thrust and robs the music of its emotion. I'm with Lenny all the way...up until that point just before the end when things, to my ears, fall apart.

BERNSTEIN/LSO
BERNSTEIN/NY PHIL (SONY)
BERNSTEIN/NY PHIL (DG)
SINOPOLI/PHILHARMONIA
KAPLAN/LSO
KAPLAN/WP
WALTER/COLUMBIA SO
SEGERSTAM/DANISH NAT RADIO
BOULEZ/WP
BERTINI/KÖLNER RSO
MAAZEL/WP
SLATKIN/ST LOUIS
TENNSTEDT/LPO
SOLTI/LSO
NEUMANN/CZECH PHIL
LEVI/ATLANTA
FRIED/BERLINER STAATSKAPELLE
KLEMPERER/PHILHARMONIA
MEHTA/WP
HAITINK/CONCERTGEBOUW

Sarge

Thanks for sharing with us your list, Sarge. I have almost all of those, except for Fried/berliner staatskapelle and the Neumann/CPO. Are they rare? I don't hear them being talked about much.
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: Sergeant Rock on February 02, 2008, 05:35:29 AM
Thanks for sharing with us your list, Sarge. I have almost all of those, except for Fried/berliner staatskapelle and the Neumann/CPO. Are they rare? I don't hear them being talked about much.

Other than a few offers from Amazon sellers, I believe the Neumann is only available now as part of this box set:

(http://photos.imageevent.com/sgtrock/gm2/MahComNeu.jpg)

The Oskar Fried Resurrection is an important historical document, being the first complete recording of any Mahler symphony (1924). The sound quality of this acoustic recording is ghastly though; it requires tolerance and imagination to fill in the blanks. It's available from several sources, including this box of historical performances (Mengelberg 4, Walter 5, 9, Das Lied, etc) and Naxos:

(http://photos.imageevent.com/sgtrock/gm2/MahlerHist.jpg)

(http://photos.imageevent.com/sgtrock/gm2/0636943115220.jpg)

Sarge
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: longears on February 02, 2008, 06:04:50 AM
Has anyone heard the Boulez 8th yet?

(http://ecx.images-amazon.com/images/I/51RgkQtpGtL._AA240_.jpg)
Yes, but I'm not ready to offer an opinion.  I only recently bought it and have heard it once, with divided attention due to several interruptions.  The 8th is the only Mahler symphony that I've not yet learned to enjoy...however, my wife, who usually doesn't care for Mahler at all, said that she thought it was beautiful and liked it very much! 
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: rubio on February 02, 2008, 08:18:39 AM
It's available from several sources, including this box of historical performances (Mengelberg 4, Walter 5, 9, Das Lied, etc) and Naxos:

(http://photos.imageevent.com/sgtrock/gm2/MahlerHist.jpg)

Sarge

I noted that you thought the sound of the Mengelberg 4 in this box set was quite OK. Have you heard any other transfers of this recording so you've had the chance to compare? I really like that perfomance and Jo Vincent's voice.
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: Sergeant Rock on February 02, 2008, 03:12:40 PM
I noted that you thought the sound of the Mengelberg 4 in this box set was quite OK. Have you heard any other transfers of this recording so you've had the chance to compare? I really like that perfomance and Jo Vincent's voice.

I've only heard the Walter Das Lied, Fried 2 and Mengelberg 4 so far. I'll try to hear the rest soon. I'll post my impressions here.

Sarge
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: Symphonien on February 03, 2008, 12:10:51 AM
Yes, but I'm not ready to offer an opinion.  I only recently bought it and have heard it once, with divided attention due to several interruptions.  The 8th is the only Mahler symphony that I've not yet learned to enjoy...however, my wife, who usually doesn't care for Mahler at all, said that she thought it was beautiful and liked it very much! 

Yes, I'm not a big fan of the 8th yet either but am hoping that if it's a good recording, the Boulez may change my mind.

By the way, does anyone know if they're planning to release Boulez's Mahler in a box set in the near future? I don't have any of the individual releases yet and am wondering if it would be worth waiting for this or not?
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: Bonehelm on February 03, 2008, 11:26:49 AM
Other than a few offers from Amazon sellers, I believe the Neumann is only available now as part of this box set:

(http://photos.imageevent.com/sgtrock/gm2/MahComNeu.jpg)

The Oskar Fried Resurrection is an important historical document, being the first complete recording of any Mahler symphony (1924). The sound quality of this acoustic recording is ghastly though; it requires tolerance and imagination to fill in the blanks. It's available from several sources, including this box of historical performances (Mengelberg 4, Walter 5, 9, Das Lied, etc) and Naxos:

(http://photos.imageevent.com/sgtrock/gm2/MahlerHist.jpg)

(http://photos.imageevent.com/sgtrock/gm2/0636943115220.jpg)

Sarge

It's ok, I like my Mahler fried  ;D
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: longears on February 07, 2008, 09:36:26 PM
Yes, I'm not a big fan of the 8th yet either but am hoping that if it's a good recording, the Boulez may change my mind.

By the way, does anyone know if they're planning to release Boulez's Mahler in a box set in the near future? I don't have any of the individual releases yet and am wondering if it would be worth waiting for this or not?
This is probably my favorite cycle, along with Kubelik.  I like Boulez's clarity and restraint--Mahler's so over-the-top to begin with that wallowing in his excesses usually strikes me as maudlin.  After a more careful hearing of the 8th tonight, I still dislike the bombast of much of Part I, but Boulez's team carries it off well enough, if you like that sort of thing.  Where this symphony and this recording really shine is in most of Part II, the Faust scene.  To my ears this is magnificent, with beautiful playing from the orchestra and lovely singing by all--except for the bass, Robert Holl, whose tone I don't like and whose pitch seems off throughout the Pater profundus.  The ending, of course, gets a bit bombastic again for my tastes, but I don't fault the performance for that.   In short, it seems to me a very good recording of a very flawed symphony.  YMMV.  ;)
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: drogulus on February 09, 2008, 09:27:10 AM


     Both Kubeliks are great, IMO.

(http://img142.imageshack.us/img142/5539/mahler8kubelikef5.jpg)      (http://img201.imageshack.us/img201/8611/mahler8xl7.jpg)

     The Audite is a live performance with (mostly) the same forces that made the studio recording on DG.
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: Symphonien on February 10, 2008, 10:43:42 PM
This is probably my favorite cycle, along with Kubelik.  I like Boulez's clarity and restraint--Mahler's so over-the-top to begin with that wallowing in his excesses usually strikes me as maudlin.  After a more careful hearing of the 8th tonight, I still dislike the bombast of much of Part I, but Boulez's team carries it off well enough, if you like that sort of thing.  Where this symphony and this recording really shine is in most of Part II, the Faust scene.  To my ears this is magnificent, with beautiful playing from the orchestra and lovely singing by all--except for the bass, Robert Holl, whose tone I don't like and whose pitch seems off throughout the Pater profundus.  The ending, of course, gets a bit bombastic again for my tastes, but I don't fault the performance for that.   In short, it seems to me a very good recording of a very flawed symphony.  YMMV.  ;)

Thanks a lot for the review longears! I will probably wait to see if Boulez's Mahler will be released in a box set, in which case I will surely buy it.
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: longears on February 11, 2008, 05:57:03 AM
FWIW, I did some comparison listening yesterday of sections with a few other recordings, then returned to Boulez's 8th.  This third time through I was swept away by the music, the pacing of the performance, the beauty of the vocalists and instrumental soloists, and the sound quality of the recording.  Once again I'm discovering that an ambitious work by a great composer more than repays the time and effort required for me to make more than a nodding acquaintance with it.
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: knight66 on March 10, 2008, 02:55:00 PM
I like piano transcriptions; amongst my favourites is Liszt's spectacular take on Beethoven's 9th. Not all are a success. There is a dirge-like four hand adaptation of the Brahms Requiem. Here is one that falls between these two extremes.

Mahler's Das Lied von der Erde: Brigitte Fassbaender, Thomas Moser, Cyprien Katsaris.

I was blind listening and soon into the first song, I could tell that this was not the piano reduction/vocal score I have. It is more complex; but also at points, the melodies that are passed amongst the orchestra seem to disappear momentarily. On reading the linear notes, I discovered that the version is by Mahler himself and does indeed have noticeable differences from the published orchestral score. There are several jolts as the vocal lines go in a different direction now and then.

Whose conception is it when we get a performance without a conductor? No one suggests that Klemperer's recording is a collaboration with Christa Ludwig. It is always discussed in terms of what Klemperer is doing with the shape of the piece. But here, I expect there is more consensus. The speeds are sane, no extremes.

The voices are all the more exposed and where there is strain, there is no submerging it into the textures, it is painfully there. The recording was made in 1990, already Fassbaender's voice is loosening and sustained notes bring out a pronounced beat. Moser would struggle considerably up against an orchestra and his top notes are at the limit of his range and attained through willpower. All this sounds somewhat negative; but there is a lot of pleasure to be had.

There is an intimacy and a deep concentration. The singers can mostly be heard as equal partners rather than one to many. Each song goes well and Fassbaender continually compells attention, able to fine her tone to a beautiful thread. 'Am Ufer' is especially successful on the piano, the percussive effects when the riders splash through the water. Although fast, that section is not rushed.

Moser comes off best in his second song, delicate, ironic.

Although the first song can sound like an epic, it is really the tenor's last song that is the most difficult with a generally high tessetura.

The kernel of the cycle is the final song; if it is a flop, the entire performance is lost. Here, Fassbaender and Katsaris work hand in glove. There is not the ebb and flow of an orchestral version. Nor are there the telling silences of the full version. But it is varied in tone and the long instrumental middle section is done with repeated chording producing a hypnotic effect. Kubelik turns this into an entire compressed symphony, but the piano provides something different, not lesser.

At the end, it fades rather than the sound melting, the percussive piano cannot emulate that disintegration of a soundworld. But it is ultimately moving with the singer managing to pull off diminuendos into nothingness, yet still singing.

So, more than a curiosity, less than the full experience.

Mike
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: samuel on March 11, 2008, 08:23:09 AM
i'm pretty much a mahler n00b... i started listening to mahler's symphonies a little while back but i just couldn't really get into them until recently when i finally found out what my problem was - i was listening to extremely long, over-romanticized interpretations that didn't really suit my listening style/boredom tolerance. i guess i understand mahler's music much better when it is interpreted in a more "classical" style (e.g. Szell's 6th and Reiner's 4th) so i was wondering if anyone has any recommendations based on what i just said if that makes any sense lol...
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: knight66 on March 11, 2008, 09:14:52 AM
If you are prepared to accept that Das Lied is a symphony of sorts; then Klemperer or Boulez would possibly suit you.

In fact Boulez may be someone whose Symphonic cycle might be your cup of tea. Certainly not at the romantic extreme, some are almost severely classical in approach. Have a look on the web for reviews of his Mahler.

Some may be here...
http://www.classicstoday.com/search.asp

Or here
http://www.musicweb-international.com/classrev/classrev.htm

Mike
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: Brewski on March 11, 2008, 09:27:00 AM
If you are prepared to accept that Das Lied is a symphony of sorts; then Klemperer or Boulez would possibly suit you.

In fact Boulez may be someone whose Symphonic cycle might be your cup of tea. Certainly not at the romantic extreme, some are almost severely classical in approach. Have a look on the web for reviews of his Mahler.

Some may be here...
http://www.classicstoday.com/search.asp

Or here
http://www.musicweb-international.com/classrev/classrev.htm

Mike

Yes, I second Mike's suggestion for Boulez, who conducts Mahler as if x-raying the scores--with often quite interesting results. 

--Bruce
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: Papy Oli on March 11, 2008, 01:41:31 PM
Samuel,

To follow Mike's and Bruce's recommendations, you can have a taster of Boulez on Mahler's 2nd there :

http://www.good-music-guide.com/community/index.php/topic,2599.msg74870.html#msg74870 (http://www.good-music-guide.com/community/index.php/topic,2599.msg74870.html#msg74870)

great performance indeed.

Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: samuel on March 11, 2008, 03:45:05 PM
thank you ill def have to check out boulez  :)
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: Renfield on March 31, 2008, 09:42:40 AM
May I put in a word for the Gielen box set on Hänssler Classic?

(http://ecx.images-amazon.com/images/I/41fV-LCrtqL._SS500_.jpg)

I finally got my hands on it recently, and am tempted to call it the most all-round accomplished Mahler box set I've come across, bar none!

Particularly certain symphonies, like the 2nd, are superbly done indeed. And there's not a recording in there that's less than "very good".

(In my opinion, of course. But I really was impressed - much further than even from the excellent Bertini set, on EMI.)
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: J.Z. Herrenberg on March 31, 2008, 10:27:16 AM
May I put in a word for the Gielen box set on Hänssler Classic?

I finally got my hands on it recently, and am tempted to call it the most all-round accomplished Mahler box set I've come across, bar none!

Particularly certain symphonies, like the 2nd, are superbly done indeed. And there's not a recording in there that's less than "very good".

(In my opinion, of course. But I really was impressed - much further than even from the excellent Bertini set, on EMI.)

I remember papy being very impressed by the Second, too. I am intrigued.

making mental note
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: Greta on March 31, 2008, 08:36:32 PM
May I put in a word for the Gielen box set on Hänssler Classic?

(http://ecx.images-amazon.com/images/I/41fV-LCrtqL._SS500_.jpg)



Mouthwatering, that is! I have preferred turning to individual performances rather than sets, but that is a set there I definitely want.

I absolutely adore his 5th, I have a great many but his approach is stunning, and the playing is fantastic in great sound, very nuanced.

Now how much does that set run, and where could I find it...
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: Symphonien on March 31, 2008, 11:32:20 PM
Hmm... I was considering that, but I think I'll buy a few individual releases instead since they include some very enticing couplings not in the box set including Kurtag's Stele, Schoenberg's Kol Nidre, Boulez's Rituel: In Memoriam Bruno Maderna as well as an orchestral version of his Notations, Berg's Three Pieces, part of Schubert's unfinished 10th... to name the ones that appeal to me most. Above all though, I am very interested in hearing Kurtag's Stele, and the only other recording available is Abbado's which is much more expensive and comes on a single disc of 44 minutes. Not to mention Gielen's comes with what I hear is a great recording of one my favourite symphonies!
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: Papy Oli on April 01, 2008, 12:51:25 PM
I remember papy being very impressed by the Second, too. I am intrigued.

making mental note

Damn right I was, and still am !! ...  ;D .. I have had that boxset in my shopping trolley ever since i bought his resurrection...i just need to make a mental note to spend my money on it  ;)

Greta, not sure about prices on the US side of the pond, but the set can be had new for €89.99 + shipping on JPC, cheaper there than Amazon UK.

Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: Renfield on April 01, 2008, 02:33:09 PM
Damn right I was, and still am !! ...  ;D .. I have had that boxset in my shopping trolley ever since i bought his resurrection...i just need to make a mental note to spend my money on it  ;)

Greta, not sure about prices on the US side of the pond, but the set can be had new for €89.99 + shipping on JPC, cheaper there than Amazon UK.



I got it for around €75 + shipping from Amazon.de, if I remember correctly. :)

And do buy it! "Nuanced", like Greta observed, and incredibly well-thought-out readings, superbly executed (if with a very few orchestral slips - I counted 3 in the entire "Resurrection"); in great sound...

It very much might be the only Mahler set I have that does not contain one performance that is in any way substandard, as I hinted above: at its "worst", it's "the thinking man's Mahler" when a more forceful approach could also have worked.

And at its best, it is simply definitive. I really don't think I've heard the 2nd Symphony more "just right". And it's not only the second.


Have I convinced those on the brink? So I hope. :D
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: Bonehelm on April 01, 2008, 09:23:16 PM
God Dudamel's M5 is horrible, there's no excitement or forward drive from the orchestra at all...it's all one piece of very boring and long background music under his baton. The playing level of his youth orchestra is remarkable, though.
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: The new erato on April 07, 2008, 09:07:24 AM
Any opinions on this:

(http://www.mdt.co.uk/public/pictures/products/standard/ANDRCD9033.jpg)

Symphonies Nos. 7 & 9 and Das Lied von der Erde

Grace Hoffman - Contralto
Ernst Haefliger - Tenor

Radio Orchestra Baden-Baden, Kölner Rundfunk Orchestra / Hans Rosbaud

Mahler’s Symphonies No. 7 and No. 9 conducted by Hans Rosbaud Coupled with Mahler’s symphonic song cycle “Lied von der Erde” with Grace Hoffman and Ernst Haefliger.

Recordings from 1954 and 1957

Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: J.Z. Herrenberg on April 07, 2008, 10:53:44 AM
I am at last listening to Gielen's Second - outstanding.
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: Renfield on April 07, 2008, 01:39:09 PM
I am at last listening to Gielen's Second - outstanding.

Isn't it? ;D

I'm glad more people are getting to know this Mahler cycle; truly a stupendous achievement, on Gielen's part.
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: J.Z. Herrenberg on April 07, 2008, 01:55:55 PM
Isn't it? ;D

I'm glad more people are getting to know this Mahler cycle; truly a stupendous achievement, on Gielen's part.

I just discovered/realized eClassical has most of the Gielen Mahler symphonies... Any favourites?
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: Drasko on April 07, 2008, 02:18:20 PM
I just discovered/realized eClassical has most of the Gielen Mahler symphonies... Any favourites?

7
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: J.Z. Herrenberg on April 07, 2008, 02:33:07 PM
7

Then I'll know what to do. Apart from the fact the Seventh has been a perennial favourite of mine.

(I'm almost a 'Veteran Member' and decided to become a 'Silver Subscriber'...)
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: Renfield on April 07, 2008, 03:19:10 PM
I just discovered/realized eClassical has most of the Gielen Mahler symphonies... Any favourites?

Apart from the 2nd? The 7th, as Drasko said, also the 5th, 6th and 9th for me; the 8th as well, if you like Mahler's 8th.

(I like Mahler's 8th, but a lot of people seem not to with quite some vehemence, and this is certainly not a recording to start with. ;))


Wait, did I just recommend all the cycle but the 1st and 3rd? I'm telling you, it's that good! :P
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: Haffner on April 07, 2008, 03:37:35 PM
Then I'll know what to do. Apart from the fact the Seventh has been a perennial favourite of mine.

(I'm almost a 'Veteran Member' and decided to become a 'Silver Subscriber'...)




I'm feeling you here. I've been there. It was nice.
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: Bonehelm on April 07, 2008, 07:53:45 PM
Anyone have a good M3 finale to recommend? Just the finale...who does it well? I have Abbado/BPO but find it too bland, Bernstein/NYPO but find it dynamically compressed, Kubelik/BRSO but find it too brisk, Bertini but find it too emotionless.
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: Renfield on April 07, 2008, 08:24:44 PM
The best Mahler 3 finale I've ever heard was from Abbado and the Lucerne Festival Orchestra, in their Proms performance last summer (which I listened to via BBC3, online).

I do realise that's not of much help, but I thought I'd make a point of how good that was. ;D


Have you tried Abbado with the VPO? Boulez? Haitink?
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: J.Z. Herrenberg on April 07, 2008, 08:56:57 PM
Apart from the 2nd? The 7th, as Drasko said, also the 5th, 6th and 9th for me; the 8th as well, if you like Mahler's 8th.

(I like Mahler's 8th, but a lot of people seem not to with quite some vehemence, and this is certainly not a recording to start with. ;))


Wait, did I just recommend all the cycle but the 1st and 3rd? I'm telling you, it's that good! :P

Well, that's the original blanket endorsement, and no mistake! Point taken...  ;) (And I like the Eighth, though they don't have it on eClassical...)

I'm feeling you here. I've been there. It was nice.

You are aristocracy (and sound like it!) And Harry is God.

I'll join you soon (2 posts to go).

Ah, no mountains left to climb...

Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: Wanderer on April 07, 2008, 09:27:40 PM
Anyone have a good M3 finale to recommend? Just the finale...who does it well?

Segerstam (Danish National RSO) does it extremely well.
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: Haffner on April 08, 2008, 07:28:58 AM
I enjoy the Litton-conducted 3rd. Alot.
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: PSmith08 on April 10, 2008, 10:18:44 PM
Anyone have a good M3 finale to recommend? Just the finale...who does it well? I have Abbado/BPO but find it too bland, Bernstein/NYPO but find it dynamically compressed, Kubelik/BRSO but find it too brisk, Bertini but find it too emotionless.

I prefer, most of all, the live Boulez M3 from the '07 Mahler-Zyklus. His studio WP set isn't bad, but I wouldn't want to be without the Chailly record.
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: Bonehelm on April 11, 2008, 06:22:46 PM
Thanks for all the above recommendations, I'll definitely check them out. :) I re-listened to the Abbado/BPO, but I don't know why I just keep coming back to the Bernstein/NYPO. Maybe it's because of the latter conductor's famed soul-stirring music making...
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: knight66 on May 24, 2008, 05:09:50 AM
I have bought the new LSO/Gergiev Mahler 6th. It is poles apart from the Mackerras version I have. Gergiev plays up the extremes, both in repose and drama. The Andante is played as the second movement and there are two hammer blows, though even without the third one, the final moments are dramatic and satisfying.

This is seemingly a live performance, there is plenty of adrenalin and thrust. The sound is close and fairly dry. Strings are silken when needed and there sounds to be plenty of detail within the soundpicture, for sure, more than the BBC managed for Mackerras, though the first hammer blow is almost lost within the orchestral textures.

Gergiev does bring balm after a gutwrenching first movement and he is not afraid to have the woodwind or strings sound acidic. After one point in the final movement, I thought we were lurching from bitterness into Rachmaninoff. It is exciting music making, possibly even on the hysterical side of the Mahler interpretative spectrum.

His version of the 1st is supposedly available, though I could not find it in London this week, but I am keen to hear what he does with it.

Initially, when Gergiev signed on with the LSO, the news was that he could not record with them due to contractual commitments; these apparently have been solved.

Mike
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: Sergeant Rock on May 24, 2008, 05:28:52 AM
I have bought the new LSO/Gergiev Mahler 6th....

Good review, Mike, and very persuasive. Makes me want to buy another Mahler 6...damn you to hell  :D

Sarge
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: knight66 on May 24, 2008, 05:37:27 AM
Haha...as I was once taught; if in doubt, take as a compliment.

I know Gergiev has had very mixed reviews for the London Mahler cycle so far. I would be interested to hear one of the supposedly less coherent interpretations to see what I would make of it.

Awaiting me are the initial three Mahler symphonies on DVD with Lennie presiding. That was prompted by enthusiasm here. I need to choose my time carefully for commandeering the TV. At the moment, we have all got the West Wing bug and are going through the entire lot on DVD at different speeds. But Mahler needs to win out....soon.

Mike

Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: Papy Oli on May 24, 2008, 07:29:20 AM
Mike,

The LSO site lists the release of the 1st for May 26th. Samples can heard there too :

http://lso.co.uk/detailedrecordinginfo&showdetailstype=recording&detailID=185 (http://lso.co.uk/detailedrecordinginfo&showdetailstype=recording&detailID=185)

Papy

PS : Should i mention that they do Mahler ringtones too ? 0:)

Edit : t'is always better with a link  :-[
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: knight66 on May 24, 2008, 08:33:04 AM
Papy, Thanks, I was sure it was around and I am also sure I went to the wrong stores. One, that is right beside English National Opera has always specialised in vocal music. It used nevertheless to stock all the main new issues whether vocal or not. Policy changes, instead they have stripped out all music that is not either vocal or ballet and have filled the shelves with foreign language films...an obvious linkage there.

Mike

Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: J.Z. Herrenberg on May 24, 2008, 11:16:09 AM
Gergiev does bring balm after a gutwrenching first movement and he is not afraid to have the woodwind or strings sound acidic. After one point in the final movement, I thought we were lurching from bitterness into Rachmaninoff.

Brilliant.
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: Bonehelm on May 24, 2008, 06:34:18 PM
Rattle's 2nd is kind of weird...why is the chromatic descension at the end of the Totenfeier so slow? And the finale sounds underpowered...give me my Mehta and Bernstein back, thank you.
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: Renfield on May 24, 2008, 07:42:57 PM
Rattle's 2nd is kind of weird...why is the chromatic descension at the end of the Totenfeier so slow? And the finale sounds underpowered...give me my Mehta and Bernstein back, thank you.

In two words: different aesthetic.
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: Wanderer on May 24, 2008, 09:14:01 PM
Wait, did I just recommend all the cycle but the 1st and 3rd?

What's wrong with these two?
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: Renfield on May 24, 2008, 09:45:14 PM
What's wrong with these two?

A slightly "aurally muddled" first, and a and maybe overly idiomatic third.

They're fine performances, just not top recommendations next to the really good firsts and thirds; whereas the other performances in the cycle all have a claim to that title. (In my opinion, obviously.) :)
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: greg on May 25, 2008, 03:49:14 AM
Rattle's 2nd is kind of weird...why is the chromatic descension at the end of the Totenfeier so slow?
slow?!
remind me not to listen....
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: rubio on May 25, 2008, 05:09:06 AM
Rattle's 2nd is kind of weird...why is the chromatic descension at the end of the Totenfeier so slow? And the finale sounds underpowered...give me my Mehta and Bernstein back, thank you.

I think that detail is quite cool for a change 8).
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: knight66 on May 25, 2008, 06:12:34 AM
You are referring to the EMI recording. It is not altogether an accurate reflection of Rattle's live performances; during which he changed many details and was inclined to go with the moment. For example, I heard him hold the extended drumroll until it became unbearable, the tension palpable, the release a brilliant dramatic stroke. But that is not a detail that is likely to work on a recording and endlessly repeated. The ending was never underpowered when I heard it.

Of course, this is only of nugatory interest, in that the recording is all that can now be heard. But even at the point it was committed to disc, some noticeable details were still being rethought.

Incidentally, I see nothing wrong in the end of the Totenfeier being slow...within the context of that particular fix on the piece.

Mike
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: Greta on May 25, 2008, 04:33:59 PM
Been meaning to post in this thread for a while, as I had the great pleasure to hear live Mahler for the first time recently! The 2nd Symphony, by the Houston Symphony under MD Hans Graf.

Mahler live is sooo much better and such a different experience than on recordings. It seemed like there was so much going on all the time, by the finale it was sensory overload. It was totally overwhelming, and luckily it was a totally outstanding performance.

Where to start, gah....one thing we noticed first were the three LARGE tubular bells, we got a kick out of the percussionist that had to climb like 20 ft in the air to hit them, we joked he needed hazard pay!  ;D

There were brass players constantly filing in and out to do offstage work, and that was certainly impressive - the way that sounds live is really special, sometimes it was doors open, sometimes half closed. It struck me how very difficult the brass writing is in the Finale, there are notable spots in which the horns/trumpet have to hit high notes softly and exposed and that was done extremely well. There is a section about halfway through the finale, where there is a crazy random offstage band, going on while the strings play this very sad theme, and then that all culminates in a big apocalypse. What in the world does all that mean exactly? That is very chill-inducing!

The choir and singers were awesome live. When the choir entered, they were still sitting down, and were so soft I couldn't even see their mouths moving and barely realized they were singing. It was so eerie and affecting! The soprano began in the choir, first we heard her, and then she rose, kind of blossomed out of the texture, then she went offstage and walked through the 1st violins to the front to finish. That was amusingly precarious for her, as the strings were sandwiched in quite tightly and there were people almost hanging off the stage with all the sections swelled to capacity.

Other random cool stuff live: Mahler's orchestration!!! And the effect it had on the audience...they were so quiet during all the brass/flute solos in the middle of the Finale, you could feel the tension in the air. He creates such a surreal and haunting atmosphere there! Also the 2nd mvmt extended pizz section, looking around the audience seemed totally fascinated, like WTH are they doing?  ;) That is a very unique sound live.

There is so much detail that popped out that had before kind of passed me by, I guess we humans are known to listen visually, and watching the conductor and musicians drew my attention to some lines and entrances I hadn't ever focused on much. Mahler's unique choices of instruments sound magical, notably, the woodwind writing, all the "nature" doodlings in the woodwinds were especially great, the way they float up over the ensemble. And the beginning of the Finale!! Where the whole flute section is blowing away on piccolos, that was just amazing live. The way that sound rides on top of the huge orchestra and his hugely orchestrated chords was awesome to hear (feel!)

The immense sheer power and hysteria of the writing really gets to you in live performance, much more acutely than on recording. Sometimes I really felt like supernatural things were being called forth. :o The ending is so magnificent, I don't know why but the last mournful violin solos got me and my friend and we both ended up with crocodile tears down the face during the last few minutes. It was quite neat, the flood of people coming out looked like they'd been run over a bit!

If that hadn't been a Sunday performance and it weren't so far away, I would've gone back again...it was too much to take in for one sitting!

Anybody - your first live Mahler? What was it like? What work and performers, and do you remember being devastated by the experience? :)
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: Bonehelm on May 25, 2008, 10:26:39 PM
You are referring to the EMI recording. It is not altogether an accurate reflection of Rattle's live performances; during which he changed many details and was inclined to go with the moment. For example, I heard him hold the extended drumroll until it became unbearable, the tension palpable, the release a brilliant dramatic stroke. But that is not a detail that is likely to work on a recording and endlessly repeated. The ending was never underpowered when I heard it.

Of course, this is only of nugatory interest, in that the recording is all that can now be heard. But even at the point it was committed to disc, some noticeable details were still being rethought.

Incidentally, I see nothing wrong in the end of the Totenfeier being slow...within the context of that particular fix on the piece.

Mike

I'm sure his is a good M2, but the interpretation is just not for me...that's just a difference in taste, that's what it is. :) I enjoy Bernstein/DG or Mehta/Decca Legends more, at least for the Totenfeier.
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: knight66 on May 25, 2008, 10:57:03 PM
Oh yes, I agree. A matter of taste.

Mike
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: Renfield on May 26, 2008, 12:36:01 AM

Anybody - your first live Mahler? What was it like? What work and performers, and do you remember being devastated by the experience? :)


The 6th Symphony, to date my only live Mahler experience: Markus Stenz, with the Gürzenich Orchestra.

I can second your comments on how amazing Mahler's orchestration sounds live, and Stenz's reading was also solid, sombre and impressively overwhelming (as it should be), at every turn.

To date, I consider it my second most precious live musical (orchestral) experience, next to hearing Ein Heldenleben from the Dresden Staatskapelle under Luisi. And I hear Stenz will be at the Proms this year with Mahler's 5th! :)
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: knight66 on May 26, 2008, 01:47:00 AM
Anybody - your first live Mahler? What was it like? What work and performers, and do you remember being devastated by the experience?

I had just joined the Scottish National Orchestra Chorus, I was 18. The week I joined they were in a performance of Mahler's 8th Symphony in Glasgow conducted by Alexander Gibson. Obviously, I could not be in the performance, but I went in with the chorus for the final rehearsals and sat in the amphitheatre, then I went in early with them for the performance and stood right at the front of the Prom area as close to Heather Harper as possible. The soloists and orchestra were on the flat, so I was on the same level as that glorious soaring soprano voice. She really was a world class singer.

The whole experience was a revelation to me, a complete knockout. The tenor soloist was extremely fine, Vilim Pibril. Felicity Palmer was another of the soloists, this was when she was still a soprano. Alfreda Hodgeson and Helen Watts were two more soloists.

It was shown on TV and my mother, who knew as much about music as I know about astrophysics, asked; now I was in the choir when was it my turn to stand at the front on my own?

It was a great introduction to Mahler and although I have no idea whether it was a good performance, it was certainly memorable for me. My ears were ringing for hours afterwards having Heather Harper sing full pelt about 12 feet from me.

I have subsequently been in at least half a dozen Mahler 8s, some good some so/so, which means, poor really. It is a piece that either comes off well or fails.

Mike
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: greg on May 26, 2008, 01:59:36 PM
Anybody - your first live Mahler? What was it like? What work and performers, and do you remember being devastated by the experience?
The 5th Symphony, played by the Orlando Phil.
I don't remember it being bad, they just needed a larger string section just as the guy in the newspaper wrote.
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: Sergeant Rock on May 26, 2008, 04:42:56 PM
Been meaning to post in this thread for a while, as I had the great pleasure to hear live Mahler for the first time recently!...

Wonderful write up, Greta. Your enthusiasm is contagious.

My first live Mahler was in 1967 at Severance Hall in Cleveland, the Sixth performed by the Cleveland Orchestra, George Szell conducting. After 40 years details are hazy but I think they used the same hammer that Abbado used in Cleveland five years later. I hitchhiked home from Ohio University, skipping Thursday and Friday classes. I sat in the cheapest section, last row of the balcony. I'd never heard the Sixth before. I didn't know what to expect. The music devastated me. When it was over, I could not understand why anyone was clapping....how anyone could clap pure tragedy. It was such desolating but truthful music. I still consider that performance (which was eventually released on LP then CD) one of the greatest I've ever heard: Szell's rather cool (classically restrained) first three movements fake us out, set us up for the kill: the most devastating, crushing final fortissimo chords on record.

My second live Mahler was a Szell/Cleveland performance of the Fourth at Blossom Music Center in 1968. Schwarzkopf was the soloist. I'm ashamed to say I didn't enjoy it, finding it lightweight and even silly sounding in parts. The Fourth took me many years to warm to. I suppose it wasn't dark or dramatic enough for me...who knows. I don't understand that shallow youth at all ;D  (Drasko gave me this performance last year--I didn't ask where he'd gotten it; needless to say, I enjoy it a lot more now.)

My mission, defending the free world from godless communism, the red menace, prevented me from hearing what probably would have been life-altering perfornances in Cleveland and at Blossom had I been home in 1970 and not in Asia: Das Lied with Janet Baker, conducted by Szell and the Second conducted by Bernstein (Lenny told the Clevelanders at rehearsal, "You guys are so fucking good."). You know, the World Order probably wouldn't have altered much had I gone AWOL to hear those concerts. I should have ;D

Sarge
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: Bonehelm on May 26, 2008, 07:32:35 PM
I wish to fly over to Lucerne to hear Abbado do Mahler before he, you know, leaves us for good. I'm still a Mahler virgin, gotta hear a live performance before I die.
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: Greta on May 28, 2008, 02:51:53 PM
Thanks for the stories all! Mike, can't beat being in your first Mahler!  ;D

You guys were talking about Rattle M2 - I think his live performances are more appealing than the EMI recording, though I still think it's excellent. There is one of he with the Philharmonia from the early 80s that is pretty hot, and then the great vid from his farewell CBSO concert, just outstanding IMO.

It is funny, I had uploaded that vid at YouTube, and was contacted by a couple of people who sang in the chorus on that. :) One guy, quite a young chorister at the time, described a similar experience to that of Mike's, said it was life-altering!

Sarge - haven't gotten to hear the 6th yet, but it is the 5th through 7th I am most wild about, and can't WAIT to hear, someday.

Man, I really love the 6th. I forget how much until I haven't heard it for a while (now listening!) I found the 6th pretty easy to get into for some reason, I think it's such a cool piece. Would it be wrong to say it's even groovy at times?  ;D

There are many classically oriented gestures, Beethoven comes to mind. The 5th and 6th still just absolutely astound me in the sheer brilliance of the writing, and perplex me too. Which I love! I have always heard a lot of Strauss in the 6th, in the high crying violin lines and especially the recurring major-minor brass declamation. The first and last movements actually feel like tone poems in essence, to me. They could practically stand on their own.

So, I finally got the new Philly 6th with Eschenbach, that's what I'm listening to. It's pretty nice, straightforward and energetic, and the playing is impressive, but the recorded sound is really strange. Very "live" and kind of dry, with a airy distance to the sound. Clarity is achieved at the expense of anything blending in the high register and especially the brass, which become very strident and overbalanced at times. It's an interesting performance, and good, but oh, I don't like Ondine's sound picture at all.  :P

I have to hear that Gergiev 6th...Mackerras and Boulez still stand as my favorites...and has anyone heard the new Jansons/RCO?! I have read some great things about it.
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: Solitary Wanderer on May 28, 2008, 02:59:34 PM
I had three live Mahler concerts last year being; 5,2 & 4.

The performance of #2 was the highlight of the year.

Simply awe inspiring music.

A friend sung in the choir and complained beforehand how she disliked Mahler and that he was too 'Teutonic'. After the performance she told me she'd changed her opinion  :)
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: Bonehelm on May 28, 2008, 03:10:38 PM
I had three live Mahler concerts last year being; 5,2 & 4.

The performance of #2 was the highlight of the year.

Simply awe inspiring music.

A friend sung in the choir and complained beforehand how she disliked Mahler and that he was too 'Teutonic'. After the performance she told me she'd changed her opinion  :)

What orchestra, choir, and under who?
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: Sergeant Rock on May 28, 2008, 04:25:03 PM
Man, I really love the 6th. I forget how much until I haven't heard it for a while (now listening!) I found the 6th pretty easy to get into for some reason, I think it's such a cool piece. Would it be wrong to say it's even groovy at times?  ;D

Not if it were 1967, the year I first heard the groovy Sixth  ;D

Sarge
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: knight66 on May 28, 2008, 09:44:57 PM
Greta,

You are spurring me on to getting to a real live concert. It is ages since I caught any Mahler. I was not in that Mahler 8th unfortunately, but almost was.....which of course does not count at all. What I did not say about the Rattle is that each time I heard him do the 2nd, I was in the choir, so I was also at the final rehearsals and able to  watch performances emerge. He would change things on the wing and he always did the concert from memory.

On one occasion he did lose the plot in the performance, it would only have been noticeable from our side, as the orchestra knew what they were doing and he quickly got back in the groove. (Almost groovy there.)

Best Mahler 8; might have been Boulez, though it did not feel that way from the inside of the performance, but subsequently I found a recording of the performance and it was pretty good. Worst Mahler 8, Leinsdorf, poor old guy was at sea and did ask that we lead him, which did not make for the most coherent performance. It was distinguished by a ferocious summer thunder storm that broke over the Cleveland summer venue during one of the filigree passages, that added the drama missing more generally from the evening.

Mike
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: Sergeant Rock on May 29, 2008, 02:21:57 AM
Worst Mahler 8, Leinsdorf...It was distinguished by a ferocious summer thunder storm that broke over the Cleveland summer venue...

A frequent happening at Blossom. The most amusing, and dramatic instance I experienced was during a Dvorak Seventh--not a thunderstorm but heat lightning's rumbling thunder that punctuated the quiet moments of the last movement. The natural percussion strokes were perfectly timed for maximum dramatic and musical impact. It really seemed as though God were sitting in the percussion section that evening, and his timing was perfect; it really fit the music ;D

Do you recall what year that was, Mike? I couldn't have been home that summer or I would have certainly attended that M8 concert.

Sarge
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: Sergeant Rock on May 29, 2008, 05:30:38 AM
Sarge - haven't gotten to hear the 6th yet, but it is the 5th through 7th I am most wild about, and can't WAIT to hear, someday....Mackerras and Boulez still stand as my favorites...

I've heard all the symphonies live, including the Tenth, but I've heard the Sixth live more often than any other. And you know I should have heard Boulez in Berlin last year but didn't notice that concert started at 4 PM instead of at 8 like the rest of the Staatkapelle's Mahler cycle. I napped through the performance, in a hotel room fifteen miles from the Philharmonie.  :'(

Oh, well, the tickets still make good bookmarks....$300 book marks  ;D

(http://photos.imageevent.com/sgtrock/maygmg/MahlerZyklusVI_699.jpg)

My next live Mahler will be in June. Järvi's conducting Britten's arrangement of second movement of the Third: "What the flowers told me" at the Alte Oper in Frankfurt. I'm looking forward to this concert. Besides the Mahler/Britten they're playing Berg's Altenberg-Lieder, five Strauss Lieder (Christine Schäfer) and Brahms Fourth. Later in the month Järvi's conducting Mahler 4 at Kloster Eberbach, an impressive monastery in the Rheingau: wine and Mahler. Perfect.

Sarge
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: knight66 on May 29, 2008, 10:24:33 AM
Sarge, It was July of 1976. We were seemingly cultural ambassadors to the US in its bicentennial year. I had been looking forward to Leinsdorf as a highlight, but it just did not turn out that way. But there were plenty of highlights in other places.

Mike
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: Brewski on May 29, 2008, 10:33:41 AM
Anybody - your first live Mahler? What was it like? What work and performers, and do you remember being devastated by the experience?

Barring a memory lapse, I am 99% sure that my first live Mahler was in 1984, this performance (http://query.nytimes.com/gst/fullpage.html?res=9F01E7DB1138F930A25752C0A962948260&scp=4&sq=Bernstein%20Mahler%20New%20York%20Philharmonic&st=cse) of the Second with Leonard Bernstein and the New York Philharmonic (and from which the Deutsche Grammophon recording was made).  Needless to say, it was quite an overwhelming experience, one that brought tears to the eyes of many of us in the audience. 

--Bruce
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: Solitary Wanderer on May 29, 2008, 05:23:37 PM
I had three live Mahler concerts last year being; 5,2 & 4.

The performance of #2 was the highlight of the year.

Simply awe inspiring music.

A friend sung in the choir and complained beforehand how she disliked Mahler and that he was too 'Teutonic'. After the performance she told me she'd changed her opinion  :)

What orchestra, choir, and under who?

10/11/2006  #5  NZSO  Susanna Malkki Conductor [First time I've seen a female conductor]

09/03/2007  #2  NZSO + Chapman Tripp Opera Chorus [plus a massed choir of voices] Patricia Wright Soprano & Helen Medlyn Mezzo Soprano James Judd Conductor. Highlight of the year  :)

13/04/07  #4  NZSO  Kiri Te Kanawa Soprano  Lawrence Renes Conductor

Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: Bonehelm on May 29, 2008, 05:46:54 PM
Anyone heard Edo de Waart's Mahler? Apparently he did almost a full cycle with the HKPO since taking over as Musical Director in 2004, but I haven't had the opportunity to hear them.
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: Sergeant Rock on May 30, 2008, 07:22:10 AM
Sarge, It was July of 1976. We were seemingly cultural ambassadors to the US in its bicentennial year. I had been looking forward to Leinsdorf as a highlight, but it just did not turn out that way. But there were plenty of highlights in other places.

Mike

I was definitely not in Ohio in July of '76. That was a hot summer in Europe. The German wine was outstanding...century wine, they call it (a vintage so good it happens only a few times per century). July was the month the future Mrs. Rock and I ruined her parents' garden while they were on holiday. We had more interesting things to do than water the garden ;D

Leinsdorf was a guest conductor often in Cleveland (he'd been the orchestra's music director between Rodzinski and Szell). Poor Leinsdorf...fate was cruel to him. One reason he was given the directorship is because he agreed to work for a bargain price. But shortly after he got the job, he was drafted! He spent most of his Cleveland tenure conducting army bands instead of his orchestra. Once Cleveland (the press, the audience, the patrons, the board) heard Szell conduct Beethoven, Leinsdorf was finished as director.

Sarge
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: knight66 on May 30, 2008, 07:31:22 AM
It was a bit of a dispiriting experience really. He clearly could not organise the forces and I am pretty sure he was not always absolutely with us in the score as he was very erratic in giving us entries and for that matter signaling what he was wanting to the orchestra.

At one point, he said we ought to lead him, not him us....a curious idea, he certainly was not following me. I think the sopranos were the ones he was following.

Bizarrely we also then after the Mahler sang Mozart's Ave verum!

76 was when I got married, indeed the year of the drought in England. Our wedding prep was rather erratic. We decided in May to marry in August and I was singing in the US for almost the whole of July.

Mike
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: J.Z. Herrenberg on May 31, 2008, 01:37:45 AM
I was definitely not in Ohio in July of '76. That was a hot summer in Europe. The German wine was outstanding...century wine, they call it (a vintage so good it happens only a few times per century). July was the month the future Mrs. Rock and I ruined her parents' garden while they were on holiday. We had more interesting things to do than water the garden ;D

I remember that summer very well, too. It was the Bayreuth centenary, I was deep into Wagner and I came mentally of age then (15) and had a wonderful tryst, too - with my Muse...

Où sont les neiges d'antan?
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: Sergeant Rock on June 01, 2008, 10:26:28 AM
76 was when I got married, indeed the year of the drought in England....

Yes, a drought too in Germany...hence the great wine (droughts concentrate the sugar in the grapes: less liquid but of a much higher quality) and hence the withering of her parents' vegetable garden.

Où sont les neiges d'antan?

Indeed...where...

Sarge
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: M forever on June 01, 2008, 01:10:59 PM
My first live Mahler experience may have been with Leinsdorf, too. I do remember I only saw him conduct the BP once in the early 80s, and that was the 1st. But I am not sure if that was the first live Mahler I heard.
Or maybe it was the 1st with Bertini and the BP (I also heard that with him and the WDRSO, but I am sure that was several years later, early 90s or so).
Or maybe the 2nd with Abbado and the ECYO (open air, in the Waldbühne in Berlin which is, well, a large open air location).
Or maybe the 5th with Abbado and the LSO.
Or maybe the 3rd with Mehta and the WP (in Vienna, on a school trip).
Or maybe the 3rd with Levine and the BP.
I am not sure. I do remember these are some of the earliest live Mahler performances I have heard, but I don't recall exactly when and in what order that was, apart from that it was in the early-mid 80s. I have heard so many Mahler performances since then it all blurs together in my memory although I do remember many outstanding individual performances clearly. Just not really exactly when that was.



Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: mn dave on June 13, 2008, 04:49:50 AM
It's interesting, at a brief scan, how many Mahler symphony box sets get five stars, or nearly so, at Amazon. Makes it rather hard to choose though--if you're basing your purchase on Amazon ratings. Which I'm not.  ;D
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: Scots John on June 13, 2008, 05:20:49 AM
Yes...I am changing my mind rather dramatically re - Boulez and his Mahler third...and the rest...it might in fact, after all my carping and degrading of it...it might in fact be the best set out there now that I'm giving it a VERY serious ear thanks to M forever. :o
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: greg on June 15, 2008, 01:35:39 PM
Yes...I am changing my mind rather dramatically re - Boulez and his Mahler third...and the rest...it might in fact, after all my carping and degrading of it...it might in fact be the best set out there now that I'm giving it a VERY serious ear thanks to M forever. :o
Ok, now that's M's queue to say that he's glad to have helped. ;)


Amazing how little I post here. I guess it'd help if i had several box sets and could discuss and compare them, right? Or else I'd be talking music theory which few would be interested in...


Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: Scots John on June 15, 2008, 03:35:28 PM
Ok, now that's M's queue to say that he's glad to have helped. ;)


Amazing how little I post here. I guess it'd help if i had several box sets and could discuss and compare them, right? Or else I'd be talking music theory which few would be interested in...




Last Mahler I saw was couple of months ago, BBC Scottish Symphony Orchestra in Glasgow City Halls doing Mahlers 4rth [EDIT:  See above, it wasn't the fourth which I've been sitting listening to for a few hours, it was the 5th.) under the direction of Robert Spano (of Atlanta SO).  Excellent stuff, especially from the trombones and horns.  A real treat from Spano, who keeps coming back to the BBCSSO for more.
I'm not changing my view that much on Boulez at all any more, checked a few other things out with some of his other recordings.  His third is indeed very good, and so is 9, but there's so much from three or four others that leave a lot to be desired.  I'm happy to have been put right on the third, though, but in the end, I would swap a Boulez Mahler for a Tennstedt or Abbado almost immediately.

Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: M forever on June 15, 2008, 03:44:44 PM
Last Mahler I saw was last month, BBC Scottish Symphony Orchestra in Glasgow City Halls doing Mahlers 4rth under the direction of Robert Spano (of Atlanta SO).  Excellent stuff, especially from the trombones and horns.

There are no trombones in Mahler's 4th.

Oops.
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: Scots John on June 15, 2008, 04:13:09 PM
 :-[My apologies, I have been listening to Mahlers fourth for the past two or three hours by different composers (including Boulez, Abbado and Solti) - so I've got crosswired.  Anyway, now edited, it was Mahlers 5th, I'll post the review I made which was previously published on another forum. :P

Here it is, not sure if this thread is the right place for it though.  Originally posted on CMM, minor edits.

Wed March 15th 7.30pm Glasgow City Halls., Scotland
Robert Spano BBC SSO
The Programme: Britten - Serenade for tenor, horn and strings
Mahler - 5th Symphony

The Players for Britten: Andrew Kennedy - Tenor, David Pyatt - Horn

The concert opened with Brittens' Serenade. This was not something I'd heard before, but after hearing it, it is something I WILL get. The Serenade contains 8 pieces, the first and last being played solo horn on natural harmonics. Pyatt, winner of the 1988 Young Musician of the Year, brings in the Serenade with intelligence and balance. Then the Orchestra starts up and Kennedy joins in with the Pastoral. His singing is clear and he stands quite erect throughout the performance, only wobbling his head occasionally, but he's enjoying it - unfortunately enjoying it for him seems to mean staring straight ahead and only sometimes finding enough in the poetic librettos to wobble. Still, he has a fine voice, his singing is beautiful, and all is well. He ends the Sonnet with its namesake, and his voice finishes it more than satisfactorily. The last piece, an offstage horn, is played beautifully and wistfully by Pyatt to end the Serenade. Plenty of applause, but somewhat belated, Spano stood wondering if anyone knew he had finished and near shrugged his shoulders before the clapping started. My hands were sore.

Next, the main event, Mahlers 5th. The Funeral March begins, and Spano looks like he knows where he's going. Elizabeth Layton, leader of the Orchestra, looks like she loves Mahler in a dreamy way, and I near fall in love with her too in a dreamy way.

The timpani are spot on, and Robert Spano gives it hell in the second movement, making sure the Orchestra keep in synch with his expressions and body movements, fleeing from first violins to double bass to absoloutley superb trumpet by Mark O'keefe, with passion from Spanos feet upward. This is quite in order as Mahler marked the movement to be played stormy, with vehemence.

The Scherzo third movement is a real tickler, Spano gives it the earthy folky feel it deserves, and it lives up to its title scherzo (literally 'Joke'), and the triangle is heard!

The famous Adagio fourth movement comes on with the conductor paying attention to the downbeats, and a magnificent weariness is born here, the World is just too much to take in, and the Orchestra under Spano lets us know that. There is scarcely a pause before Spano begins the fifth movement.

Many of the themes come together for the finale, the Adagio being prominent in this performance, and it is here we can hear (where Mahlers learning from Bachs scores) a fine balance of Polophony. There are melodies here not intertwined, but bouncing off each other in a coherent way, meeting and culminating in an expression of optimism and complete joy.

Noteworthy were Mark O'Keefe on trumpet, an absoloutley spellbinding job with no silly vibrato, David Flack (Horns), Simon Johnson and Philip Weldon (great Trombones).

My only problem with the entire performance was the Brass and Woodwind being one or two decibels louder than expected - Spano gave no let up in this and there was a little drowning going on. But then, that may be because of where I was sitting (in the cheap seats, above right of Orchestra) or the Hall acoustics - this was the only major flaw if one can call it that - it is Mahler, and some conductors (Solti et al.,) liked Mahler horns and trumpets etc to be loud as hell. Overall though, it was a superb performance, one I will remember, and Radio 3 rightly have recorded it for broadcast at a later date.

Well done Spano and the BBC SSO.
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: knight66 on June 15, 2008, 11:29:33 PM
Thanks...a nice evocation of the live occasion. I think Spano is underrated. If you want any suggestions for a specific Britten recording, let me know.

Mike
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: greg on June 26, 2008, 06:15:29 PM
no, i wasn't searching for "mailer mania", thanks anyways  ::)


what does everyone think about this recording?
(http://ecx.images-amazon.com/images/I/41J8S8AM34L._SL500_AA240_.jpg)
i got it from the library (different cover) and was pleasantly surprised. I see Bruce likes it.
Nice choices of tempi, balance of orchestration throughout. Everything is pretty crystal clear in the recording, too.
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: M forever on June 26, 2008, 06:47:44 PM
Overall, the best Mahler 5 I have ever heard on a recording. Great music making and meticulous attention to detail in a very coherent, thought-through concept.
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: Dancing Divertimentian on June 26, 2008, 08:06:27 PM
what does everyone think about this recording?
(http://ecx.images-amazon.com/images/I/41J8S8AM34L._SL500_AA240_.jpg)
i got it from the library (different cover) and was pleasantly surprised. I see Bruce likes it.
Nice choices of tempi, balance of orchestration throughout. Everything is pretty crystal clear in the recording, too.


Fine choice. One of my faves...




Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: Wanderer on June 26, 2008, 10:06:47 PM
Fine choice. One of my faves...

Ditto.
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: greg on June 27, 2008, 01:05:35 PM
cool!
Looks like the library knows how make a nice selection  :D
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: Lilas Pastia on June 27, 2008, 02:18:47 PM

Wed March 15th 7.30pm Glasgow City Halls., Scotland
Robert Spano BBC SSO
The Programme: Britten - Serenade for tenor, horn and strings
Mahler - 5th Symphony



Next, the main event, Mahlers 5th. The Funeral March begins, and Spano looks like he knows where he's going. Elizabeth Layton, leader of the Orchestra, looks like she loves Mahler in a dreamy way, and I near fall in love with her too in a dreamy way.

The timpani are spot on, and Robert Spano gives it hell in the second movement, making sure the Orchestra keep in synch with his expressions and body movements, fleeing from first violins to double bass to absoloutley superb trumpet by Mark O'keefe, with passion from Spanos feet upward. This is quite in order as Mahler marked the movement to be played stormy, with vehemence.

The Scherzo third movement is a real tickler, Spano gives it the earthy folky feel it deserves, and it lives up to its title scherzo (literally 'Joke'), and the triangle is heard!

The famous Adagio fourth movement comes on with the conductor paying attention to the downbeats, and a magnificent weariness is born here, the World is just too much to take in, and the Orchestra under Spano lets us know that. There is scarcely a pause before Spano begins the fifth movement.

Many of the themes come together for the finale, the Adagio being prominent in this performance, and it is here we can hear (where Mahlers learning from Bachs scores) a fine balance of Polophony. There are melodies here not intertwined, but bouncing off each other in a coherent way, meeting and culminating in an expression of optimism and complete joy.

Noteworthy were Mark O'Keefe on trumpet, an absoloutley spellbinding job with no silly vibrato, David Flack (Horns), Simon Johnson and Philip Weldon (great Trombones).

My only problem with the entire performance was the Brass and Woodwind being one or two decibels louder than expected - Spano gave no let up in this and there was a little drowning going on. But then, that may be because of where I was sitting (in the cheap seats, above right of Orchestra) or the Hall acoustics - this was the only major flaw if one can call it that - it is Mahler, and some conductors (Solti et al.,) liked Mahler horns and trumpets etc to be loud as hell. Overall though, it was a superb performance, one I will remember, and Radio 3 rightly have recorded it for broadcast at a later date.

Well done Spano and the BBC SSO.


Good review ! It gives us old geezers a nice feel of being back in our late teens-early twenties, when Mahler's 5th was the coolest and hottest thing in town .

Quote
There are melodies here not intertwined, but bouncing off each other in a coherent way, meeting and culminating in an expression of optimism and complete joy.
Well, that's how the movement is constructed. The ping-pong effect is quite intentional and part of the movement's extremely 'learned' structure -a Rondo that neatly telescopes all kinds of baroque and classical elements such as fugue, choral, counterpoint and the like.
FWIW, it should be noted that it's normal that there should be 'scarcely a pause' between IV and V: it's marked attacca, or "without pause" in plain English.
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: knight66 on June 29, 2008, 11:20:21 AM
I have been watching Bernstein conducting the 2nd from Ely Cathedral in 1973. I have never heard him in this piece. I had no real idea what to expect. It is by some minutes the slowest of the half dozen versions that I have. In at 91 minutes almost 10 minutes longer than most of them.

This performance is with the first and third on a double DVD set from DG.

As so often, here timings do not really tell the story. It is not a moment too long. Endlessly I was drawn to detail I have never really taken in. Detail I was aware of made a new kind of sense. Although slow, it is never leaden, but is full of energy, the rhythms lift, drama is coursing through it. It is often thrilling.

Immediately after the low strings announce the start, the tempo is set at a noticeable notch slower than I have heard it. There are fast stretches, but never hectic and the speed changes are integrated. The second movement opens deliberately with the landler handled affectionately.

The sound is close, very, there is not a lot of sense of the vast space in which they are performing. The exception is in the final movement with the offstage brass which sound a great distance and the visuals match the beautiful effect. The LSO play their socks off. Practically an historic document there are some fearsome mullets and sideburns on display. Always excepting Kurt on timpany, as elegant as ever.

My old choir the Edinburgh Festival Chorus do the honours, do them well and sing without scores. Some faces I recognise; younger than when I was around. Sheila Armstrong has her splendid two pence worth, a short but difficult solo; as she is responsible for correcting the pitch, while the choir is still singing should the chorus go flat during the hushed unaccompanied 'Auferstehn'. No correction was needed. Singing softly and a' capella is always difficult for a large choir and frequently they will all sink together...in tune. Often the passage is doubled very quietly by the strings as a safety net. But it would spoil the effect.

Janet Baker sings Ulricht as well as I have ever heard her. She copes easily with the tempo that puts two minutes onto the usual timing and uses that timing to bring out lots of shades of expression. No wonder she appears on so many recordings of the piece.

Right after her movement faded slowly into silence, Bernstein unleashes a terrific wave of sound heralding the epic final movement. He stretches silences and at times movement of the music is as though under water in slow motion; but as I said, it all works wonderfully. there is a superbly tense buildup to the united horn calls which feel like a ship being launched, then, as I think, with the best of conductors, Bernstein slows further to let the epic qualities of this section register. On it goes through the drum roll and towards the magically hushed choral contribution.

Bernstein conducts from memory, uses a stick and as I am sure everyone familiar with him would assume, he communicates fully and clearly.

Now I know what to expect and what I have been missing all these years.
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: J.Z. Herrenberg on June 29, 2008, 12:03:27 PM
Excellent, Mike. Thanks. You bring it to life.
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: Brewski on June 29, 2008, 12:09:07 PM
Wow, great write-up, Mike.  And I guess I didn't realize you hadn't heard Bernstein in this piece.  His CD with the NYPO (the DG one from the mid-1980s) is still one of my favorite versions, and this DVD sounds like it is similarly riveting. 

--Bruce
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: Bonehelm on June 29, 2008, 06:33:18 PM
The Bernstein '73 M2 is VERY reverberant. It's recorded in a large cathedral, and I find the basses boomy, treble imprecise, and middle dynamically-compressed. Very flawed technically...

but musically I don't need to say much...it's Bernstein, of course it's emotionally deep and all. Just make sure you like your Mahler beefed up instead of straight-talkers' approach like Abbado.
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: M forever on June 29, 2008, 08:41:51 PM
but musically I don't need to say much...it's Bernstein, of course it's emotionally deep and all. Just make sure you like your Mahler beefed up instead of straight-talkers' approach like Abbado.

I don't think knight thinks in such general musical terms. His review is much more detailed and perceptive than that.

Which reminds me - knight: there was a big Mahler festival in London in the early 80s where Abbado conducted all the symphonies with the LSO, is that correct? If so, did you take part in some of these performances?

I have one question though since it's been ages since I watched this film:

The Bernstein '73 M2 is VERY reverberant. It's recorded in a large cathedral, and I find the basses boomy, treble imprecise, and middle dynamically-compressed. Very flawed technically...
The sound is close, very, there is not a lot of sense of the vast space in which they are performing.

So what is the sound like, very close or VERY reverberant?
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: knight66 on June 29, 2008, 08:46:25 PM
M, No I was not involved in the Mahler festival at all. I was out of the big choirs by then, living in rural England.

As to the recording; the sound is very close and full, little reverb at all. Soloists and choir also forward in the soundpicture.

Mike
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: Bonehelm on June 29, 2008, 09:50:42 PM
M, No I was not involved in the Mahler festival at all. I was out of the big choirs by then, living in rural England.

As to the recording; the sound is very close and full, little reverb at all. Soloists and choir also forward in the soundpicture.

Mike

Are we talking about the same recording? It's Bernstein's M2 with LSO and Edinburgh Festival Chorus right? 1973 LIVE in Ely cathedral? With visible audience? I have that DVD and I watched it no less than 4 times, and the sound is VERY reverberant. I say what I heard, believe it or not. Try it for yourself and see...

I doubt either one of us received a defective copy.
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: knight66 on June 29, 2008, 10:02:23 PM
Yes, it is the same recording. I heard very close sound. The instruments are at the front of the soundpicture as though you were in amongst them. It is not what you would hear from half way back in the cathedral, which is how some recordings are designed. In those, reverb is frequent as the effect of the building itself is then quite clear on the overall sound. One of the worst I know of is the Maazel Don Giovanni that was used as the sountrack to the Losey film. It sounds like it was recorded in a hugh bathroom. Perhaps you are referring to reverb in a different and more technical way.

Mike
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: greg on June 30, 2008, 05:29:01 AM
Quote
It sounds like it was recorded in a hugh bathroom.
:D
Have you ever heard played, or heard played electric guitar in a large bathroom with reverb all the way up? I'm pretty sure i have...... now that's REVERBANT!  :D
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: Papy Oli on June 30, 2008, 11:08:42 AM
Having dug up the DVD to have a listen again, the sound on the Bernstein M2 may not be up to the standard we would expect; I personally find it a tad hollow and distant at times, but i wouldn't go as far as saying VERY reverberant.

For what it is worth, although I am not comparing like for like, I have attended my first classical concert (rehearsals and performance) in the Ely cathedral, and putting the emotional bias aside, the sound of the DVD is indeed coming out much closer than what you you would hear on location (I was about 2/3 of the way down the cathedral, and there was quite a muffle when it reached there).

Yet again, we are talking of a 35 year old recording with our personal perceptions, so i guess it is all relative, my dear Albert  ;D... enjoy the music and go with the flow  ;)
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: Bonehelm on June 30, 2008, 03:17:37 PM
Having dug up the DVD to have a listen again, the sound on the Bernstein M2 may not be up to the standard we would expect; I personally find it a tad hollow and distant at times, but i wouldn't go as far as saying VERY reverberant.

For what it is worth, although I am not comparing like for like, I have attended my first classical concert (rehearsals and performance) in the Ely cathedral, and putting the emotional bias aside, the sound of the DVD is indeed coming out much closer than what you you would hear on location (I was about 2/3 of the way down the cathedral, and there was quite a muffle when it reached there).

Yet again, we are talking of a 35 year old recording with our personal perceptions, so i guess it is all relative, my dear Albert  ;D... enjoy the music and go with the flow  ;)

Wholeheartedly agree. Reverberation isn't always a bad thing, either  8)
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: Papy Oli on July 06, 2008, 03:04:28 AM
A new 5th out last month :

(http://ecx.images-amazon.com/images/I/611painH%2B6L._SS400_.jpg)

Short review here, off the Times :

http://entertainment.timesonline.co.uk/tol/arts_and_entertainment/music/cd_reviews/article4248791.ece (http://entertainment.timesonline.co.uk/tol/arts_and_entertainment/music/cd_reviews/article4248791.ece)
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: M forever on July 06, 2008, 12:35:05 PM
I tried really hard, but I couldn't think of anything that would interest me less than yet another Mahler 5 with a basically very good  orchestra autopiloting through the piece under the "direction" of yet another of the many wannabee conductors out there. Why? Why?? Why??? There are so many recordings of this piece already, with even better orchestras and vastly more interesting conductors.
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: greg on July 06, 2008, 12:38:57 PM
I tried really hard, but I couldn't think of anything that would interest me less than yet another Mahler 5 with a basically very good  orchestra autopiloting through the piece under the "direction" of yet another of the many wannabee conductors out there. Why? Why?? Why??? There are so many recordings of this piece already, with even better orchestras and vastly more interesting conductors.
Yeah, why don't they focus their efforts on new music? We've got a couple of really good composers on this site who wouldn't be able to get the London Phil to do a recording of their music in their wildest dreams, yet the music of a dead composer can be recorded hundreds of times.
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: Dancing Divertimentian on July 06, 2008, 04:18:46 PM
I tried really hard, but I couldn't think of anything that would interest me less than yet another Mahler 5 with a basically very good  orchestra autopiloting through the piece under the "direction" of yet another of the many wannabee conductors out there. Why? Why?? Why??? There are so many recordings of this piece already, with even better orchestras and vastly more interesting conductors.

I haven't heard Van Zweden's Mahler but I was pleasantly surprised by the high quality of his Beethoven cycle with the Residentie Orchestra (The Hague). Based on that I wouldn't hesitate to audition anything he's recorded.

He seems to have a pretty good pedigree - he made concertmaster of the Concertgebouw Orchestra at age nineteen, as well as making the rounds as guest conductor with various orchestras until he took over the Residentie MD spot. He's now MD of the Dallas Symphony.

Granted we hardly need another recording of warhorse repertoire but sometimes these 'second string' performers can surprise us. Which makes it all worthwhile. Van Zweden's Beethoven cycle is one of those unheralded successes...



(http://ecx.images-amazon.com/images/I/510-G0CxAlL._SS500_.jpg)

Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: M forever on July 06, 2008, 04:36:22 PM
I haven't heard Van Zweden's Mahler but I was pleasantly surprised by the high quality of his Beethoven cycle with the Residentie Orchestra (The Hague).

I wasn't. At all.

Based on that I wouldn't hesitate to audition anything he's recorded.

Based on that, I would.
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: Dancing Divertimentian on July 06, 2008, 04:39:50 PM
I wasn't. At all.

Based on that, I would.

Perhaps you're just unable to understand it... 8)



Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: M forever on July 06, 2008, 04:44:34 PM
There isn't much or anything "hard to understand" in there. Faceless, conceptless, fairly well played, of course, and "nicely" recorded, in pleasant sound, a few random expressive touches and highlighting here and there, that's about it. A really completely superfluous product.
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: M forever on July 06, 2008, 04:59:49 PM
I don't have to because your tone is already insulting. Just saying "you can't understand that" twice without making any points is not good style. You have to explain why you say that. We are supposed to be nice to each other from now on. I am giving you the chance to make up for your insult. I have to run to the supermarket now and pick up some stuff. So that gives you some time to explain to me what is so drastically out of reach for me about these mediocre performances.
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: Dancing Divertimentian on July 06, 2008, 05:12:50 PM
If you had shown genuine interest I would have been happy to elaborate. But you were obviously more interested in beating down my suggestion than engaging in dialog.

Opportunity lost.

However, if you genuinely wish to continue you can still make matters right...'please' isn't so difficult a word...


Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: M forever on July 06, 2008, 05:56:41 PM
Please enlighten us.

(http://img399.imageshack.us/img399/4029/sharkpn0.jpg)
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: Dancing Divertimentian on July 06, 2008, 06:21:36 PM
Sorry, things have gotten too fishy in here.

However, if you'd care to take a peek at a couple of general remarks I made earlier on two of the symphonies, look here. (http://www.good-music-guide.com/community/index.php/topic,12.msg161403.html#msg161403)




Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: M forever on July 06, 2008, 06:30:43 PM
Thanks for wasting my time. Few things are as sad as when someone makes big anouncements and then has absolutely nothing to say to back that up. I had looked forward to learning some very special things about Beethoven performance here, things that I haven't been able to see and understand before, and then this. All I have learned now is that you are easily impressed, have a fairly superficial way of hearing, don't really know what "HIP" or "HIP-influenced" means, and that you don't know much about the interpretation history of Beethoven's symphonies in general, that's why this mediocre product impresses you so much, why you think it is something unheard-before and rather special, something only the initiated and highly advanced Beethoven listener (like you) can "understand". In reality, there is nothing there which hasn't been done before and much better, by a lot of people.

So you wasted my time here. ****

Don't make such dramatic statements in the future when there is nothing behind them, OK? You just make yourself look ridiculous. *****
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: Dancing Divertimentian on July 06, 2008, 06:48:39 PM
 :D

I fear you've misunderstood me. I'm certainly willing to expand on my meaning, but not on your terms.

When I said "you don't understand" I was only reiterating your favorite catch phrase. You use it liberally on this board without back up. Don't be surprised when it's used against you.

Anyway, you've yet to demonstrate you're genuinely interested in dialog. I ask you to say 'please' and then you stick a shark nose in my face! I interpret that as yet another act of hostility on your part. The 'please' meaning nothing in this context.


Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: M forever on July 06, 2008, 06:59:17 PM
Anything to avoid backing up your big statements...******I guess you think just because you actually know who Beethoven was (well, "kind of", at least) makes you think you are really extremely "cultured".

****

When I tell people that I think they don't understand things, then I usually explain why. I have spent a lot of time on these forums doing so. And I am always willing to have detailed discussions. I have them with a number of people. You are apparently not one of those with enough substance to participate. That's OK. But then you shouldn't make such a big show out of it. ***
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: Que on July 06, 2008, 08:19:31 PM
Gentlemen, if you please! :)
There seem to be some antagonism from previous encounters.. Please do not provoke each other and keep out of each others' way. I've seen the need for removing some momentos of the skirmishes... $:)

Hopefully that is the end of it. For now. ::)

Q
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: Bonehelm on July 06, 2008, 08:21:30 PM
Gentlemen, if you please! :)
There seem to be some antagonism from previous encounters,. Please do not provoke each other and keep out of each others' way. I've seen the need for removing some momentos of the skirmishes... $:)

Hopefully that is the end of it. For now. ::)

Q

I know you're doing your job with full responsibility, but can you maybe at least let me know you deleted my post by PM next time? That way I know what happened when my message didn't get across to another member...
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: Dancing Divertimentian on July 06, 2008, 08:24:39 PM
Gentlemen, if you please! :)
There seem to be some antagonism from previous encounters.. Please do not provoke each other and keep out of each others' way. I've seen the need for removing some momentos of the skirmishes... $:)

Hopefully that is the end of it. For now. ::)

Q

Dang, Q, half the thread is gone! :D That was the juiciest stuff! ;D



Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: Que on July 06, 2008, 08:27:55 PM
I know you're doing your job with full responsibility, but can you maybe at least let me know you deleted my post by PM next time? That way I know what happened when my message didn't get across to another member...

I'lll respond via PM.

Dang, Q, half the thread is gone! :D That was the juiciest stuff! ;D

I'm so sorry, donwyn!  :) But I assure you there was nothing about Mahler..  ;D  0:)

Q
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: Dancing Divertimentian on July 06, 2008, 08:36:06 PM
I'm so sorry, donwyn!  :) But I assure you there was nothing about Mahler..  ;D  0:)
 

 ;D



Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: M forever on July 06, 2008, 08:41:34 PM
I'lll respond via PM.

I'm so sorry, donwyn!  :) But I assure you there was nothing about Mahler..  ;D  0:)

Q


There wasn't anything there about Beethoven either. Even though donwyn had announced some very exclusive insights and I asked him nicely to elaborate on his rather vague statements. AND posted a cute animal pic to set a relaxed mood. Who doesn't like cute animal pics?
(http://img235.imageshack.us/img235/3848/whiteswns00808468x331zq9.jpg)
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: Dancing Divertimentian on July 06, 2008, 08:51:46 PM

There wasn't anything there about Beethoven either. Even though donwyn had announced some very exclusive insights and I asked him nicely to elaborate on his rather vague statements.

Oh, you had some questions about Beethoven?



Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: M forever on July 06, 2008, 08:57:00 PM
I have lots of questions about Beethoven, but chances are not very good someone with your background could actually answer them.

However, you announced that you could tell me some things about these particular interpretatoins which I don't understand. Always eager to expand my horizon, I still look forward to these very special insights. Unless that was just hollow rhetorics.
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: Bonehelm on July 06, 2008, 08:57:33 PM

There wasn't anything there about Beethoven either. Even though donwyn had announced some very exclusive insights and I asked him nicely to elaborate on his rather vague statements. AND posted a cute animal pic to set a relaxed mood. Who doesn't like cute animal pics?
(http://img235.imageshack.us/img235/3848/whiteswns00808468x331zq9.jpg)

Seeing as you like "cute animal pics" that much, here's one specifically for you, out of my pure kindness and generosity:
(http://blog.orly.ch/files/lolz-you-fail.jpg)

Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: lukeottevanger on July 06, 2008, 09:46:35 PM
Saw lots of activity on this thread, which I don't usually look at, so was tempted to see what's going on. Might have guessed! Nothing to add to such august discussion, except to expand on:

FWIW, it should be noted that it's normal that there should be 'scarcely a pause' between IV and V: it's marked attacca, or "without pause" in plain English.

This attacca is the only way to make sense of the otherwise very odd opening of the last movement, too. The opening A of the the horn is picking up the A of the violins which ends the fourth movement. The pianissimo A in the violins which follows is literally a last vestige of the fourth movement penetrating into the fifth, before the movement proper gets underway, so that we have IV - first hint of V - last echo of IV - V. I'm sure you all knew that, but it may as well be said. Now get back to arguing...
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: eyeresist on July 06, 2008, 11:41:55 PM
 
Do not feed the shark.

 
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: Papy Oli on July 07, 2008, 04:57:20 AM
To be released on the 28th August (UK) for those that may be interested  :-*

(http://ecx.images-amazon.com/images/I/51XBs1D45oL._SL500_AA240_.jpg)
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: M forever on July 07, 2008, 05:29:08 AM
Amazing to see that Gergiev still finds time for such a long piece in his very busy schedule. But then the LSO can play that no matter who is posing in front of them, and he has his assistants who do most of the actual rehearsing for him, so all he has to do is show up on time (which he doesn't always do either) and grin diabolically while conducting, then everybody will be happy. Do we need that on disc? Probably not. Even though this is one of the less recorded Mahler symphonies, there are still quite a few very good versions already out there. I may be completely wrong, but I have a feeling Gergiev won't add any particular insights to what is already available.
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: Dancing Divertimentian on July 07, 2008, 06:35:47 AM
I have lots of questions about Beethoven, but chances are not very good someone with your background could actually answer them.

Ah, yes, you bothered to "ask" me because you were interested in my culturally bankrupt opinion. How could I forget? :D

Quote
However, you announced that you could tell me some things about these particular interpretatoins which I don't understand. Always eager to expand my horizon, I still look forward to these very special insights. Unless that was just hollow rhetorics.

Hmm...I remember it differently. I distinctly recall it resembling a kangaroo court with you presiding and me left fending off charges of American inferiority.

Is this how you "expand your horizons"...?



Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: M forever on July 07, 2008, 08:44:40 AM
Yes. One should always be open even if it seems unlikely that new insights come from a particular direction (like yours). But - if someone claims to have new and/or special insights, why not have an open ear and check it out? A lot of the times, like this time here with you, there is nothing behind the dramatic claims, but - sometimes there is. You never know.
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: knight66 on July 07, 2008, 08:51:07 AM
BBC Radio 3 is broadcasting the LSO live each weekday evening this week. Gergiev in Mahler.

Here is a link from which anyone interested can find details.

http://www.bbc.co.uk/radio3/performanceon3/pip/9xvdo/

Mike
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: PerfectWagnerite on July 07, 2008, 09:00:45 AM
Today I have been listening to Sinopoli's Philharmonia Mahler 6th. So far I am not sure what to think. The first 2 movements are very good. I always appreciate it when the exposition repeat in the first movement is taken. I like how Sinopoli achieves an entire spectrum of dynamics from the orchestra so at times it has a very chambermusic-like feel. But when the music calls for it he gets brass playing from the Philharmonia that is unbelievable, it almost sounds like the Staatskapelle Dresden at times. I am less thrilled with the final two movements. There are times when the phrasing is a exaggerating, like the opening of the finale, when you almost hear a tenuto mark or some kind of accent on the repeated string notes. Throughout the Andante there are highlights and dynamics tweaks that make the music sound extremely intimate and beautiful but somehow doesn't give the moment the forward impetus it needs. He certainly plays this music very freely with an almost 20 minute Andante. Regardless I can't argue this is a very prepared, rehearsed, and thought-out performance that is NOT generic in anyway.

There is a weird noise at 31:17 of the final movement that lasts for about 14 seconds, it sounds like some kind of tape rolling (like in a movie theater) or maybe a percussion part but is sounds like it isn't supposed to be there...
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: Sergeant Rock on July 07, 2008, 09:39:33 AM

There is a weird noise at 31:17 of the final movement that lasts for about 14 seconds, it sounds like some kind of tape rolling (like in a movie theater) or maybe a percussion part but is sounds like it isn't supposed to be there...

It's the snare drum...although it certainly sounds like no snare drum I've ever heard. It's clearer in other recordings.

Sarge
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: M forever on July 07, 2008, 09:50:22 AM
See? I told you you could only benefit from overcoming your biases there and actually *listening* to these recordings. Are they "the best"? No. Are they "perfect"? Definitely not. Are they the "right way" to play Mahler? Who knows. Nobody really does (apart from Hurwitz, of course). But they certainly are more interesting and have more personality and character than a lot of the other stuff out there. Too many people conduct Mahler because the music is very "popular" now, without really having much to say about the music. Sinopoli does (or did). Plus it is great to hear the very free and individualistic playing of the orchestra. They do blend together well, but they also have very strong individual characters in each section. Yes, the sound may not exactly be the "traditional" kind of "Mahler sound", it may be a little lightweight and lack some power in the bass region, but they make that up by very transparent and well defined playing (and that includes the basses who could be "more" in some places, but they still play their part with great definition and nuance, and that is worth a lot, too). Sinopoli's handling of texture and harmonic elements and balance is very special. He understands both the structural and the musical-expressive value of the elements the music is constructed from, and the way he "deconstructs" the score and lays it open in front of the listener rather than just counting on the orchestral masses to blend together and impress by sheer impact and weight rather than musical argumentation is pretty special, something heard very rarely.
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: Papy Oli on July 07, 2008, 10:15:06 AM
BBC Radio 3 is broadcasting the LSO live each weekday evening this week. Gergiev in Mahler.

Here is a link from which anyone interested can find details.

http://www.bbc.co.uk/radio3/performanceon3/pip/9xvdo/

Mike

Thanks for the heads-up, Mike - Just caught the tail end of the 3rd movement of the Second  :D
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: Papy Oli on July 07, 2008, 10:31:21 AM
The Urlicht on that BBC3 broadcast was quite painful to listen to... that's not a Second i'll put on my shopping list... :-\
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: Bonehelm on July 07, 2008, 10:31:29 AM
Amazing to see that Gergiev still finds time for such a long piece in his very busy schedule. But then the LSO can play that no matter who is posing in front of them, and he has his assistants who do most of the actual rehearsing for him, so all he has to do is show up on time (which he doesn't always do either) and grin diabolically while conducting, then everybody will be happy. Do we need that on disc? Probably not. Even though this is one of the less recorded Mahler symphonies, there are still quite a few very good versions already out there. I may be completely wrong, but I have a feeling Gergiev won't add any particular insights to what is already available.

Bernstein/NYPO on DG for example.
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: Bonehelm on July 07, 2008, 10:31:50 AM
The Urlicht on that BBC3 broadcast was quite painful to listen to... that's not a Second i'll put on my shopping list... :-\

Care to give specifics?
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: Papy Oli on July 07, 2008, 10:37:01 AM
the 1st section of the Urlicht was too fast for my liking, and the overall diction was not clear at all - lots of "chewed" words...  :(
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: Bonehelm on July 07, 2008, 11:13:40 AM
the 1st section of the Urlicht was too fast for my liking, and the overall diction was not clear at all - lots of "chewed" words...  :(

Could it be due to the not exactly breathtaking quality of the streaming audio?
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: Papy Oli on July 07, 2008, 11:22:29 AM
i personally put that down to the singing, but you are right too, that streaming was below par..  >:(

and the last movement was way too fast as well... >:(

Boy, i have the "Grumpy Bugger" mode switched on tonight  0:)  ;D
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: Bonehelm on July 07, 2008, 08:19:27 PM
i personally put that down to the singing, but you are right too, that streaming was below par..  >:(

and the last movement was way too fast as well... >:(

Boy, i have the "Grumpy Bugger" mode switched on tonight  0:)  ;D

Hurry! treat yourself to this before the illness spreads!

(http://ecx.images-amazon.com/images/I/41G2EG10Y3L._SL500_AA240_.jpg)
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: Renfield on July 07, 2008, 08:37:39 PM
Hurry! treat yourself to this before the illness spreads!

(http://ecx.images-amazon.com/images/I/41G2EG10Y3L._SL500_AA240_.jpg)

Better yet, treat yourself to this:

(http://ecx.images-amazon.com/images/I/41FC5WXB8AL._SL500_AA240_.jpg)


Couldn't resist. 8)
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: knight66 on July 08, 2008, 05:54:51 AM
Better yet, treat yourself to this:

(http://ecx.images-amazon.com/images/I/41FC5WXB8AL._SL500_AA240_.jpg)


Couldn't resist. 8)
Ohww...that version of the Mahler id like wearing a hair shirt. Not my kind of approach. However, the Kurtag Stele paired with it is pretty stunning music and there are very few versions available.

Mike
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: Brewski on July 08, 2008, 05:58:13 AM
However, the Kurtag Stele paired with it is pretty stunning music and there are very few versions available.

Mike

You got that right!  Just checked and I don't think we have a thread on that guy...will remedy in a little bit. 

Edit: oops, we certainly DO have a thread on Kurtág, and someone I know started it (http://www.good-music-guide.com/community/index.php/topic,4405.msg205938/topicseen.html#msg205938). :-[

--Bruce
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: eyeresist on July 09, 2008, 05:06:26 PM

Finally picked up Barbirolli's M6 on EMI. It sure is slow.

Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: Lilas Pastia on July 09, 2008, 06:14:17 PM
It's very slow, but utterly gripping. Impossible to forget once you've heard it.

Does it make sense as per score? No idea. But Barbirolli was of the school that read and pondered long over scores before showing up on the podium. So, even though he goes against the grain tempo-wise, I think his interpretation makes sense intellectually. Mahler's long, painful descent to hell may be viewed as a maelstrom of violent emotions, but also as a dark, relentless, slow-motion pounding, complete with flashbacks from happy memories. For me it works both ways. But my appreciation and understanding of Mahler's most important work would be incomplete without Barbiroilli's interpretation.
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: J.Z. Herrenberg on July 09, 2008, 10:58:50 PM
I agree completely, LP. Barbirolli's is one of the most compelling readings I know.
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: Brewski on July 10, 2008, 07:32:22 PM
Thanks to On An Overgrown Path, one of my favorite blogs, I'm listening to Valery Gergiev and the LSO in Mahler's Eighth Symphony, rebroadcast on BBC 3 after being performed live earlier tonight from St. Paul's Cathedral.  Given the difficulties of recording in the venue, the sound is quite remarkable.  Here is the link and the personnel.  (Those familiar with the Kirov will recognize some of these soloists.)

Edit: I forgot to mention, you can listen to this for 7 days!

http://www.bbc.co.uk/radio/aod/mainframe.shtml?http://www.bbc.co.uk/radio/aod/radio3.shtml

(You'll hear the end of Sadko, but just stay with it until about 19:12, when the Mahler begins.)

Mahler: Symphony No. 8
London Symphony Orchestra
Valery Gergiev conductor
Victoria Yastrebova soprano
Ailish Tynan soprano
Liudmilla Dudinova soprano
Lili Paasikivi mezzo soprano
Zlata Bulycheva mezzo soprano
Sergey Semishkur tenor
Alexey Markov baritone
Evgeny Nitikin bass
The Choir of Eltham College
London Symphony Chorus
The Choral Arts Society of Washington

--Bruce
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: J.Z. Herrenberg on July 11, 2008, 05:09:50 AM
Thanks, Bruce. Just listened to Part 1, Veni creator. I'm no great Gergiev fan, but I like what he did there. Perhaps the cavernous acoustics of St Paul's made him go slower this time, because he wasn't as rushed as usual. His tempi were good. And 'Accende lumen sensibus' always lifts my spirits.
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: Brewski on July 11, 2008, 05:52:48 AM
I've not been to St. Paul's Cathedral, but those who have say it's acoustically not very good, at least for this kind of music.  (Knight told me you have to be under the dome, or basically the sound is terrible.)  This Gergiev Mahler may be an instance in which the recorded version is actually better than what one would hear live.

But the soloists come through very clearly and distinctly.  In this post (http://www.overgrownpath.com/2008/07/mahler-8-symphony-of-thousand-mistakes.html) on the blog, On an Overgrown Path, Pliable comments on the close miking that was required.  My guess is that if there isn't that sense of spaciousness, the payoff is in greater detail.  And I agree: the slower tempi work better.  (But then, I like Chailly in this piece, who is even slower!)

--Bruce
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: J.Z. Herrenberg on July 11, 2008, 06:08:20 AM
Overall, I like it, though it isn't perfect.

There is an interesting review afterwards...
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: knight66 on July 11, 2008, 01:12:55 PM
The acoustic setting takes a bit of getting used to, but in many ways it adds to the epic quality of the piece. However, to me the greatest drawback is the submerging of the strings who become indistinguishable for long stretches of time. The spectacular organ contribution towards the end does not register strongly.The tempi are fine, sane, nothing too pushed, but in fact, I sense no individual take on the piece, it is an efficient performance, but not distinctive or inspirational. Try Wyn Morris, also live, I think at the Albert Hall and then see how he makes much more of the narrative aspects of the symphony.

I wonder if these performances will appear on CD.

Mike
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: J.Z. Herrenberg on July 11, 2008, 10:09:19 PM
I wonder if these performances will appear on CD.

Yes. The 1st and 5th (IIRC) have already appeared. The 8th will follow in due course. I wonder what magic the sound engineers will have to employ...
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: knight66 on July 11, 2008, 11:03:28 PM
Jezetha, I have the First and Sixth, I don't think that the Fifth is out there yet. I am assuming the two performances of the Eighth will be patched/edited into live discs. They seem to be rushing the whole cycle through. I suppose I was really wondering whether there were more performances planned, possibly at another venue, which might yield a performance with more flavour, but I guess not.

I enjoyed the two initial issues, though I know the First did not meet with a great deal of approval. I am happy to pick and choose amongst the performances I want. I think his approach is too variable for me to want the whole lot.

Mike
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: J.Z. Herrenberg on July 11, 2008, 11:38:23 PM
Critic Edward Seckerson said he almost wanted to walk out during the Ninth, because Gergiev was so unsubtle and insensitive. He also doesn't prepare too well. It's hit or miss with Gergiev. He can be electrifying, but there is a brutality to his approach I can't stomach. 'Gergiev doesn't do charm', as Seckerson (I think) said during that post-concert review...
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: knight66 on July 11, 2008, 11:52:08 PM
I find a lot more charm in his take on the First than others seem to. (I reviewed the First and Sixth somewhere on this site, perhaps on this thread.)  But the Eighth sounded undercooked to me, not in terms of ensemble, but the detail of an interpretation. Sinopoli is another interesting Eighth if Morris is not available, you can feel the thinking that goes into that kind of approach. I have not always enjoyed Sinopoli's Mahler. A live 2nd felt like assisting at an autopsy; everything splayed out for you to pay attention to, but dead.

Getting the ducks lined up is not getting to the heart of this symphony and the Eighth will probably sound quite good on disc, the acoustic will enhance the soloists for example, but I doubt if it will be thought of as a valuable lasting document.

Mike
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: J.Z. Herrenberg on July 12, 2008, 12:25:08 AM
I have not always enjoyed Sinopoli's Mahler. A live 2nd felt like assisting at an autopsy; everything splayed out for you to pay attention to, but dead.

 ;D

Or put differently - the intimacy of the surgeon, not the lover!
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: Papy Oli on July 13, 2008, 09:52:15 AM
http://blogs.guardian.co.uk/music/2008/06/why_ive_moved_on_from_mahler.html (http://blogs.guardian.co.uk/music/2008/06/why_ive_moved_on_from_mahler.html)

Off a blog on the Guardian's website.

 :-\ ;D
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: knight66 on July 13, 2008, 10:21:11 AM
"I suppose the more likely scenario is that the collective consciousness has not moved on at all but, rather, I have."

From Mr Tristan Jakob-Hoff. Here is his full blog biog.

"Tristan Jakob-Hoff is a classical music writer and critic. He studied composition at the University of Auckland and holds decidedly firm opinions on contemporary music as a result. When not writing about music, he likes to spend his time earning a living."


Any interest that becomes obsessional surely is eventually satiated. Had he leavened his obsessiveness, perhaps his Mahler recordings would be enjoying a longer shelf life; rather than a life on the shelf.

I wonder what it is that he does for a living?

Mike

Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: Renfield on July 13, 2008, 01:33:58 PM
Quote
So has the shine finally come off Mahler? In a post-9/11 world - a world in which we are fed a constant, wearying diet of terrorism, climate change, genocide and epic natural disasters, but one in which we are crucially short on optimism - has our appetite for Mahler's brand of dualism been diminished? Perhaps the problem is that, while the more extreme passages in his music seem to reflect all too accurately the world in which we live, the sentimental aspects feel more and more like false consolation.

I am profoundly amused by how the world always seems to revolve around American events and concerns, at times. ;D

And on-topic, I am also profoundly amused by how people almost always seem to have to write all sorts of dissertations simply to come to terms with change; in this case, a change of musical taste.

He says it himself, he "moved on": it's about himself and his preferences. How is this about Mahler, other than to appease his insecurity? In fact, he sounds a lot like what he seems to reject in Mahler, most ironically! :D
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: greg on July 13, 2008, 03:27:28 PM
I am profoundly amused by how the world always seems to revolve around American events and concerns, at times. ;D

And on-topic, I am also profoundly amused by how people almost always seem to have to write all sorts of dissertations simply to come to terms with change; in this case, a change of musical taste.

He says it himself, he "moved on": it's about himself and his preferences. How is this about Mahler, other than to appease his insecurity? In fact, he sounds a lot like what he seems to reject in Mahler, most ironically! :D
who is this quote from?
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: PSmith08 on July 14, 2008, 03:57:59 AM
I wonder what it is that he does for a living?

Here's hoping his boss isn't an incurable Mahler-phile, lest the next office party end in tears.
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: Renfield on July 14, 2008, 04:49:37 AM
who is this quote from?

That Guardian blog post about moving on from Mahler, in our post-9/11 world. ;)
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: greg on July 14, 2008, 06:00:59 AM
ah, alright, just read it.

You know, the same thing has pretty much happened with the Brahms symphonies for me. I used to listen to a Brahms symphony just about every day for 2 years straight- and there's only 4 of them, so I got to where i memorized just about every note before long. After awhile, I just stopped listening, had no desire and still don't even though I really really love them. It was just so much that going back to one of those symphonies seems like the "same old" thing.
In fact, I'm listening to Mahler less and less...... but i can't say that I'm actually moving on. I "moved on" from Brahms to Mahler in my main listening, and I've been getting very familiar with the Shostakovich symphonies, but I'm not actually "moving on" to them.
I think it's a similar thing as the author says, just cut back a little bit and the impact will come back.
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: Bonehelm on July 14, 2008, 02:39:57 PM
I just listened to the 6th for the first time and.....WOW  :o what a powerful symphony...so hopeless and tragic and discouraging...the build-up to the hammer blows are ingenious.
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: Renfield on July 14, 2008, 03:23:55 PM
I just listened to the 6th for the first time and.....WOW  :o what a powerful symphony...so hopeless and tragic and discouraging...the build-up to the hammer blows are ingenious.

Hurray! How are you with the 7th, then? ;D

(One by one, you'll get to the 9th one day, that's all that matters. :P)
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: Bonehelm on July 15, 2008, 11:11:24 AM
Hurray! How are you with the 7th, then? ;D

(One by one, you'll get to the 9th one day, that's all that matters. :P)


Renfield is there any particular recording you want to recommend me for no.6? I have Bernstein (both), Abbado, Kubelik, Bertini, Gergiev, de Waart and Solti. Haven't heard all of them yet, however.  :)
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: Cato on July 15, 2008, 11:20:58 AM
Renfield is there any particular recording you want to recommend me for no.6? I have Bernstein (both), Abbado, Kubelik, Bertini, Gergiev, de Waart and Solti. Haven't heard all of them yet, however.  :)

Wow!  Be careful of an overdose! 

The good Renfield will no doubt respond: my vote - Kubelik and Bernstein are great for older recordings: if you are a collector who wants completeness, then do not forget Boulez on DGG.
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: J.Z. Herrenberg on July 15, 2008, 11:22:09 AM
Bonehelm, why not try Barbirolli's Sixth... It's terrific. But be quick with dl'ing, because this Rapidshare account will expire on Thursday and I am not renewing it...

http://rapidshare.com/files/123191887/Gustav_Mahler_-_Symphony_No.6_-_I._Allegro_energico__ma_non_troppo.mp3

http://rapidshare.com/files/123191889/Gustav_Mahler_-_Symphony_No.6_-_II._Scherzo._Wuchtig.mp3

http://rapidshare.com/files/123191891/Gustav_Mahler_-_Symphony_No.6_-_III_Andante.mp3

http://rapidshare.com/files/123194299/Gustav_Mahler_-_Symphony_No.6_-_IV_Finale__Allegro_Moderato_.mp3

http://rapidshare.com/files/123191892/Mahler__Strauss_booklet.pdf
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: PerfectWagnerite on July 15, 2008, 11:25:38 AM
Wow!  Be careful of an overdose! 

The good Renfield will no doubt respond: my vote - Kubelik and Bernstein are great for older recordings: if you are a collector who wants completeness, then do not forget Boulez on DGG.
What does the second "G" stand for in DGG. I keep seeing people use it but Deutsche Grammophon has only one "G" in the entire unabbreviated name. So how come when you abbreviate it, it gains an extra "G"?
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: J.Z. Herrenberg on July 15, 2008, 11:27:51 AM
Deutsche Grammophon Gesellschaft (company).
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: PerfectWagnerite on July 15, 2008, 12:08:05 PM
Deutsche Grammophon Gesellschaft (company).
Thanks, now that makes sense.
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: drogulus on July 15, 2008, 12:21:38 PM
Bonehelm, why not try Barbirolli's Sixth... It's terrific. But be quick with dl'ing, because this Rapidshare account will expire on Thursday and I am not renewing it...




     My mind has been poisoned by Szell/Cleveland, so the Barbirolli seems slow. I'll give it another try.
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: J.Z. Herrenberg on July 15, 2008, 12:34:35 PM
     My mind has been poisoned by Szell/Cleveland, so the Barbirolli seems slow. I'll give it another try.

It IS slow. But Barbirolli makes a convincing case, I think (although I don't want 'my' Sixths to be always like that...).
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: Papy Oli on July 15, 2008, 12:35:30 PM
I just listened to the 6th for the first time and.....

....I have Bernstein (both), Abbado, Kubelik, Bertini, Gergiev, de Waart and Solti. Haven't heard all of them yet, however.  :)

Bonehelm,
I am easily confused but do you mean you have accumulated those recordings (i assume complete cycles for most?), but never listened to the 6th once until now ? that's err...puzzling.... or is it just me ?  ;D

Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: Papy Oli on July 15, 2008, 12:40:56 PM
It IS slow.

hi Johan,
Just listening to Barbirolli's 1st movement now ...i am used to the abbado version, so quite a departure as well, but it does work well indeed !!

oh and Dank Je Wel !  ;)
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: J.Z. Herrenberg on July 15, 2008, 12:45:35 PM
hi Johan,
Just listening to Barbirolli's 1st movement now ...i am used to the abbado version, so quite a departure as well, but it does work well indeed !!

oh and Dank Je Wel !  ;)

C'est rien.  ;)
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: greg on July 15, 2008, 01:19:54 PM
ah, alright, just read it.

You know, the same thing has pretty much happened with the Brahms symphonies for me. I used to listen to a Brahms symphony just about every day for 2 years straight- and there's only 4 of them, so I got to where i memorized just about every note before long. After awhile, I just stopped listening, had no desire and still don't even though I really really love them. It was just so much that going back to one of those symphonies seems like the "same old" thing.
In fact, I'm listening to Mahler less and less...... but i can't say that I'm actually moving on. I "moved on" from Brahms to Mahler in my main listening, and I've been getting very familiar with the Shostakovich symphonies, but I'm not actually "moving on" to them.
I think it's a similar thing as the author says, just cut back a little bit and the impact will come back.
Sorry I wrote this post. This is pure nonsense. What can I say, I'm more obsessed with Mahler's 9th than Eric is obsessed with Pelleas et Melisande.  :P
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: Cato on July 15, 2008, 02:03:45 PM
Sorry I wrote this post. This is pure nonsense. What can I say, I'm more obsessed with Mahler's 9th than Eric is obsessed with Pelleas et Melisande.  :P

An obsession with Mahler's Ninth is ipso facto much less serious than the idee fixe of Monsieur Eric!

As you age, you will go back to things from decades earlier, and wonder why you ever dismissed them, and vice versa!  In recent years I have returned to Schumann and Schubert symphonies now and then, after decades of neglect.  Of course, I now wonder what I heard to enthuse me so much about Penderecki's Second Symphony: it seems unworthy now of my initial approval.
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: greg on July 15, 2008, 02:17:18 PM
An obsession with Mahler's Ninth is ipso facto much less serious than the idee fixe of Monsieur Eric!
Interesting terms.... i've heard the latter and probably the former, but I'm not quite sure what they mean.

Of course, I now wonder what I heard to enthuse me so much about Penderecki's Second Symphony: it seems unworthy now of my initial approval.
Haven't listened to that one for awhile, but this is the exact same feeling I have of Mahler's 8th. Good moments mixed with such overdosed grand statements that have no effect on me at all.... i suspect maybe i was just in the mood for it at first listening? Or maybe I feel it just isn't something I'd listen to again and again?  I don't know, maybe the same is true for you, too?
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: Lilas Pastia on July 15, 2008, 03:22:06 PM
Ipso facto means 'as a consequence'  - litterally "from that fact" (IIRC my high school Latin). And idée fixe (litterally 'fixed idea') simply means something that keeps returning, or that simply won't go away. A motto, a harmless obsession are idées fixes.
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: not edward on July 15, 2008, 04:06:38 PM
Of course, I now wonder what I heard to enthuse me so much about Penderecki's Second Symphony: it seems unworthy now of my initial approval.
I think it's the completely over-the-top cheesiness of the piece....it's almost like a caricature of the post-Romantic symphony, yet it's done with manifest conviction. I pull it out once every year or two and thoroughly enjoy it: even though it's a dreadful load of old rubbish it's a very well-executed load of old rubbish.
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: Bonehelm on July 15, 2008, 04:41:38 PM
Bonehelm, why not try Barbirolli's Sixth... It's terrific. But be quick with dl'ing, because this Rapidshare account will expire on Thursday and I am not renewing it...

http://rapidshare.com/files/123191887/Gustav_Mahler_-_Symphony_No.6_-_I._Allegro_energico__ma_non_troppo.mp3

http://rapidshare.com/files/123191889/Gustav_Mahler_-_Symphony_No.6_-_II._Scherzo._Wuchtig.mp3

http://rapidshare.com/files/123191891/Gustav_Mahler_-_Symphony_No.6_-_III_Andante.mp3

http://rapidshare.com/files/123194299/Gustav_Mahler_-_Symphony_No.6_-_IV_Finale__Allegro_Moderato_.mp3

http://rapidshare.com/files/123191892/Mahler__Strauss_booklet.pdf


Thanks for the links, kind sir. Couldn't appreciate more.  :) Gotta hate using rapidshare without an account!  >:(

@papy: Yes I do have that many cycles but never bothered trying the 6th. I am going in order, 1-10 with DLvDE between 8 and 9. I feel that I must be able to "grasp"  a work well before moving on to the next.  :D
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: Renfield on July 15, 2008, 06:22:35 PM
The good Renfield will no doubt respond: my vote - Kubelik and Bernstein are great for older recordings: if you are a collector who wants completeness, then do not forget Boulez on DGG.

Good to see you, Cato! (If only briefly, as it might seem.) :)


I am going in order, 1-10 with DLvDE between 8 and 9. I feel that I must be able to "grasp"  a work well before moving on to the next.  :D

That is how I approached the Mahler symphonies, bar the 6th, which "entered" out of order due to a live concert; and I've not at all regretted it! But I left "Das Lied von der Erde" out of the set, to focus on the numbered works.

(Not to say I've never listened to it, but not as carefully as the "symphony" symphonies.) Still, go ahead with your plan. 8)


Regarding the 6th, off the top of my mind I'd recommend Karajan and Bernstein/VPO, first and foremost.


Karajan is somewhat clinical (as often with his Mahler), but in a work that I feel responds very well to that treatment: his slow movement, for instance, is probably the most haunting I've heard, exactly because of the restraint he treats the most sorrowful sections with.

Ditto for the rest of the symphony, grim, steadily and inevitably paced from beginning to end, sharply etched but vividly painted.


Bernstein is, as often, in the extreme end of the "espressivo" scale, but again, the symphony responds well to the treatment. The VPO version is expansive in every sense of the word, aurally and in terms of interpretation, stomping its way to the very, crushing, end.

Definitely over the top, but a both effective and memorable performance throughout - particularly the first movement positively roars!


Other Mahler 6ths I'd recommend:

The Barbirolli version Johan (Jezetha) uploaded, an elegant, poised, but very serious reading; the Szell version (a favourite of many) as a rougher edged, bare-fanged Karajan (to which it's quite similar, stylistically); the Boulez recording Cato mentioned for an even more single-mindedly objective (but musically crystal-clear) approach; and the Abbado/BPO recent release for a more understated catastrophe.

Kubelík I'll admit to not having listened to yet, although I recently did buy his cycle, and there are also quite a few other good (even great) Mahler 6ths I've not room or time to mention here which you would certainly be far from worse off if you picked up!

All in my opinion, of course.


Finally, since you mentioned it, Gergiev made a good impression on me with the 6th, although as a very, very "alternative" reading.

Still, I'd rank it highly "for what it is", as they say. ;)
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: Renfield on July 15, 2008, 06:38:44 PM
Double-posting towards reminding myself to write a post on the 8th symphony for Greg, when I've more time.

It's perhaps the most special of the pre-9th Mahler symphonies to me; and likely the most self-contained, along with the 6th (in my view). :)
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: Papy Oli on July 15, 2008, 09:09:11 PM
@papy: Yes I do have that many cycles but never bothered trying the 6th. I am going in order, 1-10 with DLvDE between 8 and 9. I feel that I must be able to "grasp"  a work well before moving on to the next.  :D

that's fair enough, to each his own way  ;)
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: eyeresist on July 15, 2008, 10:44:50 PM
Bonehelm, why not try Barbirolli's Sixth... It's terrific. But be quick with dl'ing, because this Rapidshare account will expire on Thursday and I am not renewing it...

http://rapidshare.com/files/123191889/Gustav_Mahler_-_Symphony_No.6_-_II._Scherzo._Wuchtig.mp3

http://rapidshare.com/files/123191891/Gustav_Mahler_-_Symphony_No.6_-_III_Andante.mp3

Jezetha, I must inform you that you have the two middle movements the wrong way round!  :P
 
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: J.Z. Herrenberg on July 15, 2008, 10:56:45 PM
Jezetha, I must inform you that you have the two middle movements the wrong way round!  :P

You're absolutely right. Barbirolli: II. Andante and III. Scherzo. I seem (unconsciously) to have followed my own preference... Well spotted!  :-[ ;D
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: Cato on July 16, 2008, 04:58:31 AM
Ipso facto means 'as a consequence'  - litterally "from that fact" (IIRC my high school Latin). And idée fixe (litterally 'fixed idea') simply means something that keeps returning, or that simply won't go away. A motto, a harmless obsession are idées fixes.

Quite right!  Although I think Eric did go away!
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: greg on July 16, 2008, 05:58:10 AM
Ipso facto means 'as a consequence'  - litterally "from that fact" (IIRC my high school Latin). And idée fixe (litterally 'fixed idea') simply means something that keeps returning, or that simply won't go away. A motto, a harmless obsession are idées fixes.
Cool, thanks for the explanation. I was right about the second one after all (i got an explanation while reading about Takemitsu's orchestral works), the first is new for me.
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: Lilas Pastia on July 16, 2008, 04:30:58 PM
Quite right!  Although I think Eric did go away!

Aren't Eric's exits only a momentary pause before his next entrance ? The man is obviously an old hand at theatre antics :D
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: Lilas Pastia on July 17, 2008, 06:15:12 PM
Two quite fascinating performances of Das Lied von der Erde. Both fatally flawed by technical shortcomings, but worth investigating by the intrepid:

- Bruno Walter and the NYPO, with Kathleen Ferrier and Set Svanholm. Live from Carnegie Hall, 1948. Obviously frayed recording, but it still allows to hear a transcendent interpretation from the conductor. I didn't find much transcendency in the singing, though. Svanholm is a blustery tenor who doesn't convey anything from the poetry he declaims so forcefully. Ferrier is moving but her singing is as usual fraught with intonation problems. My wife, who knows nothing about music exclaimed: elle chante faux!. Unfortunately she was quite right. Although the voice is as ever gloriously rich, the singer simply can't control her emission. The final 'ewigs' are extraordinarily moving, though. Walter's conducting makes this worth hearing. The sepulchral, spooky character of the central orchestral interlude (in Der Abschied) is absolutely stunning. The sound is badly coloured and saturated, quite disagreeable to listen to.

- The mezzo in the other radio broadcast transcript I listened to is Yvonne Minton. Her instrument is absolutely reliable, as well as being tonally refulgent and secure throughout its range. But she is no Ferrier and although she pleases the ear, the attention wanders - a very unfortunate thing in this work. But her colleague Jon Vickers offers ample compensation. He delivers a riveting, spellbinding interpretation and a vocally sterling performance. From stentorian outpourings to mesmerizingly crooned soft notes, he offers the best combination of voice and mind I've heard in this thankless part. Pierre Boulez conducts the Paris orchestra. The sound is atrocious - there's all kind of electronic interferences, the audio signal ping-pongs maddeningly between the right and left channels in the first two minutes, and there's no musical image to speak of. That's too bad, because Boulez seems to conduct a good, well-balanced performance. If ever there was an official release of those 1982 tapes, it would be worth acquiring. It would complement anybody's favourite version with a better female alto.

Speaking of which, I was surprised to read in the liner notes to the Walter recording that it's Walter who imposed the mezzo version around the musical world, after having premiered the work in the tenor - baritone combination. Apparently Mahler envisaged using a female low voice only as an alternative to a male one, "which he favoured". I had always thought it was the other way around. Anybody knows anything about that? 
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: greg on August 03, 2008, 12:17:39 PM
anyone know about this?

a review for the Mahler 10 score:

http://www.sheetmusicplus.com/store/smp_detail.html?item=3140919&cart=3426771296542660&cm_re=289.1.4-_-Results+Item-_-Title

 
Jokl edition should be banned
"This corrupted edition refers to the 1951 publication and should be banned. There is a better alternative: Cooke and within two years Universal will publish a a new edition of all of the sketches as part of the Kritisache Gesamt Ausgabe"
-- fransbuilder@hotmail.com from The Hague, March 31, 2008


i have no idea what he's talking about..... should i wait 2 years and not buy this one?
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: Scots John on August 05, 2008, 09:23:03 AM
Mahlers 10th - I don't really do anything other than the Adagio, because almost everything else is 'reconstructed'.  There are a number of Mahler 10th 'reconstructions' out there, so don't wait.  I have four different 'reconstructions' and I couldn't bide another one.  The one I recommend most is Barshai with the Junge Deutsche Philharmonie - his reconstruction IMHO is superb, rivalling Cookes famous interpretation...although I cannot tell you why this is so, just a preference for sound quality and Barshais understanding of Mahlers Symphonic temprament.
"Kritisache Gesamt Ausgabe"  -  I haven't a clue either.
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: Lilas Pastia on August 05, 2008, 05:34:21 PM
That's a thorny question that will be best resolved by personal impressions.  The various completions/reconstructions have been performed by dedicated musicologists who pored over available manuscripts and other sources for thousands of hours before submitting their efforts for publication. I respect that. But whatever their merits, the proof of the pudding is probably not in the various editions. A great interpretation and performance of a given text will still carry more weigth than any scholarly effort brought forth by an ineffectual messenger.

IOW that Barshai version is still the one I look for when (not often) feeling Mahler's last, incomplete and unfathomable thoughts should be heard in performance.


Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: DavidRoss on August 05, 2008, 06:02:06 PM
IOW that Barshai version is still the one I look for when (not often) feeling Mahler's last, incomplete and unfathomable thoughts should be heard in performance.
Hubba, hubba, indeed!
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: eyeresist on August 06, 2008, 08:09:34 PM
Barshai is much too dry for me. Rattle/BPO (Cooke III) is my preference, intense and not mannered as R can sometimes be. Haven't heard Chailly's highly-rated recording. The Wheeler arrangement on Naxos is apparently closer to the sketches (conductor also referred to Cooke in preparation); performance is a good run-through but lacks the last degree of conviction. K Sanderling (Cooke II) has received some praise but, apart from dated sound and less than brilliant ensemble, I thought S hadn't fully grasped the work.
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: M forever on August 06, 2008, 08:27:21 PM
Have you "fully grasped" Mahler's work?

This comment surprised me on many levels. I haven't heard this particular recording, but a lot of the Eterna recordings I have heard from Sanderling and the BSO from the 70s have outstanding sound. They may not have had the most high-end equipment, but the recording engineers they had were extremely well trained musically and technically. Some of these recordings are, as far as recording quality is concerned, among the best I have ever heard. Great stereo placement, very transparent and "natural" - but just not "sweetened" or "beefed up" sound. The playing of the BSO was indeed not as "brilliant" as some "virtuoso" orchestras, but usually very solid and with a hearty, slightly rough and "honest" sonority which I have always enjoyed. So now I am really curious. Maybe I should get this recording.

I haven't heard Rattle/BP nor Chailly/RSOB, but I heard both in concert when they were recorded. So it might be interesting to revisit these performances through the recordings.
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: greg on August 12, 2008, 12:51:05 PM
I saw this on wikipedia: (Das Lied von der Erde)
 
Quote
   The last movement is very difficult to conduct because of its cadenza writing for voice and solo instruments, which often flows over the barlines, "Ohne Rücksicht auf das Tempo" (Without regard for the tempo) according to Mahler's own direction. Bruno Walter related[cite this quote] that Mahler showed him the score of this movement and asked, "Do you know how to conduct this? Because I certainly don't." Mahler also hesitated to put the piece before the public because of its relentless negativity, unusual even for him. "Won't people go home and shoot themselves?" he asked.[

Now that i have the score ( :) )..... ahem, now that anyone with internet can have the score, i decided to take yet another listen to the last movement for now.

I've always found it challenging and have never gotten into it much, though i've always loved the last few minutes. The beginning of Der Abschied is so jerky that it's hard to listen to, and the oboe is so nasal and irritating that it nearly hurts my ears. I don't get why he'd write so many fast woodwind figures like he does.......  i have the Klemperer recording, and i hear that's about the best it gets.  :-\ Really, though, the singing is perfect but i'm not sure i like the way it was recorded much either. I'm almost tempted to only listen to the last ten or so minutes from now on, which is perfect- i mean, if the singer is dwelling on the word "ewig........ewig...." you know it's gotta be good.

Is that last quote really his? If it is, that's great  ;D
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: greg on August 18, 2008, 01:57:48 PM
anyone see this?

http://www.youtube.com/watch/v/GT8m8U05ZGo&feature=relate
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: greg on August 25, 2008, 06:42:30 AM
anyone read this yet?

http://www.amazon.com/Gustav-Mahler-Vol-Short-1907-1911/dp/0198163878/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&s=books&qid=1219678526&sr=1-1

I hear it's actually 1700 pages long!  :o
But it's $80, and way out of my price range.
It's the 4th and final volume in a series of biographies, including analysis of his last works- Das Lied, and the last 2 symphonies.

Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: Sergeant Rock on August 25, 2008, 07:58:25 AM
anyone read this yet?

http://www.amazon.com/Gustav-Mahler-Vol-Short-1907-1911/dp/0198163878/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&s=books&qid=1219678526&sr=1-1

I hear it's actually 1700 pages long!  :o
But it's $80, and way out of my price range.
It's the 4th and final volume in a series of biographies, including analysis of his last works- Das Lied, and the last 2 symphonies.



I'm currently reading it. It's 1758 pages long plus another 16 covering the contents, introduction, etc. I really wish it had been split into two volumes. The thing weighs about seven pounds; it's a pain to hold for extended periods. I have the first three volumes too (bought the first in 1977).

Sarge
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: greg on August 25, 2008, 08:06:37 AM
i'm so jealous........

but it isn't a be-all end-all bio, is it?
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: Sergeant Rock on August 25, 2008, 08:22:16 AM
i'm so jealous........

but it isn't a be-all end-all bio, is it?

As an almost day to day, extremely detailed account of his life, yes, I would describe it as that. For the Mahler fanatic, I think it's a must read. It's an essential reference book too. As a critical study of the music, there are other books that dig deeper.

Sarge
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: greg on August 25, 2008, 09:02:27 AM
As an almost day to day, extremely detailed account of his life, yes, I would describe it as that. For the Mahler fanatic, I think it's a must read. It's an essential reference book too. As a critical study of the music, there are other books that dig deeper.

Sarge
Excellent.
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: M forever on August 26, 2008, 06:16:23 PM
As an almost day to day, extremely detailed account of his life, yes, I would describe it as that. For the Mahler fanatic, I think it's a must read. It's an essential reference book too. As a critical study of the music, there are other books that dig deeper.

Sarge

Have you read Floros' books about Mahler, his literary interests, the musical language of the 19th century as reflected in Mahler's works, and about the symphonies? Extremely interesting. I think only the book about the symphonies has been translated into English.
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: Sergeant Rock on August 27, 2008, 03:26:50 PM
Have you read Floros' books about Mahler, his literary interests, the musical language of the 19th century as reflected in Mahler's works, and about the symphonies? Extremely interesting. I think only the book about the symphonies has been translated into English.


I've only read the translated Gustav Mahler The Symphonies.

Sarge
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: M forever on August 28, 2008, 03:28:44 PM
I massively recommend reading "Die geistige Welt Gustav Mahlers in systematischer Darstellung" and "Mahler und die Symphonik des 19. Jahrhunderts in neuer Deutung". Both books have enormously influenced and enrichened my view of Mahler and his music, and especially its musical and cultural contexts. I am sure after 30+ years in Germany, you can read those books, if not, ask your wife to read them and translate them for you!
 ;D $:) 0:)
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: Sergeant Rock on August 28, 2008, 03:48:02 PM
I massively recommend reading "Die geistige Welt Gustav Mahlers in systematischer Darstellung" and "Mahler und die Symphonik des 19. Jahrhunderts in neuer Deutung". Both books have enormously influenced and enrichened my view of Mahler and his music, and especially its musical and cultural contexts. I am sure after 30+ years in Germany, you can read those books, if not, ask your wife to read them and translate them for you!
 ;D $:) 0:)

Both are OOP. There's one offer at amazon.de for the former: €160 (I think I'll pass  ;D ); one offer for the latter, €105. Maybe the library has copies.

Sarge
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: greg on August 28, 2008, 03:53:49 PM
Maybe the library has copies.
Ha, which library, God's library?
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: Sergeant Rock on August 28, 2008, 04:09:12 PM
Ha, which library, God's library?

Good question. I don't even know how libraries work in Germany. It's been decades, literally, since I last borrowed a book from any library. I prefer to own. Since I'm a resident of Worms, I assume I can get a library card (or whatever) and borrow from the city's library.

Sarge
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: M forever on August 28, 2008, 04:50:46 PM
Good question. I don't even know how libraries work in Germany.

Same as everywhere. You go in, show your ID, get a library card, select the media you want to check out, and check them out. If you are me, then as a rule, you return them late and pay a lot of unnecessary fees.

These days, you can even research what certain libraries have. They don't seem to have these books in Worms. That doesn't surprise me. But in a lot of cities, you can sometimes get books from other places if you pay a transport fee. Dunno if they do that there. You would have to ask them (or ask your wife to ask them for you).

In any case, if you ever get a chance to borrow or buy or steal these books, don't hesitate. They are really very interesting.
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: Scots John on August 28, 2008, 05:33:59 PM
An old book on Mahler in the public domain...
http://www.mediafire.com/file/aebiuxp5tso/gustavmahlerstud00stefuoft.pdf (http://www.mediafire.com/file/aebiuxp5tso/gustavmahlerstud00stefuoft.pdf)

 :)
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: J.Z. Herrenberg on August 28, 2008, 10:16:48 PM
I massively recommend reading "Die geistige Welt Gustav Mahlers in systematischer Darstellung" and "Mahler und die Symphonik des 19. Jahrhunderts in neuer Deutung".

Seconded.
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: greg on August 29, 2008, 11:59:00 AM
An old book on Mahler in the public domain...
http://www.mediafire.com/file/aebiuxp5tso/gustavmahlerstud00stefuoft.pdf (http://www.mediafire.com/file/aebiuxp5tso/gustavmahlerstud00stefuoft.pdf)

 :)
Awesome!  :o
thanks for this......
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: J.Z. Herrenberg on August 29, 2008, 12:14:19 PM
An old book on Mahler in the public domain...
http://www.mediafire.com/file/aebiuxp5tso/gustavmahlerstud00stefuoft.pdf (http://www.mediafire.com/file/aebiuxp5tso/gustavmahlerstud00stefuoft.pdf)

 :)

Paul Stefan's book is a classic. It gives you a very vivid sense of how Mahler's music appeared to his contemporaries. Excellent service, John!
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: greg on September 10, 2008, 04:07:54 PM
A gift for everyone, whether they like it or not: Das Klangende Lied!

http://www.youtube.com/watch/v/8Eto2qXJhuQ&feature=related
http://www.youtube.com/watch/v/ky8t9jPp7Ao&feature=related
http://www.youtube.com/watch/v/7J_9emospyc&feature=related
http://www.youtube.com/watch/v/jN8tnEJv-eA&feature=related
http://www.youtube.com/watch/v/F2shtzY3cV8&feature=related
http://www.youtube.com/watch/v/0Z2dPeyuzb0&feature=related
http://www.youtube.com/watch/v/IMX9VLKWgMw&feature=related








I want people's opinions about this work. I never bought any of the recordings because I've heard clips and wasn't impressed, plus most of them are old and there's hardly any reviews. Now, after listening, it feels kinda weird. I've heard every note of this guy's music that is available..... :(

It does seem like an "amateur" work, but there's flashes of genius here and there and lots of foreshadowing of his symphonies.  In fact, during one part (either the 3rd or 5th video), he wrote something similar to what he does in the second- some marching band-like thing playing out of tempo and in another key, kinda like Ives, I guess. Possibly the most discordant section of Mahler's music, period.

It of course sounds like his early songs- don't have the Piano Quartet in mind, because it doesn't sound too much like that. It was written in 1880 (he was 20) and the Piano Quartet was from 1876 (when he was 16), so it sounds like he went from sounding just like Schumann to creating his own style in 4 years.
I thought the whole thing was pretty much schizophrenic-sounding- up and down, all over the place. It sounds like he was at an age where he had lots of ideas, but didn't know how to refine them.
 And if you notice, he tends to end everything in a low drone, which sounds like someone not having an idea how to connect to extremely different passages together. He does this so much throughout the work that it almost seems annoying. This reminds me so much of my own music, lol! (imaginative, but unrefined in a bad way). If he can come from this, and then write his symphonies, makes me feel good about what a creative artist can develop with enough effort .

Here's the score, except it's the wrong version:

http://imslp.info/files/imglnks/usimg/c/cf/IMSLP21326-PMLP49216-Mahler_-_Das_Klagende_Lied__orch._score_.pdf
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: M forever on September 10, 2008, 04:22:03 PM
Das Klangende Lied!

"Klangende" is not an existing German word.
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: The new erato on September 11, 2008, 07:34:02 AM
Maybe it should be "Das Klingende Lied"?
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: Gustav on September 11, 2008, 08:00:47 AM
This reminds me so much of my own music, lol! (imaginative, but unrefined in a bad way). If he can come from this, and then write his symphonies, makes me feel good about what a creative artist can develop with enough effort .

Lol, this part is simply hilarious!
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: greg on September 11, 2008, 10:18:48 AM
So everyone is going to be stupid and not watch it?
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: Scots John on September 11, 2008, 01:35:10 PM
So everyone is going to be stupid and not watch it?

Your subsequent review doesn't inspire me to listen but I did anyway (to most of it.)
The performance is fine.  Some passages of the music as you rightly say found its way into his symphonic work.
Pretty good for a 20 yr old.  Don't know how else to respond. 
 :P
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: greg on September 11, 2008, 01:39:39 PM
Your subsequent review doesn't inspire me to listen but I did anyway (to most of it.)
The performance is fine.  Some passages of the music as you rightly say found its way into his symphonic work.
Pretty good for a 20 yr old.  Don't know how else to respond. 
 :P
Yeah, I suppose it wouldn't exactly inspire people to listen.  ;D
But it's a very obscure work, only about 1,000 views each video... just wonder why it isn't sought after more.
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: PSmith08 on September 11, 2008, 03:30:50 PM
I want people's opinions about this work. I never bought any of the recordings because I've heard clips and wasn't impressed, plus most of them are old and there's hardly any reviews. Now, after listening, it feels kinda weird. I've heard every note of this guy's music that is available..... :(

It does seem like an "amateur" work, but there's flashes of genius here and there and lots of foreshadowing of his symphonies.  In fact, during one part (either the 3rd or 5th video), he wrote something similar to what he does in the second- some marching band-like thing playing out of tempo and in another key, kinda like Ives, I guess. Possibly the most discordant section of Mahler's music, period.

It of course sounds like his early songs- don't have the Piano Quartet in mind, because it doesn't sound too much like that. It was written in 1880 (he was 20) and the Piano Quartet was from 1876 (when he was 16), so it sounds like he went from sounding just like Schumann to creating his own style in 4 years.
I thought the whole thing was pretty much schizophrenic-sounding- up and down, all over the place. It sounds like he was at an age where he had lots of ideas, but didn't know how to refine them.
 And if you notice, he tends to end everything in a low drone, which sounds like someone not having an idea how to connect to extremely different passages together. He does this so much throughout the work that it almost seems annoying. This reminds me so much of my own music, lol! (imaginative, but unrefined in a bad way). If he can come from this, and then write his symphonies, makes me feel good about what a creative artist can develop with enough effort .

You are aware that Mahler revised Das klagende Lied heavily over twenty years or thereabouts, right? I don't know which version this is, but the piece wasn't premiered until 1901, better than twenty years after he first set down to compose it. With that in mind, it's roughly contemporary with the 3rd. For that reason alone, I tend to think of Das klagende Lied as something more than charming and prescient juvenilia.
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: greg on September 12, 2008, 10:15:56 AM
You are aware that Mahler revised Das klagende Lied heavily over twenty years or thereabouts, right? I don't know which version this is, but the piece wasn't premiered until 1901, better than twenty years after he first set down to compose it. With that in mind, it's roughly contemporary with the 3rd. For that reason alone, I tend to think of Das klagende Lied as something more than charming and prescient juvenilia.
It's the 1880 original version. I wouldn't be surprised if his revised version sounded better.
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: Lilas Pastia on September 12, 2008, 02:07:01 PM
Are you sure it's the original version *1880).  Wiki has this to say about the tortured compositional history of the work:

Quote
The first performance did not take place until 1901, by which time Mahler had subjected his original score to several major revisions. The first revision of the work took place in the second half of 1893. This featured a significant reduction and re-arrangement of the orchestral and vocal forces, with the number of harps in the first part being reduced from six (!) to two, and the vocal soloists from eleven to four. The boys’ voices were also removed. The off-stage orchestra, which had played an important role in the original score, was also completely removed from the second and third parts. In spite of having lavished such detailed effort on revising the work's first part, Mahler then decided (Autumn 1893) to omit it completely.

Further revisions to what was now a work in two parts (after the omission of the original first part) were made between September and December 1898. At this point, Mahler’s previous decision to remove the off-stage brass was reversed. The 1898 revisions were in fact so extensive that Mahler had to write out an entirely new manuscript score.

Although it's unmistakably mahlerian, I wouldn't say it's worth losing sleep over. French critics have long advocated the original version, maybe because Boulez recorded it. There's a very strong Mahler streak among French critics, and they happen to have quite particular views of what constitutes an authentic Mahler sound or performance. On the evidence of recorded history and the evolution of tastes, I'd say they have a point, if not chapter and verse. Haitink has staunchly favoured the revised version. In its original garb, I'd say Mahler's Klagende Lied is not that much different form Sibelius' Kullervo symphony.
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: greg on September 12, 2008, 04:01:35 PM
Are you sure it's the original version *1880).  Wiki has this to say about the tortured compositional history of the work:

Although it's unmistakably mahlerian, I wouldn't say it's worth losing sleep over. French critics have long advocated the original version, maybe because Boulez recorded it. There's a very strong Mahler streak among French critics, and they happen to have quite particular views of what constitutes an authentic Mahler sound or performance. On the evidence of recorded history and the evolution of tastes, I'd say they have a point, if not chapter and verse. Haitink has staunchly favoured the revised version. In its original garb, I'd say Mahler's Klagende Lied is not that much different form Sibelius' Kullervo symphony.
Yes, I'm sure unless the person who uploaded the video is lying. It's too small to see from my post, though. Here's the link:
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=8Eto2qXJhuQ

and the scores says this, btw:
Quote
Publisher Info.:

Vienna: Universal Edition, n.d. [1901].
Reprint - Mineola, NY: Dover Publications, 2001.
Copyright:

Public Domain
I had a hard time following along until I remembered  that he rewrote it a bunch of times  :o ;D
Do no one should try to put too much effort to follow along, although there are some interesting spots where you can see he didn't do much else besides reorchestrate it, so you might see an oboe line in the score being played by strings in the video.

But yeah, supposedly the jury to which he sent the score to for a competition was headed by Brahms. Just listen to the first video, and imagine Brahms going crazy about it...... hmmm, is it just me or is that hard to imagine?  ;D
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: greg on September 18, 2008, 01:48:48 PM
http://www.youtube.com/watch/v/KVd7NToZiaw


Quote
   

Mahler Plays Mahler

"Ging Heut' Morgens ubers Feld"
"Ich ging mit Lust durch einen grunen Wald"
Symphony # 4 (4th movement)
Symphony # 5 (1st movement)

Gustav Mahler, piano
Pickwick CD GLRS 101

treble clef graphicGustav Mahler represents one of the keenest losses to early classical recordings. Despite his present fame as the last of the great German symphonic composers, during his lifetime Mahler was better known as a profoundly influential conductor. His obsessive intensity on the podium fueled headstrong, expressive performances of huge individuality. Mahler was the last and perhaps most extraordinary of all the authentic late-romantic conductors, who never hesitated to mold or even rewrite music to their own taste. Mahler records would provide an enormously valuable key toward reconstructing and understanding the lost performing style of his era. And yet, Mahler died in his prime in 1911, at age 51, without having recorded.

So what's this? Nothing less than Mahler himself at the keyboard--and in digital stereo!

True, these are piano rolls, a medium with a deservedly bad reputation. The integrity of many rolls was compromised by extensive doctoring, both to correct wrong or mistimed notes and to "enhance" the original with new harmonies, runs and doublings. Even when uncorrupted, standard rolls had no quality, as all notes sounded at the same volume and with the same flat, staccato tone. Fine for a barroom, but hardly genuine art.

Mahler's rolls, though, were made in the new Welte-Mignon system, perfected in Germany in 1903. How did it work? We really don't know, since the proprietary process was a closely-guarded secret and the equipment was secured after each session. Apparently, the master was made with ink markings that were then punched as two sets of holes--one for each note and the other for its volume. The latter was a crucial component which transformed the bland mechanical clanking of the traditional piano roll into a genuine performance which replicated the accents, dynamics and overall atmosphere of the original.

Reproduction is achieved not through a player piano, but with a so-called "vorsetzer" unit, which actually plays a concert grand using felt-tipped "fingers" activated by varying degrees of pneumatic pressure triggered by the sets of holes. The result is uncannily realistic and far superior to the limited range of the acoustic disc in conveying the "touch" of an artist. Except for a slight pumping background sound of the pneumatic bellows, the present disc has the full nuance of a genuine performance.

Mahler recorded all four of his rolls in a single session on November 9, 1905. He chose two of his songs, the vocal finale to his Symphony # 4 and the first movement of his Symphony # 5 (which he had completed the previous year), all in arrangements for piano solo. The readings are fast, impulsive and full of highly individual touches, presumably suggesting the manner in which Mahler intended his own works to be interpreted--far more akin to the hysterical passion of Horenstein or Bernstein than the cool modern approach of von Karajan or Haitink.

It may be unfair to infer Mahler's podium style, particularly with respect to other composer's works, from his piano rolls. It is far easier to whip up instantaneous interpretive extremes using only your own hands on a piano than to impart such impulsive desires to an entire ensemble. But whether or not Mahler actually conducted this way, the rolls are our only tangible evidence of his artistic ideals and thus provide invaluable guidance to modern performers who strive for authenticity. And such authenticity is important, as composers of every era wrote with the intention that their works would be performed by artists familiar with the aesthetic norms of their time.

The Mahler rolls themselves consume only 26 minutes of the CD. Also included are performances by modern vocalists using Mahler's rolls as accompaniment. The disc concludes with a half-hour 1960s program of reminiscences of Mahler by retired associates. While this extra stuff is interesting to hear once, it's hardly of the same import as Mahler's performances. The CD would have been a far better value had it included Welte-Mignon rolls by Debussy, Saint-Saens, Grieg or other crucial but underrecorded masters whose performing styles defined their era.
 

Copyright 1994 by Peter Gutmann



non-piano roll:

http://www.youtube.com/watch/v/gdMWb8l3MP0&NR=1
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: greg on September 18, 2008, 02:15:19 PM
it's tough out there, being a trumpet player.


http://www.youtube.com/watch/v/fgzsPoTp2iA&feature=related
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: knight66 on September 20, 2008, 12:34:31 AM
The new Gergiev 7th is getting excellent reviews. I rather thought I would stop at his 1st and 6th....but I can see the piggy-bank will get another little raid. It sounds like it will be an excellent contrast with the Bertini and Abbado Chicago versions. Has anyone heard the Gergiev yet?

Mike
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: Sergeant Rock on September 20, 2008, 03:33:05 AM
The new Gergiev 7th is getting excellent reviews. I rather thought I would stop at his 1st and 6th....but I can see the piggy-bank will get another little raid. It sounds like it will be an excellent contrast with the Bertini and Abbado Chicago versions. Has anyone heard the Gergiev yet?

Mike

I haven't heard Gergiev's Seventh, but if you want a performance that really contrasts with Bertini and Abbado, let me suggest Klemperer  ;)

Sarge
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: knight66 on September 21, 2008, 01:43:08 AM
Sarge, Thanks....I am such a sucker in this corner of the market. I always think I have enough, then another enticing suggestion comes along. I have Klemperer's DLvDE and 2nd, I don't know why I have not sought out more, I found both of those performances to be as good as any.

Mike
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: M forever on September 21, 2008, 03:33:23 PM
I have the live recording from March 7, 2008, at the Barbican, which is where this CD is sourced from, I believe, although I wonder if they also did touchup sessions because there are some serious accidents in some places. The most "obvious" is at the beginning of the finale where the trumpets try to play it like Star Wars, but fail rather heroically...after all, Murphy retired last year.
Still, overall, the playing is predictably very good. The booboos that are there can be excused because it is a very "live", very flexible and involved performance. It is also rather well directed which, I have to admit, suprised me since this is a piece which many conductors have a hard time figuring out and making it work coherently. Gergiev, with his well deserved reputation of being everywhere, but also leaving some of the prep work to assistants and showing up at the last minute, is not someone who I would have expected to be able to shine some light into this complex and, at times, a little incoherent score. But he holds everything well together and makes his musical points.
So overall, this is a rather good performance. But then again, especially when you listen to it a second time, you notice that as good as things look, they mostly happen on the surface and there is little attention to the fine inner detail and the layering of textures. Rather, the melodic surfaces are cleverly shaped and highlighted, but there is not much probing into the depths of the music.
The high level of playing, despite the occasional live booboos, is not really something which makes this performance particularly interesting since that kind of playing is pretty much standard in many places today.
This must have been a nice concert to go to, but it is not really a recording I "need" to have to refer to. There are a number of overall much more interesting ones.
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: Daedalus on September 22, 2008, 11:43:21 AM
Good evening all,

I was wondering what you all make of Mahler's 10th Symphony (Deryck Cooke performing version)?

I have been saving the 10th Symphony as the last piece of Mahler's music that I discover. To be honest, I have been putting it off for a long time now and finally decided to give it a go after listening to other composers and having a little break from Mahler.

I knew the first movement very well already as it has been an extra in some of the recordings of the 9th that I have purchased. I understand this to be the only movement of the symphony that was fully orchestrated by Mahler.

The question I have is, how much of the rest of the symphony is actually Mahler?

From what I've read, the symphony has been rejected (bar the first movement) by a majority of Mahler interpreters, such as Walter, Bernstein, Abbado, Haitink, Boulez, Kubelik. Some even refuse to perform the opening movement.

I have only listened to the piece once and have yet to make my mind up on the issue. On the whole, I feel that there are some very Mahlerian moments and his musical idiom occasionally shines through. There are some great passages of music although I have yet to get a feeling for how the overall piece ranks in comparison to the rest of his symphony cycle (i.e. in my personal opinion).

As a huge lover of Mahler's music, I had to hear this symphony. I do wonder about Mahler's intentions for the symphony and about Cooke's decision making process for the choices he has made in terms of orchestration in the movements that were scarcely completed.

I would be really interested to hear some of your opinions about this controversial symphony.

D.
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: Brewski on September 22, 2008, 12:13:51 PM
I'm a huge fan of the Tenth Symphony, even if to my brain and ears it feels like (roughly) "90 percent Mahler."  (Or maybe 80%.)  To me the bottom line is: would I rather "not hear" the score?  No, since as you note, there is plenty of Mahler buried in there.  I just listen with the process firmly understood: that it is a second person's fleshing out of Mahler's notes.  After hearing the piece over time, I have gotten to like it immensely.

Although I can totally empathize with those who debate whether the Tenth is "real" Mahler, personally I just like the music, especially since it hints at even more radical developments if he were to have lived and written more symphonies.  So in addition to the musical pleasure, there is some historical value, even knowing that Cooke made some choices that Mahler probably wouldn't have.  (And of course, we will never know.) 

I initially heard the first movement and think it stands fine on its own (for those who want to perform only the completed one), but I do like (and respect) what Cooke achieved.  As long as I'm aware that what I'm hearing is basically "Mahler-Cooke," I don't mind that it's essentially a collaborative project. 

--Bruce
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: karlhenning on September 22, 2008, 12:21:59 PM
That's so po-mo of you, Bruce  ;D
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: Brewski on September 22, 2008, 12:24:20 PM
I should add that I've heard the Tenth live at least twice that I can recall, by two conductors who make a very good case for it: Chailly and Rattle.  The latter, especially, makes it sound incredibly modern, really emphasizing its weird sonorities and structure.  

Just saw Karl's post... ;D

--Bruce
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: greg on September 22, 2008, 02:33:03 PM
The only other non-Cooke recording I've heard is this:
(http://ecx.images-amazon.com/images/I/41ljYoZDFIL._SL500_AA280_.jpg)

Just stick with the Cooke.  :-\
The only differences I remember hearing were orchestration and a few dynamic adjustments, like near the end, when you hear that powerful F# major chord with the G# on top, it's actually quiet in this version, which seemed odd to me. The inner movements are probably very different, but I don't listen to them much so I'm not sure. They don't seem that great, but since they're so incomplete I'm sure he could've made them as good as anything else given time.
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: PerfectWagnerite on September 22, 2008, 02:46:38 PM

I would be really interested to hear some of your opinions about this controversial symphony.

D.
I think it is a great work, regardless of whether it is Cooke, Wheeler, or anyone else putting the finishing touches on it. The ideas and themes are all by Mahler and no one can disguise the genius, the symmetry, and the spontaneity of the music. If you don't think Mahler is capable of matching the level of inspiration he had shown in the 9th symphony then this work will convince you otherwise.
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: Senta on September 22, 2008, 05:41:47 PM
I like the 10th a LOT, as long as you appreciate it for what it is, you will discover there are a lot of amazing ideas, with some some differing opinions on where they lead in the various completions. Beside the often used Cooke version, I enjoy Barshai's recontruction attempt, recorded with the JDP and paired with M5. I find it well-thought out and it is also very well-played, very involved.

Just saw this:

A new 5th out last month :

(http://ecx.images-amazon.com/images/I/611painH%2B6L._SS400_.jpg)

Short review here, off the Times :

http://entertainment.timesonline.co.uk/tol/arts_and_entertainment/music/cd_reviews/article4248791.ece (http://entertainment.timesonline.co.uk/tol/arts_and_entertainment/music/cd_reviews/article4248791.ece)

Well, huh...I didn't know this existed. I'd be curious to hear it. I saw van Zweden do this recently for the Dallas season opening ...my first time to hear the 5th live.

I didn't know what to expect never having heard van Zweden's work, but it was an incredibly thrilling performance live, often for the sheer derring-do. If the 2nd mvmt is "moving stormily"...these sailors must have gotten rather seasick, because I have perhaps never heard such extremes of tempo there. He pushed them very hard tempo-wise in the outbursts, but the orchestra matched every bit of the energy...their chemistry was great. The 1st mvmt had these turn-on-a-dime tempo changes too, and I thought the opening especially was rushed, I prefer a slower Trauermarsch myself. The last 3 mvmts were excellent though, very musical and not as frantic, the Adagietto was taken at a comfortable tempo and had great dynamic work.

My only real complaint was just this feeling of oh-so-closeness in the 1st two mvmts, as he would accelerate so much, and generate such energy from the orchestra...but then get carried away and not pull back at the end of phrases to let that energy pummel you...lots of tension with little release. But on the whole, it was pretty darn good, and played extremely well too, with lots of exuberant and colorful sound from all sections.

Is that 5th only available at the LPO website? I saw his Beethoven mentioned, he has already recorded LvB 5th and 7th with the Dallas SO, sold at their site. I didn't get it while there, as those pieces are just so overrecorded, but it might be something to check out.
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: karlhenning on September 23, 2008, 02:31:22 AM
So these are "completions" and not 'simply' orchestrations of complete Mahler compositions?

But the first movement of the Tenth is entirely Mahler's work?
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: Sergeant Rock on September 23, 2008, 03:09:39 AM
So these are "completions" and not 'simply' orchestrations of complete Mahler compositions?

But the first movement of the Tenth is entirely Mahler's work?

"Mahler's original manuscript consists of all five movements laid out and numbered, with every bar continuous from first to last, in four-stave open score with a few instrumental cues. The first half of the symphony, up to the thirtieth bar of the Purgatorio is also set forth in orchestral score." Jack Diether, from his notes on the Ormandy CD.

Cooke didn't consider his work to be a "completion" but a performing version of the sketch. He did flesh out parts (particularly the last two movements) and orchestrated the parts that Mahler hadn't. I've never had a problem with this. It sounds like Mahler to me (because it is, essentially) and I'm very glad Cooke and others have given us the opportunity to hear, if not Mahler's final thoughts, his first thoughts anyway. And thanks goes to Ormandy, too, who bucked the trend within his generation of conductors and gave us the first and (to my ears) still the best performance of this astonishing symphony.

Sarge
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: karlhenning on September 23, 2008, 03:13:16 AM
Many thanks for the info, Sarge!  I think I was misled by PW's "ideas and themes" comment, which suggested to me that other hands were dithering with 'em.
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: lukeottevanger on September 23, 2008, 03:26:23 AM
Yes, I was going to type much the same as Sarge did, so instead let me simply emphasize it: Cooke explicitly said that he didn't want to offer 'his' version or 'his' completion of Mahler 10 - all he wanted to do was to provide the bare minimum to make Mahler's short score audible in an orchestral garb of the general sort Mahler wrote. He was well aware that if Mahler had finished the piece it would bear little resemblance to his [Cooke's] rendition. So to be fair to Mahler and to Cooke it's best to listen to Cooke's version with this in mind.

I have the full score to Cooke's edition, which includes, at the bottom of the page, Mahler's original sketch, exactly as he wrote it, crossings-out, arrows and all, but type-set so that it's easily legible. From the relationship between this and the full score above it it's clear how restrained Cooke was. What's more, the Cooke score simply doesn't look like Mahler - it's much barer, sparser, and often scanty on the figurations that Mahler would undoubtedly have devised for the interior parts. Cooke was well aware of this, of course.

Barshai fleshes things out a lot more, which is probably why some people seem to prefer him on a visceral level as a listening experience (I do myself). But in order to do so he takes more liberties with Mahler's incomplete short score - very musical ones, of course. There's no problem with this imaginative filling-out, but it's important to understand that it was never the direction which Cooke, with his more musicological attitude, wished to take.
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: lukeottevanger on September 23, 2008, 03:30:32 AM
For illustration, a page of my copy of the Mahler-Cooke, as used long ago on the mystery scores thread:

Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: karlhenning on September 23, 2008, 03:33:03 AM
And, many thanks to you also, Luke!

I have some form of the Mahler Tenth at home, thanks to a kindly neighbor.  And I recall vividly how well I enjoyed the Ninth when Levine led the BSO in that 'un, last season . . . I should make some time for the Tenth soon.
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: greg on September 23, 2008, 12:01:48 PM
For illustration, a page of my copy of the Mahler-Cooke, as used long ago on the mystery scores thread:


You got this from a library, didn't you? You can buy it online for a over a hundred bucks.
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: lukeottevanger on September 23, 2008, 01:55:08 PM
No, it's my own copy. I found it in a second hand bookshop for £5, along with many other goodies that day, I recall....
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: greg on September 23, 2008, 01:59:26 PM
No, it's my own copy. I found it in a second hand bookshop for £5, along with many other goodies that day, I recall....
:-X
where the heck do you go shopping, dreamland?

oh yeah, and a few years ago i found a Penderecki score at a yardsale for tree fiddy........
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: knight66 on September 24, 2008, 10:10:18 AM
M, Thanks for the review of the 7th. I have been away for a few days and had five minutes to dash into an HMV shop....did so, grabbed the disc and when I got to my hotel I opened the bag to discover I had grabbed the 6th....which I already have....and the 7th remains ilusive.

I will return it via another branch soon and I will try to come home with the right one. The reviews I have read don't mention any accidents in the playing, so I guess it got tidied up.

Mike
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: M forever on September 24, 2008, 07:55:51 PM
M, Thanks for the review of the 7th. I have been away for a few days and had five minutes to dash into an HMV shop....did so, grabbed the disc

Well, apparently, you haven't actually read my review.
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: knight66 on September 24, 2008, 09:33:24 PM
Yes I did, (Here I would insert an emoticon that rolls its eyes), but I read other and more positive reviews and it seems like it will give me a real contrast with the two versions I have.....and it does not cost much to try it out; roughly what I spend in London on a sandwich and a drink. From having listened to the broadcast; I won't however be going near his 8th.

Mike
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: Guido on September 25, 2008, 06:05:16 AM
:-X
where the heck do you go shopping, dreamland?

oh yeah, and a few years ago i found a Penderecki score at a yardsale for tree fiddy........

I think I know the place that Luke is referring to, and in many ways it is!
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: lukeottevanger on September 25, 2008, 06:29:17 AM
In this case, I doubt you are - it was a now-closed-down secondhand bookshop in Bury St Edmunds; the same glut of scores also contained (among other things) a few major John Adams scores, £5 each (Harmonium, Harmonielehre, Chairman Dances, Shaker Loops.....); I bought them all even though I already had some of them  ;D Can't harm to have two copies of Harmonium, can it?  0:)

But the one I believe you are referring  to - Brian Jordan's in Cambridge - is probably the scene of my greatest score buying triumphs. The complete Des Canyons aux Etoiles (all three volumes) for £20; Turangalila for £8; Takemitsu's A Flock Descends into the Pentagonal Garden for £5. And so on....
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: Guido on September 25, 2008, 07:21:50 AM
Yes Brian Jordan's is what I was referring to. A fantastic place. Haven't quite got things as good as yours yet but I did get the full score to Bliss' cello concerto for £3 (my best buy so far) and several cello/piano pieces for even less.
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: lukeottevanger on September 25, 2008, 07:25:52 AM
You realise that if you and I both went 'upstairs at Brian's' at the same time we would automatically become sworn enemies fighting over the same scores. Either that or some strange space-time thing would happen and the universe would implode.

I forgot - Suk's A Summer's Tale, a huge and gorgeous-looking score, £15. That one made me very happy. Oh, and at the Bury shop where I got the Mahler 10 and all the Adams, Elgar's Gerontius in the big critical edition that sells for about £100. For £5.  8) 8) 8)
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: Guido on September 25, 2008, 07:51:26 AM
Quote
You realise that if you and I both went 'upstairs at Brian's' at the same time we would automatically become sworn enemies fighting over the same scores. Either that or some strange space-time thing would happen and the universe would implode.

Fact.

Quote
I forgot - Suk's A Summer's Tale, a huge and gorgeous-looking score, £15. That one made me very happy. Oh, and at the Bury shop where I got the Mahler 10 and all the Adams, Elgar's Gerontius in the big critical edition that sells for about £100. For £5.

That's a truly astonishing find!
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: greg on September 25, 2008, 09:56:34 AM
You know what, screw you guys.
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: lukeottevanger on September 25, 2008, 10:05:04 AM
Greg, didn't the mystery score thread give you a faintest clue that I'm a bit of a score addict?  ;D
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: karlhenning on September 25, 2008, 10:06:36 AM
Greg, dude, keep cool!
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: greg on September 25, 2008, 10:30:38 AM
I'm so jealous, I might have to devise a plan to break into Luke's house and steal all of his scores.......


pst, pst, Karl, you got any ideas?
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: lukeottevanger on September 25, 2008, 10:42:32 AM
An easier option would be to wait until every page of my scores has appeared on the mystery scores thread. May take quite a while, however.
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: imperfection on September 25, 2008, 08:02:37 PM
lukeottevanger, is your avatar in any way related to East Asian philosophy? I think I've seen that symbol somewhere, and it's got something to do with .
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: Joe_Campbell on September 25, 2008, 08:47:05 PM
lol...I look forward to his answer! ;D
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: lukeottevanger on September 25, 2008, 11:32:36 PM
In some ways, and very consciously, yes. And in other ways, no. See my composer's thread from this page and on for a couple more... (http://www.good-music-guide.com/community/index.php/topic,44.msg225088.html#msg225088)  ;D
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: imperfection on September 26, 2008, 12:16:03 PM
In some ways, and very consciously, yes. And in other ways, no. See my composer's thread from this page and on for a couple more... (http://www.good-music-guide.com/community/index.php/topic,44.msg225088.html#msg225088)  ;D

Interesting, the dialogue between Emperor Wu and the Chan/Zen teacher is especially so. Thanks.  ;)
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: Opus106 on September 28, 2008, 07:21:36 AM
I'm listening to Mahler's second for the second time in about 10 hours... that's surprising and shocking... this hasn't even happened with Beethoven! (That's probably because I didn't have a recording handy (CD or downloaded) when I listened to those works for the first time. ;) )

I would've laughed my rear end off at this thought a week ago!!!
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: MishaK on September 30, 2008, 04:03:48 PM
I am going to hear Haitink do Mahler 2 with the CSO in a few weeks. Back in 1995/96 Haitink conducted this same work with the CSO which was his last guest appearance with the CSO before being appointed Principal Conductor in 2006. I'm excited to hear them reprise this work. I was in collge when they did it the last time and it was my first live Mahler 2 - unforgettable.
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: imperfection on September 30, 2008, 06:43:08 PM
I am going to hear Haitink do Mahler 2 with the CSO in a few weeks. Back in 1995/96 Haitink conducted this same work with the CSO which was his last guest appearance with the CSO before being appointed Principal Conductor in 2006. I'm excited to hear them reprise this work. I was in collge when they did it the last time and it was my first live Mahler 2 - unforgettable.

Lucky you...hope you enjoy it, but please do report back!
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: Senta on October 01, 2008, 02:45:26 PM
The world is right again...  0:)  ;)  ;D
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: Lilas Pastia on October 01, 2008, 06:36:54 PM
The world is right again...  0:)  ;)  ;D

Meaning so predictable ?  ;)
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: M forever on October 02, 2008, 07:35:15 PM
Lucky you...hope you enjoy it, but please do report back!

I hope he enjoys it, too, but oddly, I said that before, but my good wishes and O Mensch' response were deleted.
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: Joe_Campbell on October 02, 2008, 07:55:11 PM
And mine in the midst as well, though admittedly, it wasn't really a needed comment.
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: Brewski on October 03, 2008, 08:45:48 AM
So back to Mahler.  Here (http://www.musicweb-international.com/SandH/2008/Jul-Dec08/mahler2509.htm) is an interesting review by Bernard Jacobson of the Mahler 8th in Seattle, with Gerard Schwarz and the Seattle Symphony.

--Bruce
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: imperfection on October 03, 2008, 09:14:39 PM
M Forever, I recall that you had a very high opinion on a Mahler 3 recording, but I forgot which one it was. You  said it was one of the best things you've ever heard by anyone, or something to that effect. Was that Chailly/RCO or Boulez or someone else? I want to check it out.
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: M forever on October 03, 2008, 10:33:49 PM
Boulez/WP and Abbado/WP are my top recordings of this symphony because they both get the fairy tale athmosphere and lyrical "Wunderhorn" tone of the music totally "right" and manage to pay attention to all the fine detail while at the same time, everything is put into context. Plus the sound palette of the WP fits this music perfectly, especially the Vienna F horns which are exactly the kind of instrument Mahler heard in his day, and the horns are very prominent in this work. There are many good recordings of this music, but these really stand out clearly. The Chailly recording is very competently done, but I found it rather disappointing because it takes a far too generalized view of the music and only emphasizes the darker, massive aspects of it at the expense of fine detail and lyrical "story telling". The massiveness of the music happens more or less "automatically" in the right places because of the sheer numbers involved and Mahler's extremely carefully layered orchestration. The "devil" is in the detail!
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: imperfection on October 03, 2008, 11:03:55 PM
Boulez/WP and Abbado/WP are my top recordings of this symphony because they both get the fairy tale athmosphere and lyrical "Wunderhorn" tone of the music totally "right" and manage to pay attention to all the fine detail while at the same time, everything is put into context. Plus the sound palette of the WP fits this music perfectly, especially the Vienna F horns which are exactly the kind of instrument Mahler heard in his day, and the horns are very prominent in this work. There are many good recordings of this music, but these really stand out clearly. The Chailly recording is very competently done, but I found it rather disappointing because it takes a far too generalized view of the music and only emphasizes the darker, massive aspects of it at the expense of fine detail and lyrical "story telling". The massiveness of the music happens more or less "automatically" in the right places because of the sheer numbers involved and Mahler's extremely carefully layered orchestration. The "devil" is in the detail!

Thanks for explaining the reason you like them, have you also heard Boulez's 2007 live performance with the Staatskapelle Berlin? The recording is available on symphony share and I would want to know your opinion on it before downloading. Then if I really like it, I'll buy the Boulez/WP.  :D

As for the Abbado/WP, is the one that is part of his complete DG cycle, with the Konzertvereinigung Wiener Staatsopernchor, Jessye Norman as soprano, 1982?
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: M forever on October 03, 2008, 11:32:57 PM
Yes. There is also one later recording with the BP, but the earlier WP recording is more "o the point".

I have the live Boulez recording from 2007 but didn't really get to listen to it yet. The version I have doesn't have so good sound (IIRC, I got it from Operashare). I don't know if the one offered on Symphonyshare is the exact same one, or from a better source. The DG recording, BTW, is also extremely well recorded. It almost sounds like you are in the Muskverein, in row 12 or so.
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: Cato on October 21, 2008, 09:34:47 AM
M Forever's above comment on DGG's engineering certainly holds true with my recent purchase: the Boulez  Mahler  Eighth Symphony.  The organ at the beginning gives the bass in my surround-sound system a work-out it has rarely had!  Plus the clarity of the lines! Marvelous conducting on the part of Pierre Boulez and on that of DGG technicians.

Highly recommended!
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: M forever on October 21, 2008, 02:37:27 PM
Does the organ come from the right side?
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: imperfection on October 21, 2008, 08:01:55 PM
After watching the Resurrection DVD with Staatskapelle Berlin, I find Boulez surprisingly clear in his directions (probably not just only in Mahler), whether in his gestures or musical intent. He is so determined with the way the piece is going to go, you could hear and see that right off the bat. I find that quite interesting as he is a very modernist, difficult composer and musician in general anyways. But then, I wonder, would his gestures really be similar in scope when he's doing Bartok, with all that poly rhythmic stuff going on? And 2nd Viennese school works? I should see how he does it sometime.
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: M forever on October 21, 2008, 08:16:05 PM
But then, I wonder, would his gestures really be similar in scope when he's doing Bartok, with all that poly rhythmic stuff going on? 

Yes. Because orchestral musicians aren't idiots who need the conductor to show them every single rhythmic figure and subdivision. They are highly trained and experienced professionals who can play all that stuff without somebody doing the human metronome for them. In order for the orchestra to play together, they just need the conductor to outline the basic tempo. Actually, they don't even need that. A lot of the the time, orchestras don't play together because, but in spite of the conductor. Most of the coordination is not done by following the man with the stick (or in Boulez' case, without the stick), but by ear and feeling.

Where the good conductors come in is when they shape the tempo and phrasing and expression flexibly, and good conductors often show that in a simple, unmistakeable, to-the-point way which doesn't look all that "spectacular" to the uninformed observers who think the conductor is there to act out the music and the musicians are there to translate his act into sound. But to the informed observers - including the musicians -, that is what counts and what makes the difference between a stiff time beater, or a podium clown, or somebody who looks like he has a constant spastic attack - and a really good conductor who knows what's going on and who can lead a large group of people in coordinated and alive music making.
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: Cato on October 22, 2008, 10:16:31 AM
Does the organ come from the right side?

Concerning the Boulez/DGG  Mahler Eighth: The organ seemingly comes from everywhere, but especially from the bass which I have on the floor on the left/center, because of the nature of the room and our furniture.

And on your last comment: one wonders what Mahler and other conductors looked like from that era, as freedom of phrasing and rubato were supposedly much more evident back then.  I have seen silhouettes of Mahler conducting, and they seem fairly espressivo.
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: karlhenning on October 22, 2008, 10:27:09 AM
Maybe he was mugging for the silhouettist  ;D
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: Cato on October 22, 2008, 10:45:38 AM
Maybe he was mugging for the silhouettist  ;D

Wocka Wocka!   0:)

Let's see...Mahler mugging... :D  Hmmm!
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: M forever on October 22, 2008, 08:44:10 PM
Concerning the Boulez/DGG  Mahler Eighth: The organ seemingly comes from everywhere, but especially from the bass which I have on the floor on the left/center, because of the nature of the room and our furniture.

I see now the recording was actually made in the Jesus-Christus-Kirche in Berlin as a studio recording. I thought it was made in the Philharmonie where the organ is on the right side of the hall, that's why I wondered if it came from there in the recording. But obviously not, because that was made in a different location.

And on your last comment: one wonders what Mahler and other conductors looked like from that era, as freedom of phrasing and rubato were supposedly much more evident back then.  I have seen silhouettes of Mahler conducting, and they seem fairly espressivo.

That doesn't really have anything to do with my last comment.
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: imperfection on October 22, 2008, 09:51:29 PM
Yes. Because orchestral musicians aren't idiots who need the conductor to show them every single rhythmic figure and subdivision. They are highly trained and experienced professionals who can play all that stuff without somebody doing the human metronome for them. In order for the orchestra to play together, they just need the conductor to outline the basic tempo. Actually, they don't even need that. A lot of the the time, orchestras don't play together because, but in spite of the conductor. Most of the coordination is not done by following the man with the stick (or in Boulez' case, without the stick), but by ear and feeling.

Where the good conductors come in is when they shape the tempo and phrasing and expression flexibly, and good conductors often show that in a simple, unmistakeable, to-the-point way which doesn't look all that "spectacular" to the uninformed observers who think the conductor is there to act out the music and the musicians are there to translate his act into sound. But to the informed observers - including the musicians -, that is what counts and what makes the difference between a stiff time beater, or a podium clown, or somebody who looks like he has a constant spastic attack - and a really good conductor who knows what's going on and who can lead a large group of people in coordinated and alive music making.

What do you think about the conductors that have seemingly incomprehensible gestures, like Furtwangler?
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: M forever on October 22, 2008, 09:57:20 PM
Furtwängler didn't have "seemingly imcomprehensive" gestures. For the musicians who played under him, it was very clear what he wanted. But it may not be that easy to understand for or explain to people who don't understand the culture of music making that was behind that.
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: knight66 on October 29, 2008, 01:38:31 PM
Free with my Gramophone subscription mag came a sampler of Super Audio Hybrid discs. The tracks are from various independent labels. The first track is from a new Mahler 5, Jansons and the Concertgebouw. We get seven minutes from the opening. The sound is stunning,up front and rich, I like what Jansons does in that brief few minutes, so I have ordered it. It is on the orchestra's own label.

The release will be around the middle of November.

Mike
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: Wanderer on October 29, 2008, 02:22:01 PM
Free with my Gramophone subscription mag came a sampler of Super Audio Hybrid discs. The tracks are from various independent labels. The first track is from a new Mahler 5, Jansons and the Concertgebouw. We get seven minutes from the opening. The sound is stunning,up front and rich, I like what Jansons does in that brief few minutes, so I have ordered it. It is on the orchestra's own label.

The release will be around the middle of November.

That sounds interesting, Mike. Any more samples worth mentioning?
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: knight66 on October 29, 2008, 02:47:01 PM
Kurt Nystedt: Imortal Bach sung a'capella by Ensemble 96. I have a different disc of theirs, it is a remarkable choir and the arrangements take unexpected twists. That would be well worth investigating, though there are no actual details of the tracks.

There is also a Nielsen disc from Dacapo, Danish National SO, Orchestral Music, lovely piece from Maskarade, I seem to recall the disc got a lot of praise when it came out.

Mike
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: Wanderer on October 29, 2008, 04:07:20 PM
Kurt Nystedt: Imortal Bach sung a'capella by Ensemble 96. I have a different disc of theirs, it is a remarkable choir and the arrangements take unexpected twists. That would be well worth investigating, though there are no actual details of the tracks.

There is also a Nielsen disc from Dacapo, Danish National SO, Orchestral Music, lovely piece from Maskarade, I seem to recall the disc got a lot of praise when it came out.

Mike

Thanks!  :)
The Dacapo disc is on the wish list for some time (as is Langgaard's Antikrist on the same label).
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: knight66 on October 29, 2008, 04:11:09 PM
I bought Lannggard's Spheres music and throughly enjoyed it; but when I bought some symphonies, I found them very conventional and rather dull.

Mike
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: PerfectWagnerite on October 29, 2008, 04:42:46 PM
I bought Lannggard's Spheres music and throughly enjoyed it; but when I bought some symphonies, I found them very conventional and rather dull.

Mike
I found both the symphonies and Spheres not just dull, but unbearably dull, alsolutely positively unlistenable. Somehow this hack is herald as some kind of "composer" is beyond me.
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: Wanderer on October 31, 2008, 12:57:10 AM
I bought Lannggard's Spheres music and throughly enjoyed it; but when I bought some symphonies, I found them very conventional and rather dull.

I still haven't gotten that one.
Concerning the symphonies, I'm also rather underwhelmed. After the bombastic majesty of the first symphony and anxious piety of Fra Dybet (a superb Segerstam issue on Chandos) the (few) others I've tried didn't catch my fancy as much. I'll possibly try the new Dausgaard or some other Segerstam issues in the future.
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: Daedalus on November 24, 2008, 05:44:57 AM
Could anyone tell me where I might be able to find the words to Des Knaben Wunderhorn online?

I can't seem to find them anywhere.  :(

Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: Florestan on November 24, 2008, 06:01:27 AM
Could anyone tell me where I might be able to find the words to Des Knaben Wunderhorn online?

First volume here (http://gutenberg.spiegel.de/?id=5&xid=3246&kapitel=1#gb_found), second volume here (http://gutenberg.spiegel.de/?id=5&xid=3247&kapitel=1#gb_found), third volume here (http://gutenberg.spiegel.de/?id=5&xid=3248&kapitel=1#gb_found). Enjoy!
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: Daedalus on November 24, 2008, 06:04:20 AM
Thank you Florestan.  :)
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: Florestan on November 24, 2008, 06:06:55 AM
Thank you Florestan.  :)

Don't mention.
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: Daedalus on November 24, 2008, 06:28:01 AM
I also made another discovery after some more searching:

http://www.recmusic.org/lieder/

It is called 'The Lied an Art Song Texts Page'. A good resource and not just for Mahler actually.

Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: Sergeant Rock on November 24, 2008, 09:13:39 AM
I found both the symphonies and Spheres not just dull, but unbearably dull, alsolutely positively unlistenable. Somehow this hack is herald as some kind of "composer" is beyond me.

I find both the symphonies and Spheres to be not just interesting, but intensely interesting, absolutely positively listenable. How this wonderful composer got lost during the twentieth century is beyond me. It's good to see his music is finally being heralded with many fine recordings.

Sarge
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: J.Z. Herrenberg on November 24, 2008, 02:20:08 PM
I find both the symphonies and Spheres to be not just interesting, but intensely interesting, absolutely positively listenable. How this wonderful composer got lost during the twentieth century is beyond me. It's good to see his music is finally being heralded with many fine recordings.

Sarge

I love Langgaard's music, too. You mustn't expect Langgaard to develop, though. He is almost post-modern, any style can suit his purpose. His symphonies are therefore a varied bunch in all senses of the word (both positive and negative), and they live in two centuries. Some are backward-looking, but very appealingly so (7, 8, 9 for instance); one is visionary (6), another (15) is in two movements, the first of which is filled with Angst, while the second sets a sturdy marine poem; one symphony is more a piano concerto (3), another one like a Straussian tone-poem (10). And I could go on.

I like them all, but for different reasons. Looking critically I'd say Langgaard's 'best' symphonies are 4, 6, 10, 14 and 16. But if you love his voice, you'll find beauty in everything he wrote. And there are his piano pieces and his giant organ work Messis, too... In short - I don't find Langgaard 'dull' at all. But that this rather quirky and erratic 'ecstatic outsider' from Denmark isn't to everyone's taste I can well imagine...
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: Lilas Pastia on November 26, 2008, 06:25:53 PM
Good comment, Johan. My own taste runs more towards 'early Langgaard' (symphonies 1-5 for example), but there's tons of interesting music in there - as opposed to the tons of notes some Langgaard contemporaries have bequeathed us... ;)
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: greg on December 16, 2008, 08:24:32 PM
i leave a Christmas gift for all Mahler fans:

http://www.billandellie.com/sounds/mahler7.mp3
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: zamyrabyrd on December 25, 2008, 09:58:30 AM
i leave a Christmas gift for all Mahler fans:
http://www.billandellie.com/sounds/mahler7.mp3

Further to Mahler and Christmas, there was a nice surprise under the tree with Myung-Wung Chung on Rai International conducting Mahler's 4th Symphony at La Scala. Apparently today, the 25th it was a rerun but should come on again.

http://www.international.rai.it/tv/programmi/scheda.php?id=638
su Raiitalia 1 mercoledì 24 dicembre 2008 alle 17,30 ora italiana; su Raitalia 2 giovedì 25 dicembre alle 1.45 ora italiana; su Raitalia 3 venerdì 26 dicembre alle 10.30 ora italiana


I really liked the way he held the orchestra together like the center of a timepiece, drawing the energy towards himself and back again, some talent he has...

ZB
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: greg on December 28, 2008, 07:01:48 PM
Further to Mahler and Christmas, there was a nice surprise under the tree with Myung-Wung Chung on Rai International conducting Mahler's 4th Symphony at La Scala. Apparently today, the 25th it was a rerun but should come on again.

http://www.international.rai.it/tv/programmi/scheda.php?id=638
su Raiitalia 1 mercoledì 24 dicembre 2008 alle 17,30 ora italiana; su Raitalia 2 giovedì 25 dicembre alle 1.45 ora italiana; su Raitalia 3 venerdì 26 dicembre alle 10.30 ora italiana


I really liked the way he held the orchestra together like the center of a timepiece, drawing the energy towards himself and back again, some talent he has...

ZB
I'm sure this was a better "gift" than mine.  >:D ;D
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: ChamberNut on January 08, 2009, 07:18:51 PM
Forgive me....I know this question has probably been asked before.

I was absolutely spellbound by Mahler's 6th Symphony tonight, listening on headphones in peace & quiet.  Reading up on the work......it stated that the 2nd movement Scherzo and 3rd movement Andante Moderato (on my Tennstedt/LPO copy), was/is more traditionally played in the other order (2nd mvt. Andante Mod., 3rd mvt. Scherzo).  I cannot imagine listening to it in any other order than what I just heard...

Your thoughts?  What is the current practice of conductors these days?  I am hearing this symphony live in May 2009.   :) 
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: Renfield on January 08, 2009, 07:32:44 PM
NOT THAT QUESTION!

I'm kidding. It's a little too late for me to cogently divulge all my present knowledge on this issue. And it would, of course, still be quite limited compared to what a few other posters might have to say; particularly those with advanced theoretical knowledge.

But suffice to say, between Mengelberg's letters, Alma's insistences, and all sorts of other arguments that have come up to support one approach or the other, it does seem to be largely a matter of the individual conductor's preference, rather than based on any sort of consensus.

(Although there are "blocs" of conductors all doing it the same way.)


Personally, I can see it working both ways. I prefer the Scherzo second, likely because that's how I heard it the first time (via the Karajan/BPO recording, on DG), and how I also heard it the one time I've heard the symphony performed live.

But certainly, whether the progression is from one sort of "march" to another sort of march, then an introspective pause, then the finale - or alternatively a march, then quiet, then a march again into the finale, and towards the final "hammer-blows", it makes sense both ways.


Though obviously, I am both grossly oversimplifying the content, and entirely ignorant of tonal progressions from key X to key Y, etc. :)
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: imperfection on January 08, 2009, 07:36:28 PM
Forgive me....I know this question has probably been asked before.

I was absolutely spellbound by Mahler's 6th Symphony tonight, listening on headphones in peace & quiet.  Reading up on the work......it stated that the 2nd movement Scherzo and 3rd movement Andante Moderato (on my Tennstedt/LPO copy), was/is more traditionally played in the other order (2nd mvt. Andante Mod., 3rd mvt. Scherzo).  I cannot imagine listening to it in any other order than what I just heard...

Your thoughts?  What is the current practice of conductors these days?  I am hearing this symphony live in May 2009.   :) 

IIRC, you are the fellow from B.C., right? The Vancouver symphony is playing it in June this year :) I'm planning to go too.
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: Renfield on January 08, 2009, 08:07:20 PM
IIRC, you are the fellow from B.C., right? The Vancouver symphony is playing it in June this year :) I'm planning to go too.

Who is conducting? :)
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: Brewski on January 09, 2009, 10:38:31 AM
Forgive me....I know this question has probably been asked before.

I was absolutely spellbound by Mahler's 6th Symphony tonight, listening on headphones in peace & quiet.  Reading up on the work......it stated that the 2nd movement Scherzo and 3rd movement Andante Moderato (on my Tennstedt/LPO copy), was/is more traditionally played in the other order (2nd mvt. Andante Mod., 3rd mvt. Scherzo).  I cannot imagine listening to it in any other order than what I just heard...

Your thoughts?  What is the current practice of conductors these days?  I am hearing this symphony live in May 2009.   :) 

Wiki has a pretty good section on the continuing debate over the middle movements' order, here (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Symphony_No._6_(Mahler)#Structure).  And here (http://gatheringnote.com/2008/06/26/a-tragedy-in-four-movements/) is an interesting post by Zach Carstensen, on The Gathering Note.

Over the last few decades, I have heard the Sixth live a number of times (maybe 10 or 12) and generally the order has been Scherzo-Andante, which I prefer (scholarship aside for the moment).  Reversing the order to Andante-Scherzo brings perhaps a different kind of mounting hysteria, a longer wind-up to super-charge the finale.  But generally I'm in the camp preferring the Andante as a quiet break, which better sets up being emotionally pushed off the precipice at the end.

Have a great time...it's a marvelous experience live.

--Bruce
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: ChamberNut on January 09, 2009, 10:43:15 AM
Wiki has a pretty good section on the continuing debate over the middle movements' order, here (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Symphony_No._6_(Mahler)#Structure).  And here (http://gatheringnote.com/2008/06/26/a-tragedy-in-four-movements/) is an interesting post by Zach Carstensen, on The Gathering Note.

Over the last few decades, I have heard the Sixth live a number of times (maybe 10 or 12) and generally the order has been Scherzo-Andante, which I prefer (scholarship aside for the moment).  Reversing the order to Andante-Scherzo brings perhaps a different kind of mounting hysteria, a longer wind-up to super-charge the finale.  But generally I'm in the camp preferring the Andante as a quiet break, which better sets up being emotionally pushed off the precipice at the end.

Have a great time...it's a marvelous experience live.

--Bruce

Thank you Bruce!  :)  See, that's what I'm thinking too.....you need that emotional 'rest' or 'break' before that tornado of the fourth movement comes along.  That way too, the Andante is more 'centered' in the symphony  (Approx 35 minutes after the start and 33 minutes before the end.)  Obviously, give or take conductor and orchestra.   :D
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: Brewski on January 09, 2009, 10:55:20 AM
Thank you Bruce!  :)  See, that's what I'm thinking too.....you need that emotional 'rest' or 'break' before that tornado of the fourth movement comes along.  That way too, the Andante is more 'centered' in the symphony  (Approx 35 minutes after the start and 33 minutes before the end.)  Obviously, give or take conductor and orchestra.   :D

Yes, and good point about the timing, too, from a "proportions standpoint."  (Of course, the Andante isn't exactly "quiet" all the way through, but that's another story.  ;D)  In his blog post, Carstensen says he prefers Scherzo-Andante, too. 

And all this is not even taking the key relationships into consideration.  Benjamin Zander has this observation:

Zander argues that the back-to-back A-minor horror of the opening movement and the Scherzo might have intimidated Mahler the performer. The conductor justifies his decision by examining the key relationships among the movements. If the A-minor Scherzo is played as the third movement, the modulation that occurs right at the start of the Finale is harmonically unnecessary. If the third movement is the E Flat Major-major Andante moderato, then the Finale's opening modulation makes sense.   [from Classical Net (http://www.classical.net/music/recs/reviews/t/tlc80586a.php)]

--Bruce
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: ChamberNut on January 09, 2009, 11:01:42 AM
Yes, and good point about the timing, too, from a "proportions standpoint."  (Of course, the Andante isn't exactly "quiet" all the way through, but that's another story.  ;D) 

Yes, true enough.  Yet...it is compared to the other three movements.   ;D

*I noticed a deep brass bass theme or motif midway through the Scherzo, which eerily reminded me of the 'Fafner' motif from Wagner's Siegfried.  Anyone else notice this ???

*Please do not stone and pillage this uneducated music lover.  :D

Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: Sergeant Rock on January 09, 2009, 03:11:30 PM

Your thoughts?  What is the current practice of conductors these days?  I am hearing this symphony live in May 2009.   :) 

We've discussed this in detail in the past. I think you were too busy listening to chamber music to notice  ;)  It's late here but I'll add some thoughts tomorrow when my brain is less alcohol addled (damn those dirty whte mothers)...or maybe I'll find the old threads for you. It is a fascinating question. Like most listeners (and most conductors) I prefer Scherzo first then Andante. I find the music most satisfying that way, both emotionally and technically (i.e., the key relationships).

My next live Sixth will be in Cleveland next May too, directed by Welser-Möst.

Sarge
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: Renfield on January 09, 2009, 06:05:51 PM
And all this is not even taking the key relationships into consideration.  Benjamin Zander has this observation:

Zander argues that the back-to-back A-minor horror of the opening movement and the Scherzo might have intimidated Mahler the performer. The conductor justifies his decision by examining the key relationships among the movements. If the A-minor Scherzo is played as the third movement, the modulation that occurs right at the start of the Finale is harmonically unnecessary. If the third movement is the E Flat Major-major Andante moderato, then the Finale's opening modulation makes sense.   [from Classical Net (http://www.classical.net/music/recs/reviews/t/tlc80586a.php)]

--Bruce

Setting aside the business of modulations and harmonic necessities, I'm intrigued by the phrase "back-to-back A-minor horror".

(Especially given that, IIRC, Mahler published the symphony in the Scherzo-Andante order, but performed it the other way around.)

Is it tenable to assume a conductor could be intimidated by his own work to the extent of altering its structure for performance? Certainly, he did alter the structure - my (rather open) question is whether the intimidation claim could hold.


As far as the argument for "emotional rest" goes, however, I still strongly believe it works either way. At the, however vague and "musicotheoretically unrigorous", (subjective) semantic level, I can see the hypothetical "story" unfolding in both ways.

Whether with a more balanced division of the dramatic content towards a more "Classical" overall shape - march, hysteric march, introspection, catharsis - or a "slanted" arrangement, giving the impression of a march, then a pause, then tumbling down a steep slope all the way into the finale, I find it fairly defensible a notion that it would be more (musical) formal elements to decide what goes first. :)
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: Symphonien on January 09, 2009, 06:07:14 PM
On the issue of the order of the two middle movements, I tend to agree with Benjamin Zander that there are essentially two Mahler 6ths - the first by the composer-Mahler that includes the three hammer blows and the second by Mahler the performer, the superstitious man that was so scared by what he had created that he removed the third hammer blow from the score and thinned out the orchestration at the moment it was intended to fall. The reversal of the order of the middle movements was related to the removal of the third hammer blow. To quote Zander at length from his discussion about the revisions in his Telarc recording:

Quote from: Benjamin Zander
I feel that Mahler's change in the order of the middle movements is related to the man-Mahler's attempt to soften the impact of what he had created. When the first movement is followed by the Scherzo, there is a sort of monolithic horror to it - these two large movements both in A minor. And although the first movement ends in a very triumphant A Major, that triumph is immediately negated just as it always is with the fate motive pulled inexorably down from major to minor. And now, all that the first movement had achieved in arriving at A Major is held up to mockery by the opening of the Scherzo, which grotesquely distorts so much material that was originally heard in the first movement. The two movements in this way become one thing, in much the same way that the first two movements of Mahler's 5th belong together as a single entity, even though they have distinct beginnings and ends. There's a further point about the order of movements that convinces me that Mahler's original is preferable and that is a harmonic one. The Andante is in E Flat Major, the introduction to the fourth movement begins in C Minor, the key most closely related to E Flat, and then in the course of its first ten measures moves to A Minor for a statement of the familiar fate motive... In other words, the opening ten bars of the fourth movement serve as the modulation from E Flat back to the symphony's tonic key of A minor. If you play the Andante as the second movement and the Scherzo as third, then you already are in A minor at the moment the fourth movement begins making the modulation to the key of A minor superfluous.
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: Symphonien on January 09, 2009, 06:27:25 PM
Is it tenable to assume a conductor could be intimidated by his own work to the extent of altering its structure for performance?

Yes, and that is exactly what happened. ;D

However for the most compelling argument the other way, you should read  this booklet  (http://www.posthorn.com/Mahler/Correct_Movement_Order_III.pdf) that has been cited by Slatkin, Jansons, Tilson Thomas and Mehta as justification for performing Andante-Scherzo. It mostly argues based on the fact that Mahler wanted it that way and never changed his mind again to Scherzo-Andante. But to me that was related to the same superstitions that caused him to take out the third hammer blow (i.e. Mahler was wrong :D). But it's interesting reading nonetheless.
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: Renfield on January 09, 2009, 06:30:56 PM
However for the most compelling argument the other way, you should read  this booklet  (http://www.posthorn.com/Mahler/Correct_Movement_Order_III.pdf) that has been cited by Slatkin, Jansons, Tilson Thomas and Mehta as justification for performing Andante-Scherzo.

Very interesting; thank you. :)
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: imperfection on January 09, 2009, 09:40:40 PM
Who is conducting? :)


Bramwell Tovey. Nowhere near the world's foremost Mahler interpreters, but hey, it's Gustav after all. It can't be that bad.  :)
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: Renfield on January 10, 2009, 01:19:32 AM
Bramwell Tovey. Nowhere near the world's foremost Mahler interpreters, but hey, it's Gustav after all. It can't be that bad.  :)

No, indeed it can't. Even when whistled, there are rewards to be had from Mahler's music. ;) :P
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: Lethevich on January 10, 2009, 02:31:02 AM
I have a solution to this problem: extract Mahler's DNA from his bone marrow; clone him, then politely ask him to compose an additional slow movement, then place one on either side of the scherzo 0:)

BTW, I do love the problem he left with the 6th, the discussion it engenders rarely fails to encourage me to relisten to the piece - often with positive results (says the not-very-Mahler-fan...). Regardless of keys, wherever the scherzo is placed, there is still something of an imbalance, emotionally. This is what makes me doubt the claim that this is Mahler's most classically-proportioned symphony - I find the 5th more balanced.
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: greg on January 10, 2009, 06:56:26 AM
I have a solution to this problem: extract Mahler's DNA from his bone marrow; clone him, then politely ask him to compose an additional slow movement, then place one on either side of the scherzo 0:)

is that actually possible?
if only it were so...
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: ChamberNut on January 10, 2009, 01:46:43 PM
We've discussed this in detail in the past. I think you were too busy listening to chamber music to notice  ;)   Like most listeners (and most conductors) I prefer Scherzo first then Andante. I find the music most satisfying that way, both emotionally and technically (i.e., the key relationships).

My next live Sixth will be in Cleveland next May too, directed by Welser-Möst.

Sarge

I was most certainly neck deep in chamber music.   0:)  I sent an email to our conductor (Alexander Mickelthwate, Winnipeg Symphony Orchestra) to get his thoughts and plans for the May performance.  :)  He has taken the time to respond to me in the past, so I hope he'll do so again.
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: Dundonnell on January 11, 2009, 02:46:16 PM
Over the past hour I have been watching and listening to the last movement of the 'Resurrection' on YouTube in performances by Bernstein, Rattle, Abbado, Sinopoli and Neeme Jarvi.

The two performances which (once again) made most impact on me were the famous Bernstein from Ely Cathedral with the London Symphony Orchestra filmed in 1973-

http://uk.youtube.com/watch?v=07oLJ35Xzwo

and Simon Rattle's farewell concert with the City of Birmingham Symphony Orchestra in 1998-

http://uk.youtube.com/watch?v=_HpWDQsNJ3k

I am not normally a great admirer of Rattle but this performance is utterly glorious!

The last few minutes of this great symphony must be amongst the most sublime pages of music ever written!!

I must confess that the tears were pouring down my cheeks :) :)
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: Sergeant Rock on January 11, 2009, 02:58:50 PM
The last few minutes of this great symphony must be amongst the most sublime pages of music ever written!! I must confess that the tears were pouring down my cheeks :) :)

I think one has to have a heart of stone not to be intensely moved by that glorious peroration.

Sarge
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: ChamberNut on January 11, 2009, 04:54:08 PM
The last few minutes of this great symphony must be amongst the most sublime pages of music ever written!!

I agree wholeheartedly!
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: Salome on January 12, 2009, 01:15:32 AM
The Mahlerfest article : 'Myth and Reality in Mahler's Sixth Symphony' by Jeffrey Gantz contains an excellent discussion of some of the enduring questions surrounding Mahler's 6th.

http://www.mahlerfest.org/mfXVI/notes_myth_reality.htm

Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: greg on January 12, 2009, 01:14:15 PM
The Mahlerfest article : 'Myth and Reality in Mahler's Sixth Symphony' by Jeffrey Gantz contains an excellent discussion of some of the enduring questions surrounding Mahler's 6th.

http://www.mahlerfest.org/mfXVI/notes_myth_reality.htm




that was a good read.
I like this paragraph at the end
Quote

     Commentators perhaps looking to Mahler to confirm their own view of existence have not hesitated to accept the Sixth's "Tragic" subtitle. Wilhelm Furtwängler labeled this symphony "the first nihilist work in the history of music." Bruno Walter argued that it "ends in hopelessness and the dark night of the soul . . . the 'other world' is not glimpsed for a moment." Leonard Bernstein described the Finale as the "catastrophe of homo sapiens himself."
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: Senta on February 01, 2009, 09:27:33 PM
Free with my Gramophone subscription mag came a sampler of Super Audio Hybrid discs. The tracks are from various independent labels. The first track is from a new Mahler 5, Jansons and the Concertgebouw. We get seven minutes from the opening. The sound is stunning,up front and rich, I like what Jansons does in that brief few minutes, so I have ordered it. It is on the orchestra's own label.

The release will be around the middle of November.

Mike

(http://cover6.cduniverse.com/MuzeAudioArt/Large/86/1050586.jpg)

Yes, I am listening to this right now! Brand-new acqusition and finishing a first spin. I got it at a deal on eMusic (and I think it is on other download sites as well).

This is very much worth a listen. The sound is rather cavernous and obscures some detail, but then again it also sounds very "live" and Concertgebouw-ish which is nice. And the playing is simply gorgeous and so lyrical! The interpretation is far more romantic and expansive than I expected, with string playing so lush you could bathe in the sound. And besides the lovely strings, which I mentioned, the wind and brass playing is also spectacular, notably the large trumpet and horn solos which are played so effortlessly with such control and gleaming tone. This has to be one of my favorite interpretations of the 3rd mvmt obligato horn! And the Adagietto is gentle, warm, and flowing, never draggy, displaying well the strings' remarkable depth of sound. Musically this recording is extremely impressive. In fact, it may be one of the most singing and lyrical performances I have perhaps heard of this work.

Sometimes Jansons sacrifices some energy for this goal, and in the difficult 2nd mvmt sometimes the strings and brass don't quite lock in with each other, but very minor peccadillos, which are more than made up for by the amazing richness and magnificence of the performance as a whole.

Note: I also see this is available on SACD, which I guess I will have to trade up to sometime!

(PS: Does anyone have their Mahler 6? And could someone tell me what is on these front covers? ;D It looks like broken candy pieces!)

 
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: Renfield on February 01, 2009, 09:39:11 PM
Greta,

Quoting my note to the Listening Thread, coincidentally from a few days ago:

Hmm...

I'd call this an "eight out of ten" recording, deliberately avoiding numbers for the sake of not awarding it a score as such.

But it's not perfect, nor is it outstanding, mostly due to the slight slackening of pace every once in a while in the latter movements. However, the opening movement is superb, and if the orchestral playing were any more polished, it would reflect itself. :o :P

Do sample for how well Mahler's 5th can be played, but do not sample for how well Mahler's 5th can be performed.


(A shame, as that opening movement, ominously no-nonsense, elicited expectations the rest of the recording did not consistently deliver on. :()


I've been following the Jansons/Concertegbouw cycle, and am generally quite pleased with the results (despite my above grumbling).

Their 6th was very good, something like a moderate cross-breed of Bernstein and Karajan, big and sensitive, but not altogether as over-the-top as Lenny, or as precise as Karajan. Their 1st was also quite good, though Gramophone found it somewhat too ordinary. ::) (I liked it.)


So far, this cycle isn't looking like it's going to top the very best: but it's certainly very welcome in my collection, and no less than interesting.

Finally, the covers are probably pills; crushed pills. :o


Edit:

What makes Jansons' efforts even more interesting for me is that I'm following this cycle in parallel to the faster-progressing (as it's all been recorded) Gergiev, the latter pretty much as far as possible from Janson's aesthetic - but also interesting enough to follow. :)
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: imperfection on February 01, 2009, 11:42:54 PM
I'm starting to like Barbirolli's Mahler very much. So far I have heard his 6th and sampled his 5th, but plan on getting it pretty soon too. The former is a very majestic, grandiose, broad performance - very much like Celibidache's Bruckner, except the Englishman doesn't round off the edges and homogenize every sonority. Where it needs to be rough, Barbirolli hits as hard as anybody else, and where it demands lyricism, he creams your face. It really deserves to be in the Greatest Recordings of The Century series, in my opinion. Now I just hope his 5th will be at least half as good as his 6th.

(http://www.esounds.com/esounds/img/packshots/5099921269028-lt.jpg)
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: Renfield on February 02, 2009, 12:01:27 AM
Barbirolli's 5th is great! Only his 9th is a contender for a better Mahler recording from him, IMO.

(That's not meant to disparage his 6th, also a great reading and great recording. Still, the 5th and 9th are challengers for the top, period. :))
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: knight66 on February 02, 2009, 12:15:10 AM

(That's not meant to disparage his 6th, also a great reading and great recording. Still, the 5th and 9th are challengers for the top, period. :))

Agreed, I have not found another 9th with the emotional sucker-punch that Barbirolli provides, esprcially in the first movement.

BTW I got the Janssons 5th and found it a dit disappointing. Some of it lacks momentum and the second movement especially seems to be affected.

Mike
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: Jay F on February 02, 2009, 10:21:45 AM
(http://cover6.cduniverse.com/MuzeAudioArt/Large/86/1050586.jpg)
(PS: could someone tell me what is on these front covers? ;D It looks like broken candy pieces!)

I was thinking antidepressants.
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: ChamberNut on February 02, 2009, 10:23:47 AM
(http://cover6.cduniverse.com/MuzeAudioArt/Large/86/1050586.jpg)

(PS: And could someone tell me what is on these front covers? ;D It looks like broken candy pieces!)

 

Vitamin C tablets.  ;D
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: Opus106 on February 02, 2009, 10:24:40 AM
Vitamin C# minor, to be precise. ;)
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: ChamberNut on February 02, 2009, 10:27:27 AM
Vitamin C# minor, to be precise. ;)

Ah yes, perhaps they are Flintstone vitamins (I remember them tasting rather sharp :P)
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: greg on February 02, 2009, 12:08:30 PM
Ah yes, perhaps they are Flintstone vitamins (I remember them tasting rather sharp :P)
Those things were yummy! If only it weren't bad for your health to eat through the whole bottle, I'd do it.
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: Senta on February 02, 2009, 01:10:48 PM
Not sure what vitamin pills or candy have to do with Mahler....but anyway...

Yes, it seems that we are all hearing the same things about the Jansons M5 and expressing it in our own ways. (Isn't that fun about a classical forum?!)

I agree wholly with you Renfield and Mike, while I enjoy the performance and find it very impressive, the curious moments of slowing of pace and flagging energy make this one knock off a few points. I think it is perhaps more worthy for how finely and musically the orchestra plays, and how well they follow their conductor.

While maybe not wholly satisfying, it is yet a splendid example of how well this conductor and orchestra are working together.

Now, the real reason I gave the recording a spin last night - was to refresh my ears after this, yes, I bit:

(http://ecx.images-amazon.com/images/I/513Y57TQWYL._SL500_AA240_.jpg)

[[Cue: Opening of Worm Can]]

I don't agree with Hurwitz though didn't love it either, will post thoughts later...still at work..
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: ChamberNut on February 02, 2009, 01:24:02 PM
Not sure what vitamin pills or candy have to do with Mahler....but anyway...


Actually had to do with your own post about how you wondered what was on the cover of a particular Mahler CD jacket.....but anyway...
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: Senta on February 02, 2009, 02:18:53 PM
Actually had to do with your own post about how you wondered what was on the cover of a particular Mahler CD jacket.....but anyway...

LOL...well, rather...what the cover designer thought they had to do with Mahler... ;)
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: imperfection on February 02, 2009, 05:03:55 PM
Barbirolli's 5th is great! Only his 9th is a contender for a better Mahler recording from him, IMO.

(That's not meant to disparage his 6th, also a great reading and great recording. Still, the 5th and 9th are challengers for the top, period. :))

Now I am relieved. Sorry about my wallet, I guess. Also, how would you compare Karajan's live 9th with the Barbirolli 9th?
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: Renfield on February 02, 2009, 11:48:34 PM
Also, how would you compare Karajan's live 9th with the Barbirolli 9th?

"Different". Barbirolli goes for the lyrical jugular, whereas Karajan aims for existential transcendence. 0:)

That is the reason I always recommend the Karajan first, it's a qualitatively different approach to "the problem of Mahler's 9th" (my term, there is no such official problem). But Barbirolli's is probably a good as the straight approach can get - quite certainly so among extant recordings! :)
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: Opus106 on February 04, 2009, 05:57:19 AM
Is there a (special) reason why Mahler included a violin solo in every symphony of his? (Maybe I should rephrase it and say every symphony of his that I have heard, which would be 1, 2, 5, 6 and 9.)
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: Jay F on February 04, 2009, 07:21:25 AM
LOL...well, rather...what the cover designer thought they had to do with Mahler... ;)

What I saw when I looked at those covers were crushed anti-depressants. I don't know what the designer's actual intent was, but in an unrelated article/website/blog, this fellow sees a connection between bipolar illness and Mahler. http://www.mcmanweb.com/mahler.html
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: DavidRoss on February 04, 2009, 08:02:45 AM
[Re. Janssons/RCO]  Does anyone have their Mahler 6?
Not this one, but I do have the Janssons/LSO released recently on LSO Live and acquired during my Mahler Mania binge late this past summer, when I snatched up all of the MTT/SFS recordings so far, plus most of the late Lenny symphonies on DGG, and a few other odds and ends, including the stunningly beautiful Nagano/DSO Berlin Mahler 8th.  I recall admiring the Jannsons 6th quite a bit at the time but haven't heard it since.  Your query reminds me that it's due for another spin, maybe even later today after the Karajan/BP Tapiola (if I find the time after wasting so much here!).
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: Renfield on February 04, 2009, 09:00:47 AM
I recall admiring the Jannsons 6th quite a bit at the time but haven't heard it since.  Your query reminds me that it's due for another spin, maybe even later today after the Karajan/BP Tapiola (if I find the time after wasting so much here!).

For reference: Gramophone apparently thought the two recordings (LSO/RCO) were very similar, if one accounts for the different orchestras.
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: greg on February 04, 2009, 01:19:29 PM
What I saw when I looked at those covers were crushed anti-depressants. I don't know what the designer's actual intent was, but in an unrelated article/website/blog, this fellow sees a connection between bipolar illness and Mahler. http://www.mcmanweb.com/mahler.html
That was an awesome article, and I have to thank you for it.

Quote
Kay Jamison in "Touched with Fire" describes Mahler as cyclothymic, with a strong family history of mental illness - a brother who committed suicide, a sister with death hallucinations, and another brother with grandiose tendencies.
Stuff like that really makes me think. He did say that if it weren't for how he was, his symphonies wouldn't be how they are...


Quote


Undoubtedly, there is a Mahler in our midst, penning strange and incomprehensible music at this very moment, with a disturbing foretaste of things that may eventuate. This time, it may behoove us wake up and listen.
Yeah, that's right, you heard him- listen to the music I will be writing in the future! It's a commandment!  ;D

really, though, if there was a new Mahler out there, i'd like to know!  :o
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: greg on February 04, 2009, 01:26:42 PM
here's an interesting read:
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Cyclothymia


Quote


This disorder is common in the relatives of patients with bipolar disorder
I have a relative with bipolar disorder... is that why I like Mahler so much?  ;D
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: karlhenning on February 04, 2009, 01:36:23 PM
here's an interesting read:
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Cyclothymia

"Heeeeeee . . . has his contradicting views.
Sheeeeeee . . . has her cyclothymic moods . . . ."

(http://ecx.images-amazon.com/images/I/21EQWQCGF9L._SL500_AA240_.jpg)
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: greg on February 04, 2009, 01:38:06 PM
leave it up to Karl to find out how to apply King Cromson lyrics in a Mahler thread  ;D
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: karlhenning on February 04, 2009, 01:38:41 PM
leave it up to Karl to find out how to apply King Cromson lyrics in a Mahler thread  ;D

You gave the assist, lad!
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: imperfection on February 04, 2009, 09:38:08 PM
I can't help but love the Andante from the 6th to death. It is such a stark contrast to the rest of the symphony, which is, catastrophic and bleak. It's hard to find a movement as heart aching as this one...but that's probably because I haven't heard the 9th yet--I know I'm not prepared for it, so I'm saving the best for last.  ;)
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: greg on February 05, 2009, 04:47:52 AM
I can't help but love the Andante from the 6th to death. It is such a stark contrast to the rest of the symphony, which is, catastrophic and bleak. It's hard to find a movement as heart aching as this one...but that's probably because I haven't heard the 9th yet--I know I'm not prepared for it, so I'm saving the best for last.  ;)
Heh, if you feel that way about that movement, you're likely to love the 9th.
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: jwinter on February 05, 2009, 06:34:19 AM
But Barbirolli's is probably a good as the straight approach can get - quite certainly so among extant recordings! :)

Barbirolli's 9th is indeed excellent, I think all of his Mahler is worth hearing.  I think his 6th is my favorite -- the opening march has a rough, dark, brutal quality that really works for this piece.   

For a "straight" 9th I'd also recommend Ancerl & the Czech Philharmonic -- that's a wonderful CD.
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: karlhenning on February 05, 2009, 06:36:54 AM
For a "straight" 9th I'd also recommend Ancerl & the Czech Philharmonic -- that's a wonderful CD.

Hmm, there's a temptation!
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: Sergeant Rock on February 05, 2009, 11:54:25 AM
Hmm, there's a temptation!

Ancerl's Ninth is too "straight" for me, but yeah, it might be just the Ninth for you, Karl. And I mean that in the most positive way.

Sarge
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: greg on February 05, 2009, 12:12:08 PM
Barbirolli's 9th is indeed excellent, I think all of his Mahler is worth hearing.  I think his 6th is my favorite -- the opening march has a rough, dark, brutal quality that really works for this piece.   

For a "straight" 9th I'd also recommend Ancerl & the Czech Philharmonic -- that's a wonderful CD.
Is there a Naxos version of this? That recording sounds familiar- I might've listened to it, or at least bits.

This is all I could find, but it itsn't Naxos:
http://www.amazon.com/Mahler-Symphony-Ancerl-Philharmonic-Orchestra/dp/B00000359H/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&s=music&qid=1233864646&sr=8-1
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: Sergeant Rock on February 05, 2009, 12:16:42 PM
Is there a Naxos version of this?

No, only on Supraphon. It isn't old enough yet for Naxos to steal  ;D

Sarge
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: greg on February 05, 2009, 03:48:37 PM
Oh, I must've been thinking of another recording, then.
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: Cato on February 06, 2009, 04:35:28 AM
No, only on Supraphon. It isn't old enough yet for Naxos to steal  ;D

Sarge

I believe Supraphon has a complete "Ancerl Gold Edition" (or used to at least) which would therefore need to include a Mahler Ninth.

In the good old days, nearly 50 years ago now,  :o  (Oh great!  I needed to remember that!)  I had a recording of the Ninth by the London Symphony with conductor Leopold Ludwig (How much more Germanic could you get with that name?).

If it is still out there, it would qualify as a "straight" Mahler Ninth

As opposed to those with all the detours: maybe somebody wouldn't stop to ask for directions, and just wandered around doing his own thing?   0:)
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: not edward on February 06, 2009, 02:53:08 PM
For a "straight" 9th I'd also recommend Ancerl & the Czech Philharmonic -- that's a wonderful CD.
Seconded with great enthusiasm. I was pointed to this about three or four years ago by Molman, via DavidW, and have been so pleased by the recommendation.

It is indeed a very "straight" reading, but I think he brings out all the emotional depth without any self-indulgent distortions.... and naturally the CzPO winds are amazing. I'm not sure I grasped just how fine a reading it was initially, but the more I listened the more I realized that everything I love in this symphony is superbly brought out here.
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: Marc on February 06, 2009, 03:31:54 PM
Barbirolli's 9th is indeed excellent, I think all of his Mahler is worth hearing.  I think his 6th is my favorite -- the opening march has a rough, dark, brutal quality that really works for this piece.

And don't forget Barbirolli's groaning and moaning!
Frightening!   

For a "straight" 9th I'd also recommend Ancerl & the Czech Philharmonic -- that's a wonderful CD.

Ah! I have that one on vinyl!
I 'learned' to appreciate Mahler 9 thanks to this Ancerl recording, after I listened to this work for the first time, some 21 years ago, at Christmas Day 1987 (Concertgebouw Christmas Matinee, Haitink).

There's also another Czech conductor who has recorded a Ninth that I really like: Libor Pešek, with the Royal Liverpool Philharmonic. Still available, I think, at Virgin Classics.
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: Renfield on February 06, 2009, 03:39:41 PM
And don't forget Barbirolli's groaning and moaning!
Frightening!   

:(

Somehow, I don't mind at all.

Not even Bernstein's "thumps" as he jumps on the podium, let alone Glorious John's subtle groaning; only Gould can get to me, on occasion.
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: Marc on February 07, 2009, 01:29:54 AM
And don't forget Barbirolli's groaning and moaning!
Frightening!
   

:(

Somehow, I don't mind at all.

Not even Bernstein's "thumps" as he jumps on the podium, let alone Glorious John's subtle groaning; only Gould can get to me, on occasion.

My mistake. I should have written:
And don't forget Barbirolli's groaning and moaning!
Frightening!
;D


But I forgot the biggrin. ;D

I don't mind about the moaning, either.
And it doesn't frighten me, either.

On the other hand (since you mentioned him): Gould sometimes annoys me with his humming. I feel that he disturbs Bach's own counterpoint, by adding that extra part to the score. Still, it's one of those qualities that makes Gould's performance unique.
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: Renfield on February 07, 2009, 05:25:41 AM
Still, it's one of those qualities that makes Gould's performance unique.

True enough. :)
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: Wanderer on February 07, 2009, 05:45:07 AM
Still, it's one of those qualities that makes Gould's performance unique.

As unique as having someone humming along their favourite tune while you're trying to listen. Never mind, though, it's technology to the rescue! --> The Glenn Gould De-Vocalizer 2000. (http://www.unpronounceable.com/gould/)

(http://www.unpronounceable.com/gould/media/gould.gif)

Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: Sergeant Rock on February 07, 2009, 07:24:42 AM
:(

Somehow, I don't mind at all.

Not even Bernstein's "thumps" as he jumps on the podium, let alone Glorious John's subtle groaning; only Gould can get to me, on occasion.

While listening to a recording I don't mind any of these reminders that actual human beings are making the music...and responding to it emotionally as I am. I find Gould's humming, yodeling and creaking chair completely endearing...as is Toscanini when he turns a duet into a trio in his Bohème  ;D

My favorite example, though, is Hélène Grimaud's orgasmic moans during the first movement of op.110...incredibly sexy  8)

Sarge
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: DavidRoss on February 07, 2009, 11:13:16 AM
My favorite example, though, is Hélène Grimaud's orgasmic moans during the first movement of op.110...incredibly sexy  8)
Oh, my!  Not what I expected to find on a Mahler thread.

(Pssst, Sarge...is that on the disc with Masur doing PC#4?)
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: Marc on February 07, 2009, 11:33:04 AM
Please, let's be serious and discrete about this, gentlemen! :D

While listening to a recording I don't mind any of these reminders that actual human beings are making the music...and responding to it emotionally as I am. I find Gould's humming, yodeling and creaking chair completely endearing...as is Toscanini when he turns a duet into a trio in his Bohème  ;D

My favorite example, though, is Hélène Grimaud's orgasmic moans during the first movement of op.110...incredibly sexy  8)

Sarge

OK. Endearing, that's a nice word to describe it.
When I watch Bernstein conducting f.i., it certainly gives me some extra positive inspiration.
And this human and emotional element, of which you are speaking, really appeals to me. But in the end I don't recall me saying at any time, after listening to a piece: this is my favourite recording, because of the moaning. ;)
I'm certain that I'd also appreciate Barbirolli's interpretation of Mahler 6 very very much, without his groaning. That's what I wanted to make clear, I think. :)

And, possibly/hopefully my last words about of moaning and groaning in this thread: sure, I believe that Hélène's [:-*] intense orgasms can sound very sexy  .... but I'm not so sure if it really adds something essential to the music she's playing.

I remember once, sitting in the front row, a Dutch conductor moaning, groaning and singing all the time during Bach's Matthäus-Passion. I can assure you: it wasn't easy to endure, almost as tough as carrying the süßes Kreuz.
Then again: if two dashing sopranos would moan during a duetto in Mozart's Così, well, err ....  :-X
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: Marc on February 07, 2009, 11:34:38 AM
As unique as having someone humming along their favourite tune while you're trying to listen. Never mind, though, it's technology to the rescue! --> The Glenn Gould De-Vocalizer 2000. (http://www.unpronounceable.com/gould/)

(http://www.unpronounceable.com/gould/media/gould.gif)

;D
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: Sergeant Rock on February 07, 2009, 12:39:28 PM
Oh, my!  Not what I expected to find on a Mahler thread.

(Pssst, Sarge...is that on the disc with Masur doing PC#4?)

Yep...next time your wife is out of the house, slip that into the player, don some headphones (much more intimate that way), and enjoy  ;D

Sarge
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: Sergeant Rock on February 07, 2009, 12:56:09 PM
... but I'm not so sure if it really adds something essential to the music she's playing.

Well, an added emotional rush, the tangible evidence that I'm sharing an experience with another human being (in Grimaud's Beethoven case, a very attractive human being  ;) )  Is that necessary to the music or my enjoyment of it? Of course not. But, as I've said, I've never found it distracting either. I attend quite a few concerts. Mrs. Rock and I usually sit in the front row. If the sounds musicians make while playing music bothered me, we could never enjoy the events. It's no different at home; I don't demand the players perform in silence.

Sarge
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: Moldyoldie on February 09, 2009, 07:49:32 AM
(Pasted from "What Are You Listening To?")
(http://ecx.images-amazon.com/images/I/41TXP8ST0QL._SL500_AA240_.jpg)
Mahler: Symphony No. 7 "Song of the Night"
San Francisco Symphony Orchestra
Michael Tilson Thomas, cond.
SAN FRANCISCO SYMPHONY (Hybrid SACD)

I've read myriad reviews on Amazon and elsewhere of this Grammy-winning recording -- oh, and I've just heard it for the first time this morning before doing so again.  Where the recordings by Levine/CSO (my introduction to the Mahler No. 7 many years ago), Bernstein/NYPO, and more recently Gielen/SWRSO each brought unique perspectives to this thorny work and made for thoroughly entertaining listening from beginning to end; Michael Tilson Thomas and the San Francisco Symphony Orchestra bring a workmanlike adherence to a score in very vivid sound that ultimately becomes an interminable listen.  Yes, as did another reviewer, I became bored!   With all the strange and wonderful things that go on in this work, that absolutely shouldn't happen!

I'm not patient enough to delineate each and every fine point of non-concurrence with my personal sensibility, but I will say that when I listen to the Mahler Seventh, I want to be transported to a netherworld of demons and delights, where the magic of the music lifts you away from your safe little world and brings you back as if you'd just awoken from a phantasmagorical suspension in time. Unfortunately, I didn't get that here; this is simply too plain-faced and sober an interpretation, despite the fine playing and recording.  With the overall length of this symphony, I don't think moderate differences in playing time from performance to performance have much to do with "effectiveness" -- depth of detailing and persuasive interpretation certainly do!

Another Amazon reviewer I read bemoans the gimmicky spotlighting of the recording scheme, that it doesn't sound "natural". Yes, the prominent brass and percussion are often forward balanced with violins seemingly emanating from somewhere "beneath" them! Levine's recording on RCA was also oddly balanced, but I never found it obtrusive in this macabre musical setting. Frankly, such oddities done subtly and purposefully can add to the charm of this work.
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: DavidRoss on February 09, 2009, 08:10:20 AM
(Pasted from "What Are You Listening To?")

What a strange perspective on this disc!  The sensuousness of both performance and sound quality is one of the reasons this recording is among my favorites of the 7th.  I continue to be thrilled and delighted by the MTT/SFS Mahler cycle, and do not think I'm just blinded by partiality to the local band, else these recordings would not likely enjoy the widespread critical acclaim they've received.  I think I'll pop it in the CD transport right now and crank up the amplifier so I can immerse myself in this heady soundworld!
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: Jay F on February 09, 2009, 10:47:55 AM
(Pasted from "What Are You Listening To?")

What a strange perspective on this disc!  The sensuousness of both performance and sound quality is one of the reasons this recording is among my favorites of the 7th.  I continue to be thrilled and delighted by the MTT/SFS Mahler cycle, and do not think I'm just blinded by partiality to the local band, else these recordings would not likely enjoy the widespread critical acclaim they've received.  I think I'll pop it in the CD transport right now and crank up the amplifier so I can immerse myself in this heady soundworld!
As I wrote in the original thread, I, too, love MTT's M7. It and the M3 are my favorites in his cycle.
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: eyeresist on February 09, 2009, 05:10:17 PM
Moldyoldie, allow me to recomment the famous Tennstedt M7 to you. Plenty of magic and emotion there!
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: Jay F on February 09, 2009, 08:45:54 PM
Moldyoldie, allow me to recomment the famous Tennstedt M7 to you. Plenty of magic and emotion there!
Do you mean the one on EMI or the one from the BBC Legends series? I already have (and love) the EMI, and the BBC version is winging its way across the ocean to me from mdt.
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: musimath on February 11, 2009, 01:26:17 PM
I'd suggest listening to the Ruckert lieder too.

Specially "Ich bin der Welt...". The Janet Baker - Barbirolli reading is deeply moving.
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: DavidRoss on February 11, 2009, 01:30:19 PM
Specially "Ich bin der Welt...". The Janet Baker - Barbirolli reading is deeply moving.
That's my fave!  Welcome to GMG, musimath.  You're off to a good start!
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: eyeresist on February 11, 2009, 06:32:54 PM
Do you mean the one on EMI or the one from the BBC Legends series? I already have (and love) the EMI, and the BBC version is winging its way across the ocean to me from mdt.
I don't know the BBC one. I've been off that series since I bought the Barbirolli M7/Bruckner 9. That M7 has really awful cowbells.
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: imperfection on February 11, 2009, 08:16:51 PM
How do Mahler fans here like Sinopoli's DG set with the Philharmonia? I recall that Michael Schaffer, a very informed former member (that sounded weird) had very nice things to say about it on RMCR a while ago.

(http://4.bp.blogspot.com/_QMIBbvsVy9M/SSWGXbX3XZI/AAAAAAAACT4/9_oDyil_atU/s400/Mahler+integral+de+Sinopoli..jpg)
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: DavidRoss on February 12, 2009, 09:57:57 AM
How do Mahler fans here like Sinopoli's DG set with the Philharmonia? I recall that Michael Schaffer, a very informed former member (that sounded weird) had very nice things to say about it on RMCR a while ago.
He has also praised Sinopoli's Mahler here.  You do know, don't you, that Michael and "M" (or "M Forever") are one and the same?
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: Lethevich on February 12, 2009, 10:28:32 AM
How do Mahler fans here like Sinopoli's DG set with the Philharmonia? I recall that Michael Schaffer, a very informed former member (that sounded weird) had very nice things to say about it on RMCR a while ago.

(http://4.bp.blogspot.com/_QMIBbvsVy9M/SSWGXbX3XZI/AAAAAAAACT4/9_oDyil_atU/s400/Mahler+integral+de+Sinopoli..jpg)

I gave the 7th a try thanks to M's advocacy, and it wasn't just interesting, but very good as well. I haven't heard anyone do the nachtmusik movements like Sinopoli - pure atmosphere, mystery and colour.
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: Brewski on February 12, 2009, 10:32:35 AM
I also like Sinopoli's 7th very much.  Although I don't have the complete set, I have (IIRC) Nos. 2, 5, 7 and 8, and like them all. 

--Bruce
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: Renfield on February 12, 2009, 10:37:45 AM
The Sinopoli is probably one of the few major complete Mahler cycles of note I do not own, yet. But I have heard his 8th, and it (coupled with the praise from M, whose taste mine agrees with) has intrigued me enough to consider the full cycle, despite the price.
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: Jay F on February 13, 2009, 12:02:26 PM
The Sinopoli is probably one of the few major complete Mahler cycles of note I do not own, yet. But I have heard his 8th, and it (coupled with the praise from M, whose taste mine agrees with) has intrigued me enough to consider the full cycle, despite the price.
His 5th and 8th are among my favorites.
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: imperfection on February 13, 2009, 09:50:40 PM
His 5th and 8th are among my favorites.

Could you explain the reasons, please?
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: Jay F on February 14, 2009, 03:13:54 AM
Could you explain the reasons, please?
I don't know the vocabulary for describing music. What I do know is that it took me a long time to find a M5 I actually liked listening to. I mentally rejected both Bernsteins, one by Barbirolli, and I can't remember now how many others, before I heard Sinopoli's, and it turned out to be the one I loved. It's kind of like Goldilocks and the three bears (it was just right); or to paraphrase from the old definition of obscenity, "I knew it when I heard it." I first heard Sinopoli's M5 sometime in the late '80s or early '90s, so it became my first, or imprint, version. Over time, I grew to like other versions, incl. Bernstein's on DG, and Tennstedt's.

By the time I heard Sinopoli's M8 in the '00s, I already had two favorite versions, Bernstein's on CBS and Tennstedt's, so it was unusual for another version to break through. But it did, and it became a favorite. I love all three of them now, with Bernstein's probably being my favorite favorite, especially when I play the first movement from the M2 Bernstein Edition version (the original CD version of the first movement is very rough sounding).

I hope this works as some kind of explanation. It's not as simple a matter as liking the sound quality more -- though that is important -- as a lot of people don't like the sound of Bernstein's CBS Mahler, and most of those are my favorite versions and I listen to them to this day.
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: greg on February 16, 2009, 03:42:49 PM
First actual recording I've heard of the Symphonic Prelude:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=JiRdgFLEn8M

any other good ones out there?
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: Jay F on February 16, 2009, 08:45:53 PM
First actual recording I've heard of the Symphonic Prelude:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=JiRdgFLEn8M
Thanks. I'd never even heard of the Symphonic Prelude. It sounds more like Bruckner than Mahler, though.
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: greg on February 17, 2009, 01:29:10 PM
Thanks. I'd never even heard of the Symphonic Prelude. It sounds more like Bruckner than Mahler, though.
I agree, it does sound a little bit more Brucknerian... although if you compare it to Mahler's early Piano Quintet, the overall sound is extremely similar.

I'm amazed at how certain works like this and The Song of Sorrow can go unlistened to- or even, unheard of, by people who collect 50 recordings of the same symphony. The only reason I'm even aware of the Symphonic Prelude is completely by mistake! I used to go to this one website, and found it here:

http://www.classicalarchives.com/composer/2937.html#music

wondering if it was even written by him. Then, I read some article about it on here a long time ago and find out it really was his. And now, finally, I hear a non-MIDI  recording.  8)
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: imperfection on February 17, 2009, 08:34:50 PM
I agree, it does sound a little bit more Brucknerian... although if you compare it to Mahler's early Piano Quintet, the overall sound is extremely similar.

I'm amazed at how certain works like this and The Song of Sorrow can go unlistened to- or even, unheard of, by people who collect 50 recordings of the same symphony. The only reason I'm even aware of the Symphonic Prelude is completely by mistake! I used to go to this one website, and found it here:

http://www.classicalarchives.com/composer/2937.html#music

wondering if it was even written by him. Then, I read some article about it on here a long time ago and find out it really was his. And now, finally, I hear a non-MIDI  recording.  8)

Greg, have you heard the M5 piano rolls that were recorded by the composer himself? Those are priceless, IMO (not to say I like his own interpretations, but still).
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: greg on February 19, 2009, 03:14:52 PM
Greg, have you heard the M5 piano rolls that were recorded by the composer himself? Those are priceless, IMO (not to say I like his own interpretations, but still).

Yep, at first I found them on youtube, but then got the CD.

http://www.youtube.com/watch/v/KVd7NToZiaw

I really don't like the interpretation, though. It doesn't breathe, and there's too many notes added which don't really do anything. The piano doesn't suit his music too well.
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: imperfection on February 19, 2009, 09:50:18 PM

Yep, at first I found them on youtube, but then got the CD.

http://www.youtube.com/watch/v/KVd7NToZiaw

I really don't like the interpretation, though. It doesn't breathe, and there's too many notes added which don't really do anything. The piano doesn't suit his music too well.

I agree. While the piano is a versatile instrument, I think Mahler's scores are much too sophisticated (oh no, I just said the S word) for the piano. The variety of tone colors and complex (oh my, now the C word) orchestration can't really be brought out that well with 88 tiny hammers. Full orchestra is the way to go  :)
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: greg on February 20, 2009, 02:36:26 PM
There's worse S and C words out there in the world.  ;D
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: Jay F on February 20, 2009, 05:17:46 PM
(http://ecx.images-amazon.com/images/I/41TXP8ST0QL._SS500_.jpg)

I just can't stop listening to this M7.
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: Senta on February 20, 2009, 08:21:25 PM
This 7th comes up frequently around here it seems!  ;)

You know this was the first 7th I actually ever heard, when it came out a year or two ago it was played on the radio on a New Release show and I was spellbound by it! I have a several other recordings now but I still really like this one a lot. The playing is awesome and there is so much detail in the recording.

I also put up video of them playing it at The Proms - there are a few oopsies here and there but as a whole it is quite a performance.

Here is the opening of their stellar last mvmt - the other links can be found to the right of the vids in YouTube:

http://www.youtube.com/v/UilOAx6dQZo&fmt=18
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: Jay F on February 21, 2009, 02:07:10 AM
This 7th comes up frequently around here it seems!  ;)

You know this was the first 7th I actually ever heard, when it came out a year or two ago it was played on the radio on a New Release show and I was spellbound by it! I have a several other recordings now but I still really like this one a lot. The playing is awesome and there is so much detail in the recording.

New copies are available quite cheaply ($9.43) on Amazon Marketplace right now. Well worth it, IMO, even if you don't have an SACD player. The redbook layer comes through just fine.
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: Sergeant Rock on February 21, 2009, 04:42:41 PM
wondering if it was even written by him....

I'm wondering too. La Grange doesn't mention it, and it isn't included in his list of Mahler works. Gramophone says (reviewing the Järvi recording):

The Symphonisches Praeludium has a couple of distinctly Mahlerian moments, and its Bachian preoccupations might be thought to imply a link with the mature composer. Refreshingly, Peter Franklin's notes make no great claims for its authenticity. (Albrecht Gursching's scoring seems rather thick.)

What do you know about it, Greg? Who said it's authentic? In any case, thanks for the youtube link. An interesting listen.

Sarge
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: Cato on February 21, 2009, 05:11:18 PM
It is being played in Helsinki on April 23rd:

http://www.sinfoniaorkesterit.fi/en/index.php?trg=calendar&q=Helsingin%20kaupunginorkesteri

I will soon post a translation of some information about the work, but need some time.


Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: Cato on February 21, 2009, 06:03:15 PM
From the Sikorski Music Publishing Company

"In the catalogs of the Sikorski Music Publishing Company is the “Symphonic Prelude” by Gustav Mahler: the story of its creation and rediscovery is noteworthy.  Mahler wrote this work in 1876 in his first year of study in Vienna.  As the editor Albrecht Gürsching relates: 'The work is a grandiose test of talent, oriented toward Bruckner, of the 16-year old Mahler.  It is on sketch-paper notated by a strange hand (Heinrich Tschuppig,  student comrade of Mahler).  Because the piece has survived the past century after it was once torn up (by Mahler??), the reconstruction involved some genuine detective work.  The glued pieces, made even less clear through an inadequate photocopy, let some idea of the composer’s intentions get through in rough sections.  Moreover, the copy of this very bulky score (in part at least) was constantly squeezed into two parts (for 2 pianos?)  Therefore, before the actual score there (must have) existed an even more divided sketch, in which implied tones and the contrapuntal voice-leading were determined.  The actual score arose in a comparison with Bruckner’s Third Symphony and Mahler’s early compositions.' "

http://www.sikorski.de/de/frameloader.html?frame=http%3A//www.sikorski.de/articles/article601.html

The notes from CHANDOS with the Järvi recording are less sure: they cannot be copied, but in summary they say that the work, discovered in Viennese archives in the 1970's, could be a work by Bruckner and copied by his student and Mahler-comrade Rudolf Krzyanowski.  "Structural peculiarities" led musicologists to think it could be a lost student work of Mahler's, but the notes admit the mystery could never be solved. Mahler "must have identified" with it, even if he "did not compose it himself." 

Hans Rott    :o    is also mentioned:

http://www.chandos.net/pdf/CHAN%209207.pdf
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: Lilas Pastia on February 22, 2009, 06:48:45 AM
The Symphonic Prelude can be dowloaded on John Berky's site (it was thought at first to be by Bruckner), but it seems to have disappeared. It's a short but interesting work. I have a file with Lawrence Foster conducting the Berlin RSO (1981). Did anyone upload that ? If not, and if I can figure out how to do it, I'll post it here.
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: greg on February 22, 2009, 07:03:22 AM


What do you know about it, Greg? Who said it's authentic? In any case, thanks for the youtube link. An interesting listen.

Sarge

Well, "Gustav" posted a pdf about it a long time ago. I saved it to my computer, but just tried looking for it, and I think I deleted it.


From the Sikorski Music Publishing Company

"In the catalogs of the Sikorski Music Publishing Company is the “Symphonic Prelude” by Gustav Mahler: the story of its creation and rediscovery is noteworthy.  Mahler wrote this work in 1876 in his first year of study in Vienna.  As the editor Albrecht Gürsching relates: 'The work is a grandiose test of talent, oriented toward Bruckner, of the 16-year old Mahler.  It is on sketch-paper notated by a strange hand (Heinrich Tschuppig,  student comrade of Mahler).  Because the piece has survived the past century after it was once torn up (by Mahler??), the reconstruction involved some genuine detective work.  The glued pieces, made even less clear through an inadequate photocopy, let some idea of the composer’s intentions get through in rough sections.  Moreover, the copy of this very bulky score (in part at least) was constantly squeezed into two parts (for 2 pianos?)  Therefore, before the actual score there (must have) existed an even more divided sketch, in which implied tones and the contrapuntal voice-leading were determined.  The actual score arose in a comparison with Bruckner’s Third Symphony and Mahler’s early compositions.' "

http://www.sikorski.de/de/frameloader.html?frame=http%3A//www.sikorski.de/articles/article601.html

The notes from CHANDOS with the Järvi recording are less sure: they cannot be copied, but in summary they say that the work, discovered in Viennese archives in the 1970's, could be a work by Bruckner and copied by his student and Mahler-comrade Rudolf Krzyanowski.  "Structural peculiarities" led musicologists to think it could be a lost student work of Mahler's, but the notes admit the mystery could never be solved. Mahler "must have identified" with it, even if he "did not compose it himself." 

Hans Rott    :o    is also mentioned:

http://www.chandos.net/pdf/CHAN%209207.pdf

Can't they tell a difference between the handwriting?
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: Sergeant Rock on February 22, 2009, 07:05:21 AM
Cato, Lilas, thanks for the additional info.

Sarge
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: Sergeant Rock on February 22, 2009, 07:43:36 AM
Well, "Gustav" posted a pdf about it a long time ago. I saved it to my computer, but just tried looking for it, and I think I deleted it.

This might be the pdf you're talking about. Found it on Berky's discography:

http://www.abruckner.com/Data/documents/symphonisches_praeludium_essay.pdf

Edit: Or maybe it isn't. I just read it. It makes a case for Bruckner composing the piece.


Sarge
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: Cato on February 22, 2009, 08:11:44 AM

Can't they tell a difference between the handwriting?

Yes, and the two candidates are Krzyanowski and Tschuppig, according to the above sources.  It seems a little premature to claim the work is by Mahler, since, as the CHANDOS notes indicate, the mystery of who composed it "may never be solved."

And yet CHANDOS sells the work on a Mahler Sixth CD, and the work is scheduled for performances at concerts with Mahler's name.
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: Sergeant Rock on February 22, 2009, 08:50:09 AM
And yet CHANDOS sells the work on a Mahler Sixth CD, and the work is scheduled for performances at concerts with Mahler's name.

The name Mahler sells better than Bruckner  ;)

Sarge
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: Jay F on February 22, 2009, 08:51:04 AM
I started watching DEATH IN VENICE last night. Of course I'm familiar with the fact that the M5, M3, and M4 all figure in the movie, but I'd not seen it since discovering Mahler in 1988. I was confused a little at first by the flashbacks. I thought maybe the character was actually Mahler, but no, he was Gustav Aschenbach. But there was the beautiful wife, the daughter, the music, the name Gustav. I was looking all over for the composing shed. I haven't finished it, as I grew tired, but I will watch the rest today. I wasn't able to find the closed captioning at first, so I missed some story points, I think. I found it in time to watch as the man was slopping disinfectant around.

I didn't think Tadzio was all that beautiful. I thought his "boyfriend" (the guy who kept putting his arm around Tadzio) was a lot better looking. The mens' hair, at least Tadzio's and Aschenbach's, was very "of the moment"--the moment it was shot, not the moment the story took place. My hair in 1971 looked just like Tadzio's, only dark brown. And Aschenbach looked a lot like a friend I hadn't met yet when I saw the movie for the first time in 1971.

If this movie were made today, I suspect Aschenbach's advances and stares would have ended up with him in bed with Tadzio, and it would have had an entirely different outcome. I doubt the movie *would* get made today, given the pedophilia-infused storyline, as it hardly makes sense according to today's sensibilities and storytelling to have the two characters so close, and so much within each other's orbit, without their landing in bed together (or at least the old man's trying to bed the boy and being rejected).

I'm saddened to think that the music made no impression on me when I saw the movie for the first time (1971). I could have been listening to Mahler that much longer.

Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: Haffner on February 22, 2009, 09:08:04 AM
The name Mahler sells better than Bruckner  ;)

Sarge


Which, for me at least, is kind of strange. Although Bruckner had his share of repetitious moments/collection of moments, I seem to be more willing to, say, take a journey through a complete set of his symphonies before Mahler. I mean, both composers are Heavy Metal, but Bruckner is EXTREME-APOCALYPSE-IS-NIGH-SO-SAVE-YO'-BEHIND-Metal.

But then, maybe that's why he doesn't sell as well as Mahler.
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: Lilas Pastia on February 22, 2009, 03:18:16 PM
I started watching DEATH IN VENICE last night. Of course I'm familiar with the fact that the M5, M3, and M4 all figure in the movie, but I'd not seen it since discovering Mahler in 1988. I was confused a little at first by the flashbacks. I thought maybe the character was actually Mahler, but no, he was Gustav Aschenbach. But there was the beautiful wife, the daughter, the music, the name Gustav. I was looking all over for the composing shed. I haven't finished it, as I grew tired, but I will watch the rest today. I wasn't able to find the closed captioning at first, so I missed some story points, I think. I found it in time to watch as the man was slopping disinfectant around.

I didn't think Tadzio was all that beautiful. I thought his "boyfriend" (the guy who kept putting his arm around Tadzio) was a lot better looking. The mens' hair, at least Tadzio's and Aschenbach's, was very "of the moment"--the moment it was shot, not the moment the story took place. My hair in 1971 looked just like Tadzio's, only dark brown. And Aschenbach looked a lot like a friend I hadn't met yet when I saw the movie for the first time in 1971.

If this movie were made today, I suspect Aschenbach's advances and stares would have ended up with him in bed with Tadzio, and it would have had an entirely different outcome. I doubt the movie *would* get made today, given the pedophilia-infused storyline, as it hardly makes sense according to today's sensibilities and storytelling to have the two characters so close, and so much within each other's orbit, without their landing in bed together (or at least the old man's trying to bed the boy and being rejected).

I'm saddened to think that the music made no impression on me when I saw the movie for the first time (1971). I could have been listening to Mahler that much longer.



Mann's Death in Venice's  homoerotic subtext - well, main subject, in this instance - would certainly be considered X rated today considering it features an obviously underage youth. In Mann's days the whole thing was still closely connected with the greek antiquity concepts of erastes (lover) and his eromenos (loved one). It didn't have 'bedding the boy' as its goal. Indeed, the Greeks clearly distinguished between the platonic, mentor-like relationship and the more sensual attentions that were reserved for the older boys. Pedophilia as we know it today was frowned upon in ancient Greece. Tadzio in Death in Venice is clearly the eromenos of the beach guard (his erastes). Aschenbach's behaviour (his mental torment and useless tailing of the boy) merely depict his realization that an essential aspect of his being had laid closeted within him until that moment. IMO it's more to do with that concept than the actual object of his attentions. In that sense Tadzio was a mere abstraction. It's interesting to note that at the same period Visconti was engaged in precisely that kind of relation with the young Helmut Berger. Years after Viscontis' death, Berger still claimed the older man to be his 'husband'.
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: Jay F on February 22, 2009, 08:24:04 PM
Mann's Death in Venice's  homoerotic subtext - well, main subject, in this instance - would certainly be considered X rated today considering it features an obviously underage youth. In Mann's days the whole thing was still closely connected with the greek antiquity concepts of erastes (lover) and his eromenos (loved one). It didn't have 'bedding the boy' as its goal. Indeed, the Greeks clearly distinguished between the platonic, mentor-like relationship and the more sensual attentions that were reserved for the older boys. Pedophilia as we know it today was frowned upon in ancient Greece. Tadzio in Death in Venice is clearly the eromenos of the beach guard (his erastes). Aschenbach's behaviour (his mental torment and useless tailing of the boy) merely depict his realization that an essential aspect of his being had laid closeted within him until that moment. IMO it's more to do with that concept than the actual object of his attentions. In that sense Tadzio was a mere abstraction. It's interesting to note that at the same period Visconti was engaged in precisely that kind of relation with the young Helmut Berger. Years after Viscontis' death, Berger still claimed the older man to be his 'husband'.
Thanks for the explication. I finished watching it tonight, and I don't know what to make of it. I liked it more in 1971, somehow. I loved the music, of course, but found it confusing that the writer from the book had been turned into some kind of stand-in for Mahler, with the music, and the booing, and the wife and the daughter (and didn't she die?). I didn't understand this aspect at all 38 years ago.

I found the ending hideous. I almost wish I hadn't watched it. I don't want its images to stick in my head when I listen to the music from now on. And again, I still can't figure out why I didn't like the music enough in 1971 to buy a copy. Do you know whose versions they used?
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: Sergeant Rock on February 23, 2009, 07:11:46 AM
I found the ending hideous. I almost wish I hadn't watched it. I don't want its images to stick in my head when I listen to the music from now on. And again, I still can't figure out why I didn't like the music enough in 1971 to buy a copy. Do you know whose versions they used?

I believe the music was recorded specifically for the soundtrack: Franco Mannino (conductor), L'Orchestra dell'Academia Di Santa Cecilia.

I've never seen the film, and never will. I don't want Mahler's music associated, in my mind, with the obsession and pursuit of boys, no matter how classically pure or metaphorical the meaning.

Sarge
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: J.Z. Herrenberg on February 23, 2009, 08:24:47 AM
I believe the music was recorded specifically for the soundtrack: Franco Mannino (conductor), L'Orchestra dell'Academia Di Santa Cecilia.

I've never seen the film, and never will. I don't want Mahler's music associated, in my mind, with the obsession and pursuit of boys, no matter how classically pure or metaphorical the meaning.

Well, I did see the film more than 25 years ago, but I have never ever associated the Adagietto with Visconti and a tragic infatuation with a beautiful boy. Call it compartmentalization...
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: Sergeant Rock on February 23, 2009, 08:31:13 AM
Well, I did see the film more than 25 years ago, but I have never ever associated the Adagietto with Visconti and a tragic infatuation with a beautiful boy. Call it compartmentalization...

I'm not sure I could do that. For example, ever since seeing Woody Allen's Crimes and Misdemeanors I've not been able to hear the Schubert that accompanies the murder scene without that scene flashing into my head. It's ruined the music for me.

Sarge
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: J.Z. Herrenberg on February 23, 2009, 08:52:35 AM
I'm not sure I could do that. For example, ever since seeing Woody Allen's Crimes and Misdemeanors I've not been able to hear the Schubert that accompanies the murder scene without that scene flashing into my head. It's ruined the music for me.

Sarge

Talking of unwanted associations... I have a confession to make and if you read what I write I might have ruined another great musical moment for you... When I hear that final upward scale of Brian's Sixteenth I am always reminded of a similar moment at the end of the signature tune of The Muppets (This is what we call the Muppet SHOW!)  :o
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: Scots John on February 23, 2009, 09:51:37 AM
 ;D

Anyone got this, and if so, what's it like?  I've got his [Haitink doing Mahler] 2nd and one of the best 7ths I've heard, and it is somewhat daft of me to consider YET ANOTHER Mahler collection - but what I have from Haitink is outstanding, and maybe he should be considered as a great Mahler interpreter.
However, I need to hear more, and if this collection is as good as the two symphonies I already have, I'll be raving about it for weeks.

But how does it compare say, to the passion of Bernstein, the drive of Tennstedt or the master musicianship of Neumann and the CPO?
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: Que on February 23, 2009, 10:29:38 AM
;D

Anyone got this, and if so, what's it like?  I've got his [Haitink doing Mahler] 2nd and one of the best 7ths I've heard, and it is somewhat daft of me to consider YET ANOTHER Mahler collection - but what I have from Haitink is outstanding, and maybe he should be considered as a great Mahler interpreter.
However, I need to hear more, and if this collection is as good as the two symphonies I already have, I'll be raving about it for weeks.

Best are 2, 3 and... 7. :)

Q
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: Jay F on February 23, 2009, 11:50:22 AM
I'm not sure I could do that. For example, ever since seeing Woody Allen's Crimes and Misdemeanors I've not been able to hear the Schubert that accompanies the murder scene without that scene flashing into my head. It's ruined the music for me.

Sarge
I have never liked videos. I don't like to have visuals forced upon me that I may never be able to forget. My memory is VERY susceptible that way.
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: J.Z. Herrenberg on February 23, 2009, 12:17:49 PM
Best are 2, 3 and... 7. :)

There's nothing wrong with 1, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8 and 9 either. But perhaps I'm biased - these performances were the first Mahler I collected 30 years ago, starting with the Sixth. I have never compared them, though. They are too much a part of what I take Mahler to be...
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: Sergeant Rock on February 23, 2009, 12:30:11 PM
When I hear that final upward scale of Brian's Sixteenth I am always reminded of a similar moment at the end of the signature tune of The Muppets (This is what we call the Muppet SHOW!)  :o

Damn you, Johan!!!

 ;D :D ;D

Sarge
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: Brewski on February 23, 2009, 12:46:28 PM
;D

Anyone got this, and if so, what's it like?  I've got his [Haitink doing Mahler] 2nd and one of the best 7ths I've heard, and it is somewhat daft of me to consider YET ANOTHER Mahler collection - but what I have from Haitink is outstanding, and maybe he should be considered as a great Mahler interpreter.
However, I need to hear more, and if this collection is as good as the two symphonies I already have, I'll be raving about it for weeks.

But how does it compare say, to the passion of Bernstein, the drive of Tennstedt or the master musicianship of Neumann and the CPO?

I don't have this box, but I do have many of the individual performances and like them very, very much.  (I even like his Eighth, which was the first version of the piece I ever heard.)  IMHO Haitink is absolutely a great Mahler interpreter.  You might also want to look around for this set of live Mahler performances Haitink recorded on Christmas Day matinees.  Here (http://www.musicweb-international.com/classrev/2001/Jan01/Mahler_Sets.htm) are Tony Duggan's comments on MusicWeb.  The set has every symphony except Nos. 6 and 8, and if you like live recordings, these are quite excellent.

--Bruce
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: Sergeant Rock on February 23, 2009, 01:15:04 PM
But how does it compare say, to the passion of Bernstein, the drive of Tennstedt or the master musicianship of Neumann and the CPO?

Closest to Neumann...solild, middle-of-the-road readings with no histrionics or exaggerated tempi in either direction. Mahler and the Concertgebouw (the best Mahler band imo) are the stars. Like Johan, Haitink was my introduction to many of the symphonies (2, 3, 4, 5, 7 and 9) and I still own those wonderful Philips LP boxes. I don't have many on CD (I've come to prefer Chailly overall with this orchestra) but I think 3 and 9 should be in every collection. In 40+ years attending concerts, Haitink leading the Clevelanders in the Ninth was the best, and the most moving experience I've ever had in the concert hall...which makes me seriously consider that Christmas box that Bruce mentions.

Sarge
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: Drasko on February 23, 2009, 01:23:32 PM
....I think 3 and 9 should be in every collection.

Second on the 9th, still one of the finest around.
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: Que on February 23, 2009, 01:47:18 PM
Second on the 9th, still one of the finest around.

I admit: I should have mentioned Haitink's 9th as well - Mea Culpa! :)

Q
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: greg on February 23, 2009, 07:59:45 PM
This might be the pdf you're talking about. Found it on Berky's discography:

http://www.abruckner.com/Data/documents/symphonisches_praeludium_essay.pdf

Edit: Or maybe it isn't. I just read it. It makes a case for Bruckner composing the piece.


Sarge
I don't think it is, because the article I read was longer and had musical examples.
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: greg on February 23, 2009, 08:11:10 PM
I started watching DEATH IN VENICE last night. Of course I'm familiar with the fact that the M5, M3, and M4 all figure in the movie, but I'd not seen it since discovering Mahler in 1988. I was confused a little at first by the flashbacks. I thought maybe the character was actually Mahler, but no, he was Gustav Aschenbach. But there was the beautiful wife, the daughter, the music, the name Gustav. I was looking all over for the composing shed. I haven't finished it, as I grew tired, but I will watch the rest today. I wasn't able to find the closed captioning at first, so I missed some story points, I think. I found it in time to watch as the man was slopping disinfectant around.

I didn't think Tadzio was all that beautiful. I thought his "boyfriend" (the guy who kept putting his arm around Tadzio) was a lot better looking. The mens' hair, at least Tadzio's and Aschenbach's, was very "of the moment"--the moment it was shot, not the moment the story took place. My hair in 1971 looked just like Tadzio's, only dark brown. And Aschenbach looked a lot like a friend I hadn't met yet when I saw the movie for the first time in 1971.

If this movie were made today, I suspect Aschenbach's advances and stares would have ended up with him in bed with Tadzio, and it would have had an entirely different outcome. I doubt the movie *would* get made today, given the pedophilia-infused storyline, as it hardly makes sense according to today's sensibilities and storytelling to have the two characters so close, and so much within each other's orbit, without their landing in bed together (or at least the old man's trying to bed the boy and being rejected).

I'm saddened to think that the music made no impression on me when I saw the movie for the first time (1971). I could have been listening to Mahler that much longer.


I heard about that movie- sounds completely messed up. They could put Mahler in better places- I wish they could put him in a soundtrack for a new Final Fantasy game (Bruckner, Brahms and Shostakovich, too) (the 4 great symphonists). That would be the most epic soundtrack for anything ever realized.

It could start off with a scene of the protagonist awakening in a field to the beginning of Mahler's 1st, and then end with the closing notes of the 9th to him fading off into space (similar to a scene which actually did happen in one of them). They could have Shostakovich string quartets for some of the villages, Bruckner's 6th for the airship music, Brahms' 2nd for forest music, and mainly use Mahler for very long cut scenes.

Man, now I won't be able to get to sleep having thought of this... a game like that would be like a dream come true- combining all of that into one thing. Excuse me while I make a phone call...
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: Lilas Pastia on February 24, 2009, 06:23:34 PM
Haitink's Concertgebouw studio performances of 1, 4 and 7 are from two vintages, apart from one another by about 10 years. If I'm not mistaken the Philips set contains 1 version 2, 4 and 7 versions 1. IMO they should have retained 4 and 7 from the later, late seventies recordings. There is only one studio performance each of 2, 3, and 5-9. IMO they are among the very best and showcase the damned epithet 'musical' as no others do. Apart from a tepid orchestral conclusion to 2 (Resurrection), I would feel safe to recommend 2, 3, 5, 7 and 9 unreservedly. The first 7th is light and transparent, the second (not included in the set) more ruminative in pacing, more somber yet glowing in textures, but lacking the zest and fantasy of the earlier version - take your pick. No 6 is unsettled, unnervingly light of texture and unimposing, whereas 1 and 8 are gloriously apollinian - meaning, they are gorgeously light and classical in feeling, consciously eschewing any effusiveness or theatricality. Think of the mendelssohnian heritage (not just the symphonies, but the Midsummer Night or Walpurgisnacht music).

In short, this set presents a sharply defined point of view, and it highlights both the excellence of the playing and an unmistakable musical tradition. I'm quite sure Mahler would have been proud.
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: Jay F on February 25, 2009, 06:24:36 AM
Do these contain the same version of Haitink's RCO M7?

(http://g-ecx.images-amazon.com/images/G/01/ciu/72/af/dd38024128a05d7f202cf010.L._AA240_.jpg) (http://ecx.images-amazon.com/images/I/51%2Bq8UrRT-L._SS500_.jpg)
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: imperfection on February 26, 2009, 11:07:17 PM
Do these contain the same version of Haitink's RCO M7?

(http://g-ecx.images-amazon.com/images/G/01/ciu/72/af/dd38024128a05d7f202cf010.L._AA240_.jpg) (http://ecx.images-amazon.com/images/I/51%2Bq8UrRT-L._SS500_.jpg)

Yes.

Have you also checked out the BPO 7th on DVD? It is coupled with the 4th and I've heard very good things about it. I've only seen the 3rd in the same series and the video/sound quality is absolutely great (not to mention to top-notch performance).
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: Que on February 27, 2009, 01:50:40 AM
Yes.

If I read Lilas' post correctly, according to him they actually are different. Could someone check? :)

I have the single isue on the left and it's recorded in december 1982.

Q
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: J.Z. Herrenberg on February 27, 2009, 02:17:52 AM
AFAIK the Haitink box contains the performances from the 60s and 70s. That rules out the 1982 7th (which I prefer to the earlier one, too).
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: Que on February 27, 2009, 02:36:32 AM
AFAIK the Haitink box contains the performances from the 60s and 70s. That rules out the 1982 7th (which I prefer to the earlier one, too).

Thanks! :)

And for the 4th? I myself prefer the 1st recording with Elly Ameling ('67) instead of the 2nd with Roberta Alexander. I also got the much lauded new recording with Christine Schäfer... but despite all the accolades for that recording I still prefer the one with Ameling. ::)

Q
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: Drasko on February 27, 2009, 02:50:49 AM
According to Decca site Haitink box contains first versions of all three symphonies in question [bolded].

1st
BERNARD HAITINK, Amsterdam Concertgebouw Orchestra
(rec. September 18 & 20, 1962 in the Concertgebouw, Amsterdam)

BERNARD HAITINK, Amsterdam Concertgebouw Orchestra
(rec. May 18 to 20, 1972 in the Concertgebouw, Amsterdam)

4th
BERNARD HAITINK, Elly Ameling, Amsterdam Concertgebouw Orchestra
(rec. February 20 & 22, 1967 in the Concertgebouw, Amsterdam)

BERNARD HAITINK, Roberta Alexander, Amsterdam Concertgebouw Orchestra
(rec. October 3 & 4, 1983 in the Concertgebouw, Amsterdam)

7th

BERNARD HAITINK, Amsterdam Concertgebouw Orchestra
(rec. December 19 & 22, 1969 in the Concertgebouw, Amsterdam)


BERNARD HAITINK, Amsterdam Concertgebouw Orchestra
(rec. December 6 to 13, 1982 in the Concertgebouw, Amsterdam)
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: Jay F on February 27, 2009, 08:08:12 AM
Yes.

Have you also checked out the BPO 7th on DVD? It is coupled with the 4th and I've heard very good things about it. I've only seen the 3rd in the same series and the video/sound quality is absolutely great (not to mention to top-notch performance).
Actually, no. I don't think I've ever heard any of Haitink's Mahler. Or very much else by Haitink, for that matter. When I first started listening to classical, I bought a couple of Penguin Guides, and they weren't particularly kind to Haitink.

And thanks, everyone, for the clarification.
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: Sergeant Rock on February 27, 2009, 09:46:49 AM
When I first started listening to classical, I bought a couple of Penguin Guides, and they weren't particularly kind to Haitink.

While not wildly enthusiastic about the entire cycle, the authors have, over the years, consistently singled out 3, 7, and 9  for special praise (I just checked the '75 and '96 editions). Those are the performances that have gotten the most praise in this forum too. They are definitely worth hearing, and owning.

Sarge
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: Jay F on February 27, 2009, 10:53:50 AM
While not wildly enthusiastic about the entire cycle, the authors have, over the years, consistently singled out 3, 7, and 9  for special praise (I just checked the '75 and '96 editions). Those are the performances that have gotten the most praise in this forum too. They are definitely worth hearing, and owning.

Sarge
Thanks. I have 9. I'll look for 3 and 7.
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: Archaic Torso of Apollo on February 27, 2009, 11:52:38 AM
While not wildly enthusiastic about the entire cycle, the authors have, over the years, consistently singled out 3, 7, and 9  for special praise

Coincidentally, I just recently picked up the Haitink/Con'bouw 3rd (reissued as a Philips "Original" with Das klagende Lied) and I can testify that it's a wonderful performance. No detail in particular jumps out at me; it's just really well done by all concerned, all the way through.

Also crying out for mention - Haitink's great recording of Das Lied von der Erde with Baker and King.
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: J.Z. Herrenberg on February 27, 2009, 11:54:20 AM
Thanks! :)

And for the 4th? I myself prefer the 1st recording with Elly Ameling ('67) instead of the 2nd with Roberta Alexander. I also got the much lauded new recording with Christine Schäfer... but despite all the accolades for that recording I still prefer the one with Ameling. ::)

Q

Oh yes - Elly Ameling is unforgettable!

Coincidentally, I just recently picked up the Haitink/Con'bouw 3rd (reissued as a Philips "Original" with Das klagende Lied) and I can testify that it's a wonderful performance. No detail in particular jumps out at me; it's just really well done by all concerned, all the way through.

Also crying out for mention - Haitink's great recording of Das Lied von der Erde with Baker and King.

Certainly for Janet Baker and the Concertgebouw itself.
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: Lilas Pastia on February 27, 2009, 08:15:26 PM
According to Decca site Haitink box contains first versions of all three symphonies in question [bolded].

1st
BERNARD HAITINK, Amsterdam Concertgebouw Orchestra
(rec. September 18 & 20, 1962 in the Concertgebouw, Amsterdam)

BERNARD HAITINK, Amsterdam Concertgebouw Orchestra
(rec. May 18 to 20, 1972 in the Concertgebouw, Amsterdam)

4th
BERNARD HAITINK, Elly Ameling, Amsterdam Concertgebouw Orchestra
(rec. February 20 & 22, 1967 in the Concertgebouw, Amsterdam)

BERNARD HAITINK, Roberta Alexander, Amsterdam Concertgebouw Orchestra
(rec. October 3 & 4, 1983 in the Concertgebouw, Amsterdam)

7th

BERNARD HAITINK, Amsterdam Concertgebouw Orchestra
(rec. December 19 & 22, 1969 in the Concertgebouw, Amsterdam)


BERNARD HAITINK, Amsterdam Concertgebouw Orchestra
(rec. December 6 to 13, 1982 in the Concertgebouw, Amsterdam)

The decision to choose the inferior 1962 First symphony for inclusion in the complete set is a strange one. The series was completed around 1972 (symphony 8 IIRC), and the new version of 1 was recorded at the same time. Logically Philips should have kept it instead of going back to the much tamer earlier effort.
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: imperfection on February 27, 2009, 08:59:01 PM
I'm sorry I made a mistake. The Haitink performances are different indeed.
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: greg on March 04, 2009, 03:13:38 PM
found this:

http://classiclibrary.blogspot.com/2009/03/gustav-mahler-symhopny-no9-in-d-sir.html

a scanned article from Gramophone magazine about Rattle and him conducting the 9th.
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: Jay F on March 04, 2009, 03:43:35 PM
found this:

http://classiclibrary.blogspot.com/2009/03/gustav-mahler-symhopny-no9-in-d-sir.html

a scanned article from Gramophone magazine about Rattle and him conducting the 9th.
Oh, you've made me go shopping. What am I going to do?
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: ChamberNut on March 13, 2009, 12:57:15 PM
OK........is it wrong for me to absolutely love Mahler's "complete" 10th?  :-[

I just heard it for the first time in this completed version, and I found it incredible!  Stunning.....
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: DavidRoss on March 13, 2009, 03:18:29 PM
OK........is it wrong for me to absolutely love Mahler's "complete" 10th?  :-[

I just heard it for the first time in this completed version, and I found it incredible!  Stunning.....
Whose completion?  I have Cooke's performed by Rattie/BP and Chailly/RCO, and Barshai conducting his own with the German Youth Philharmonic, and prefer the last.

I think you are right to love it.  When I first heard it, I was amazed by the spiritual repose old Gus seems to have found so late in life after so much anguished striving.  Good on you, mate!
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: greg on March 13, 2009, 06:43:36 PM
I think you are right to love it.  When I first heard it, I was amazed by the spiritual repose old Gus seems to have found so late in life after so much anguished striving.  Good on you, mate!
Am I the only who thinks nothing sounds quite like the first movement of the Tenth & the Adagio of the 9th (which is like a continuation)? Just wondering... Seems to me like the most original style of sound he's thought up of, second to maybe the opening movement of the 3rd, which is ridiculous (he did say the world has never heard anything like it, after all). With most of his other stuff, you can hear other composers' attitudes in them, even if not obvious at first.
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: Cato on March 13, 2009, 06:56:21 PM
Am I the only who thinks nothing sounds quite like the first movement of the Tenth & the Adagio of the 9th (which is like a continuation)? Just wondering... Seems to me like the most original style of sound he's thought up of, second to maybe the opening movement of the 3rd, which is ridiculous (he did say the world has never heard anything like it, after all). With most of his other stuff, you can hear other composers' attitudes in them, even if not obvious at first.

I commented elsewhere that the Mahler Tenth Adagio is the only possible FInale for Bruckner's Ninth.
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: greg on March 13, 2009, 07:06:13 PM
I commented elsewhere that the Mahler Tenth Adagio is the only possible FInale for Bruckner's Ninth.
I'll have to try listening to it like that one day.  :D
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: ChamberNut on March 13, 2009, 07:16:43 PM
Whose completion?  I have Cooke's performed by Rattie/BP and Chailly/RCO, and Barshai conducting his own with the German Youth Philharmonic, and prefer the last.

I think you are right to love it.  When I first heard it, I was amazed by the spiritual repose old Gus seems to have found so late in life after so much anguished striving.  Good on you, mate!

The Deryck Cooke performing version 1976/1989, with the 2008 DG recording of VP and Daniel Harding.
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: Cato on March 14, 2009, 03:34:38 AM
I'll have to try listening to it like that one day.  :D

Make sure your soul is ready that day!   0:)
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: Jay F on March 14, 2009, 08:15:27 AM
Am I the only who thinks nothing sounds quite like the first movement of the Tenth & the Adagio of the 9th (which is like a continuation)? Just wondering... Seems to me like the most original style of sound he's thought up of, second to maybe the opening movement of the 3rd, which is ridiculous (he did say the world has never heard anything like it, after all). With most of his other stuff, you can hear other composers' attitudes in them, even if not obvious at first.
Because I imprinted on the first movement of M10 coming right after the M9 adagio (see avatar), they have always seemed united, one very logically following the other.
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: greg on March 14, 2009, 07:26:41 PM
Because I imprinted on the first movement of M10 coming right after the M9 adagio (see avatar), they have always seemed united, one very logically following the other.
Never noticed it until just now!  :D
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: Lilas Pastia on March 19, 2009, 04:57:41 AM
The connnection is definitely there, something that can't escape anyone who listens to the Adagio of 10 for the first time (assuming they know the 9th of course). But the M10 Adagio as finale for Bruckner 9 is something I've never considered. Since I have a backlog of B9s to listen to, I'll try it that way :D
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: greg on March 24, 2009, 11:43:03 AM
I got someone on Mahler today. He keeps asking for some classical- last time, I could only offer some Stravinsky chamber works, and he didn't like- he ended up asking if I had some Bach instead. Today, he asked again, and I had Boulez conducting the Mahler 2nd symphony, so I let him listen. He said he really, really, liked it and he loved how the music gets so loud and then quiet- "it's awesome". Really, though, I'd have to say it's unexpected since everyone thinks he's the dumb one of the class- including me, but I'll have to rethink that now.  ;D
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: DavidRoss on March 24, 2009, 11:50:49 AM
I got someone on Mahler today. He keeps asking for some classical- last time, I could only offer some Stravinsky chamber works, and he didn't like- he ended up asking if I had some Bach instead. Today, he asked again, and I had Boulez conducting the Mahler 2nd symphony, so I let him listen. He said he really, really, liked it and he loved how the music gets so loud and then quiet- "it's awesome". Really, though, I'd have to say it's unexpected since everyone thinks he's the dumb one of the class- including me, but I'll have to rethink that now.  ;D
Likes loud and then quiet, eh?  Probably the first time he's ever heard that if all he's familiar with is pop music with the bejeezus compressed out of all dynamic variation.  (Anyone else tickled by the irony that one of the genuine virtues of digital compared with analog is the greater dynamic range, and yet most of today's digital recordings scarcely vary more than 5dB?)
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: greg on March 24, 2009, 01:02:59 PM
Haha, good point- never thought of it like that.
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: Diletante on March 27, 2009, 10:04:25 AM
I listened to his 3rd symphony for the first time yesterday (from Sinopoli's cycle). I was already familiar with symphonies 1, 2, 4 and 5. From the moment it started I felt uneasy, for some reason it didn't seem like Mahler to me! The first movement sounded like a bunch of disconnected fragments of music for march band. When the snare drum solo kicked in, I got really nervous. "Did Mahler really write this? What the heck is this, it doesn't sound like the other symphonies!".  :o Honestly I'd never felt this nervous when listening to a piece for the first time.

The second movement relaxed me a bit because it sounded more "Mahlerian" to my ears. And the third movement just REEKED of Mahler and calmed me down completely. Not to mention the fifth movement, which seemed to come right out of the fourth symphony (I know it's the other way around, but I was already familiar with the fourth, so...).

Funny thing, I listened to the first movement again this morning and suddenly it made sense and sounded more like him. Weird.
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: Renfield on March 27, 2009, 10:22:38 AM
The third is funky like that. ;D
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: imperfection on March 27, 2009, 10:32:41 AM
I listened to his 3rd symphony for the first time yesterday (from Sinopoli's cycle). I was already familiar with symphonies 1, 2, 4 and 5. From the moment it started I felt uneasy, for some reason it didn't seem like Mahler to me! The first movement sounded like a bunch of disconnected fragments of music for march band. When the snare drum solo kicked in, I got really nervous. "Did Mahler really write this? What the heck is this, it doesn't sound like the other symphonies!".  :o Honestly I'd never felt this nervous when listening to a piece for the first time.

The second movement relaxed me a bit because it sounded more "Mahlerian" to my ears. And the third movement just REEKED of Mahler and calmed me down completely. Not to mention the fifth movement, which seemed to come right out of the fourth symphony (I know it's the other way around, but I was already familiar with the fourth, so...).

Funny thing, I listened to the first movement again this morning and suddenly it made sense and sounded more like him. Weird.

What do you think of the finale? Isn't that some of the most inspiring, heartwarming and soul-stirring music Mahler ever wrote? However, I must say that the ending of Sinopoli's version is not very well done; the tone of the orchestra in the closing bars lack warmth. That is mainly due to overly bright trumpets which may or may not have been the engineer's fault...and the last fermata chord is supposed to be really sustained and rounded off when released, as Mahler specifically says in the score not to abruptly cut the end off. In Sinopoli's version however, the strings don't cut off last and therefore there's no "ring" to the last chord. The whole orchestra cuts off together, therefore it does sound a little sudden and inappropriate for ending such an epic, grandiose movement (and symphony).
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: Diletante on March 27, 2009, 04:25:16 PM
What do you think of the finale? Isn't that some of the most inspiring, heartwarming and soul-stirring music Mahler ever wrote?

Oh yes!  :D It reminds me of the finale of Tchaikovsky's Sixth.

However, I must say that the ending of Sinopoli's version is not very well done.

I see. Whose version would you recommend?
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: Renfield on March 27, 2009, 06:37:33 PM
I see. Whose version would you recommend?

I'm not imperfection, but early Bernstein, early Haitink, and Boulez are all superb, with Abbado/VPO, Gielen and Chailly following closely.

(In my opinion, that is. Although if we count all formats, the Abbado DVD with the Lucerne Festival Orchestra is a must.)
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: imperfection on March 28, 2009, 07:10:29 PM
I'm not imperfection, but early Bernstein, early Haitink, and Boulez are all superb, with Abbado/VPO, Gielen and Chailly following closely.

(In my opinion, that is. Although if we count all formats, the Abbado DVD with the Lucerne Festival Orchestra is a must.)

I generally agree with Renfield. Would also like to add the Bernstein DG 3rd, which has a gorgeous and spellbinding finale. If you want a DVD, get the Abbado DVD or the Haitink/BPO. I myself prefer the latter because I simply think it is more epic and grandiose, as opposed to Abbado's lyrical, intimate chamber approach.
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: Diletante on March 28, 2009, 09:29:19 PM
All right! Thanks for the suggestions, I'll try to get the Bernstein.
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: imperfection on March 29, 2009, 06:40:40 PM
All right! Thanks for the suggestions, I'll try to get the Bernstein.

For the 6th, which I gathered you aren't familiar with yet, try Barbirolli for a majestic, grandiose reading that perfectly fits the epic magnitude of the piece. Bernstein's (DG) is an emotional roller coaster also, perhaps as heavy as the former. However, I think the Italian got the heartbreaking Andante just right, especially at one of the climaxes where the harp glissando adds tonal colour to the mix -- a huge block of lush orchestral sound, that is; the recording literally creamed my pants. Definitely one of the great 6ths. If you get it on the Great Recordings of The Century EMI series, it is coupled with Strauss' A Hero's Life too, but I haven't heard that one yet, although it received fantastic reviews from critics and fans alike.
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: Renfield on March 29, 2009, 06:50:37 PM
However, I think the Italian got the heartbreaking Andante just right, especially at one of the climaxes where the harp glissando adds tonal colour to the mix -- a huge block of lush orchestral sound, that is; the recording literally creamed my pants.

He was a Londoner, but yes, the recording is very good. Alongside the Barbirolli and the DG Bernstein, I'd definitely recommend the Karajan (recently discussed in the Karajan Legacy thread); as well as any Mitropoulos version you can get your hands on, if you don't mind historical sound.

And "for something completely different", have a look at the Boulez.
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: Jay F on March 29, 2009, 07:05:00 PM
He was a Londoner, but yes, the recording is very good. Alongside the Barbirolli and the DG Bernstein, I'd definitely recommend the Karajan (recently discussed in the Karajan Legacy thread); as well as any Mitropoulos version you can get your hands on, if you don't mind historical sound.

And "for something completely different", have a look at the Boulez.
My favorite M6 is Bernstein's on CBS. I couldn't listen to anything else for years. I've heard the others mentioned, and the only one I really like is Karajan's.
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: Diletante on March 29, 2009, 07:14:32 PM
Gee, thanks, guys. I've never heard anything directed by Barbirolli, so this might be a good chance to try him.

I'm still pretty much ignorant as far as conductors go, so I really appreciate the advice. I just know that I've liked every Bernstein interpretation I've heard. I have DG videos of him with the Wiener Philarmoniker conducting symphonies 4, 5, 6, 7 and 8.
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: Renfield on March 29, 2009, 07:17:33 PM
My favorite M6 is Bernstein's on CBS. I couldn't listen to anything else for years. I've heard the others mentioned, and the only one I really like is Karajan's.

From what I remember of it, the CBS Bernstein is indeed very good - I'd just (personally) consider it superseded by the DG. :)

Although I can see how you might not particularly appreciate the expansiveness of the VPO account.


Edit: And no worries, tanuki. Do try Barbirolli, he was an exceptional conductor; more so, make sure to try his Mahler 5th, as well!
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: imperfection on March 29, 2009, 09:24:25 PM
From what I remember of it, the CBS Bernstein is indeed very good - I'd just (personally) consider it superseded by the DG. :)

Although I can see how you might not particularly appreciate the expansiveness of the VPO account.


Edit: And no worries, tanuki. Do try Barbirolli, he was an exceptional conductor; more so, make sure to try his Mahler 5th, as well!

Then the 9th.
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: Renfield on March 29, 2009, 09:44:04 PM
Then the 9th.

Indeed.
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: imperfection on March 30, 2009, 03:45:16 PM
I was just listening to Sinopoli's 6th, what an exquisite performance. All instruments are heard, the sound of the orchestra is extremely transparent and clear yet powerful enough to engulf the audience in a tight grip until the epic finale is over. Interpretation wise, bits of unique insight here and there, perhaps the first movement is a bit flaccid if one is accustomed to Barbirolli/Solti/Bernstein, but the playing of the PO is nothing to sneeze at; their blend is gorgeous. Sinopoli uses extreme rubato to create a emotional, but deeply thought over, analyzed reading. The Andante Moderato is almost 20 minutes long! The recorded sound couldn't have been bettered, you can leave your volume knobs at 30% or lower and still hear all the orchestral sound effects and colorful instrumental timbres Mahler wrote in the complex score.

If you have any doubts about the idiosyncratic interpretations of the conductor, at least get this set for the amazing orchestral sound produced by the PO here. It is almost as unique and distinctive as Karajan's BPO, at that's saying something. Renfield, you should get it ASAP so we can discuss it  :). Right now, not a lot of members have this cycle and I'm enjoying this wonderful set all alone... :'(
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: Renfield on March 30, 2009, 08:14:04 PM
Well, ASAP might take a while, as I have quite a number of things I would rather spend ca. £80 on, than yet another Mahler cycle, and before I've gone through Maazel's, which is still practically in shrink-wrap! But I certainly am interested, so it's probably coming sooner or later. :)
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: Lilas Pastia on April 06, 2009, 02:32:05 PM
Well, ASAP might take a while, as I have quite a number of things I would rather spend ca. £80 on, than yet another Mahler cycle, and before I've gone through Maazel's, which is still practically in shrink-wrap! But I certainly am interested, so it's probably coming sooner or later. :)

Nothing to cream your pants about IMO, but a very interesting cycle for peripheral reasons. A more typically "mahlerian" cycle is probably Bertini's, and a more straightforwardly musical one would have Haitink leading the Amsterdam Concertgebouw Orchestra. Maazel's Mahler has always reminded me of some stuff like Bernstein's DG remakes of Copland, Harris, Schumann or Brahms: gorgeous stuff from someone who had veered from bracing, exciting music making to something more personal, more reflective - inward vs outward-looking.
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: greg on April 16, 2009, 02:46:44 PM
I have to ask- anyone out there who thinks Mahler 8 is like a drone? Sure, I enjoy it for a few minutes at a time- it's one of the most ecstatic pieces ever written. The problem for me is lack of variation in mood- there's hardly a second which doesn't feel like it's heading towards some joyous apocalyptic orgasm. This is great, but at least for me, it's just too much.

Right now, I've been digging into both Bernstein's and Chailly's sets for the first time. I've heard all of Bernstein and I've heard Chailly's 5th a while ago and thought it was nearly perfect, and have listened to his 10th a few days ago and thought it was as close to perfect as you can get. Seriously, when I listened, I thought I was going to die, it was that good. In contrast to Bernstein's recording of the Adagio, he takes it slower and when that F# major chord opens up, you hear strings, not winds/brass. In my opinion, that's how it should sound! Plus, with Bernstein, it sounds like the cellos are screaming in place of the more important lines, which just sounds weird. Maybe it's a first recording bias, since I'm used to hearing Wigglesworth...

I do like some Bernstein, though. I listened to his Resurrection a few years ago and hated it, but this time I thought it sounded good- especially the second movement, which kind of hesitates to play itself, which I think is good to do after that wild opening movement. All the energy is gone and the last thing I want to hear is something that sounds like a folk song- but in this version, it just makes sense. His 9th is very, very good, but I'm not sure his flavor conforms to my palette, especially with the vibrato in the trumpet- it reminds me too much of jazz, and can sound cheesy to me if I pay too much attention to it.

I can't wait to finish listening to Chailly, I have a feeling he might end up being one of my favorite conductors, if not my favorite...
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: Jay F on April 16, 2009, 05:08:52 PM
I have to ask- anyone out there who thinks Mahler 8 is like a drone? Sure, I enjoy it for a few minutes at a time- it's one of the most ecstatic pieces ever written. The problem for me is lack of variation in mood- there's hardly a second which doesn't feel like it's heading towards some joyous apocalyptic orgasm. This is great, but at least for me, it's just too much.

Right now, I've been digging into both Bernstein's and Chailly's sets for the first time. I've heard all of Bernstein and I've heard Chailly's 5th a while ago and thought it was nearly perfect, and have listened to his 10th a few days ago and thought it was as close to perfect as you can get. Seriously, when I listened, I thought I was going to die, it was that good. In contrast to Bernstein's recording of the Adagio, he takes it slower and when that F# major chord opens up, you hear strings, not winds/brass. In my opinion, that's how it should sound! Plus, with Bernstein, it sounds like the cellos are screaming in place of the more important lines, which just sounds weird. Maybe it's a first recording bias, since I'm used to hearing Wigglesworth...

I do like some Bernstein, though. I listened to his Resurrection a few years ago and hated it, but this time I thought it sounded good- especially the second movement, which kind of hesitates to play itself, which I think is good to do after that wild opening movement. All the energy is gone and the last thing I want to hear is something that sounds like a folk song- but in this version, it just makes sense. His 9th is very, very good, but I'm not sure his flavor conforms to my palette, especially with the vibrato in the trumpet- it reminds me too much of jazz, and can sound cheesy to me if I pay too much attention to it.

I can't wait to finish listening to Chailly, I have a feeling he might end up being one of my favorite conductors, if not my favorite...

I have been listening to Chailly for the first time this year, and I share your opinion of his 5th. It's almost impossibly good. Same with his 8th. I could not stop listening to it on Sunday. I listen to it on Sundays a lot, the 8th, usually by Sinopoli or Bernstein (CBS). I used to listen to the 5th a lot on Saturday mornings; the 4th in winter; the 3rd in spring and summer; the 1st in the morning; 7 and 9 at night, anytime of year. 2, anytime of day or year. I think I burned out on the 6th, I've played it so much in the past.
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: greg on April 16, 2009, 06:08:24 PM
I have been listening to Chailly for the first time this year, and I share your opinion of his 5th. It's almost impossibly good. Same with his 8th. I could not stop listening to it on Sunday. I listen to it on Sundays a lot, the 8th, usually by Sinopoli or Bernstein (CBS). I used to listen to the 5th a lot on Saturday mornings; the 4th in winter; the 3rd in spring and summer; the 1st in the morning; 7 and 9 at night, anytime of year. 2, anytime of day or year. I think I burned out on the 6th, I've played it so much in the past.
I think a lot of people think that about the Chailly 5th- when I asked about it, probably a couple thousand pages back on this thread, several people, including M Forever, said it was the best recording.
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: greg on April 17, 2009, 06:31:37 AM
Listened to Chailly 9 last night (outer movements). I think I like the very slow tempo at the beginning of the first movement. Generally, the quiet sections were well-played, but there are some serious balancing issues in this movement- including some moments were you can't even hear the main line. What I'd like to hear is a recording with a very slow tempo at the beginning that gets the balancing right (and has spark) to the louder moments during the development.
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: Renfield on April 17, 2009, 12:16:18 PM
What I'd like to hear is a recording with a very slow tempo at the beginning that gets the balancing right (and has spark) to the louder moments during the development.

Which Bernstein have you heard? And have you heard Klemperer? :)


(Incidentally, I've been away for a while, and will likely be away for a little while more.

If anyone needs something, or I've promised him/her something that I've forgotten, or there's something I should be aware of, let me know!)
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: greg on April 17, 2009, 07:06:26 PM
Actually, for the 9th, what I listened to was this:
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=DZhPE_XFY7I

I have the box set of Bernstein, so I'm just assuming this was the same as from the set. Maybe it's not?...
No, I haven't heard the Klemperer... is his performance what I described?
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: Brünnhilde forever on April 17, 2009, 07:20:51 PM
Right now I am thoroughly enjoying the ten disc collection of Mahler being conducted by Bernard Haitink. He is one of our outstanding, but sadly often neglected conductors - and he is a  contemporary, still very much alive maestro:

Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: imperfection on April 17, 2009, 08:15:53 PM
I do like the Chailly M5 very much, especially for the jaw-dropping sound Decca gives us. The only reservation I have about the performance is the Adagietto -- perhaps I'm too used to Karajan's massive, extremely polished and drop-dead gorgeous rendition.
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: Renfield on April 18, 2009, 06:20:56 AM
Actually, for the 9th, what I listened to was this:
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=DZhPE_XFY7I

I have the box set of Bernstein, so I'm just assuming this was the same as from the set. Maybe it's not?...
No, I haven't heard the Klemperer... is his performance what I described?

Try Bernstein on DG, with the Concertgebouw Orchestra. There are innumerable complaints about how "slow" and "exaggerated" the performance is, but I still agree with the minority(?) who consider it a success; and (if I've understood correctly) it might be very close to what you want. :)


Klemperer (EMI) is one of my benchmark 9ths - and obviously not just mine!

It's measured, a 'reading of proportions', in the Klemperer style, but very effective, and hard to match in terms of balancing the work overall.
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: DavidRoss on April 18, 2009, 07:00:43 AM
Try Bernstein on DG, with the Concertgebouw Orchestra. There are innumerable complaints about how "slow" and "exaggerated" the performance is, but I still agree with the minority(?) who consider it a success; and (if I've understood correctly) it might be very close to what you want. :)
If it's a minority, then (as is often the case) the minority has it right--Lennie's RCO Nine is mighty fine.
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: Jay F on April 18, 2009, 08:46:15 AM
Actually, for the 9th, what I listened to was this:
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=DZhPE_XFY7I

I have the box set of Bernstein, so I'm just assuming this was the same as from the set. Maybe it's not?...
I believe it's the same, the one with the NYPO. It's still my favorite after all these years (21). I am one of those who find the last movement of his DG 9th too slow (though I like the slow 2nd on DG just fine).
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: greg on April 18, 2009, 06:58:40 PM
Try Bernstein on DG, with the Concertgebouw Orchestra. There are innumerable complaints about how "slow" and "exaggerated" the performance is, but I still agree with the minority(?) who consider it a success; and (if I've understood correctly) it might be very close to what you want. :)


Klemperer (EMI) is one of my benchmark 9ths - and obviously not just mine!

It's measured, a 'reading of proportions', in the Klemperer style, but very effective, and hard to match in terms of balancing the work overall.

Excellent- thanks!  :) I'll have to catch that Klemperer.

Ok... i've searched youtube and this is supposedly the DG recording... it doesn't say anywhere on the page but has a cover of that recording on the 3rd video in the set. It sounds like the same tempo as the other, though- maybe it is?  ???

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=BjuWwc-H4IY&feature=PlayList&p=62AE77D835E93C9F&index=0&playnext=1

Also, what do you think of Karajan's recording? This is the one that I've based my observations on...

And... out of sheer curiosity, have you heard Bruno Walter?
phewww i'm done.... i won't bother you any more, I promise.  8)

(fingers crossed behind my back)
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: Renfield on April 18, 2009, 07:47:11 PM
Excellent- thanks!  :) I'll have to catch that Klemperer.

Ok... i've searched youtube and this is supposedly the DG recording... it doesn't say anywhere on the page but has a cover of that recording on the 3rd video in the set. It sounds like the same tempo as the other, though- maybe it is?  ???

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=BjuWwc-H4IY&feature=PlayList&p=62AE77D835E93C9F&index=0&playnext=1

Also, what do you think of Karajan's recording? This is the one that I've based my observations on...

And... out of sheer curiosity, have you heard Bruno Walter?
phewww i'm done.... i won't bother you any more, I promise.  8)

(fingers crossed behind my back)

Right, one by one:


Firstly, yes, that one seems to be the Concertgebouw recording (in the quoted link).


Secondly, which Karajan? The studio version is cooler, and slightly more 'clinical' (but not necessarily less effective) than the live. And of course, suffice it to say, I quite adore both; but Karajan's reading falls under the 'consistent individual interpretation'* class of Mahler 9ths.

Which is not to denigrate it: it's still my favourite Mahler 9th! In combining suavity, compassion, the most heartfelt irk, and that understanding nod towards it all before the end, i.e. the 'Zen' (so to speak) reading of the 9th, I don't think Karajan has a match.

However, this is still the Mahler 9th we're talking about. It's easily complex enough (understatement) a piece to warrant a number of different possible interpretations, views, 'takes', call-them-what-you-will. And Walter, since you mentioned him, sits in the opposite bank (compared to Karajan): his reading - especially in the 1938 incarnation, which you need to hear if you haven't already - is, for lack of a better term, on fire.

And his much later Columbia recording is also worth hearing, even if not quite as definitive IMO. :)


*As opposed to great readings like Klemperer's, that appear to aim more towards fully highlighting the musical content, without any explicit point-making. Of course, you may question whether this distinction exists; still, compare Chailly to late Bernstein (another 'point-making' reading)!


[Bother at will, now that I'm available; if I suddenly stop responding, you may have to wait for a couple of weeks. ;)]
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: greg on April 19, 2009, 06:51:13 PM
Quote
Secondly, which Karajan?
This one:

(http://ecx.images-amazon.com/images/I/5173EVG2HJL._SL500_AA240_.jpg)

Quote
Which is not to denigrate it: it's still my favourite Mahler 9th!
lol! That's the only one I'm very much familiar with- if I just decided to play the whole symphony in my head right now, every note would be Karajan's.
I have to say, Karajan does such an excellent job with clarity, too- even during the messy passages. You can hear everything. It's hard to imagine anyone "beating" him. But I have heard things in the two other recordings I've heard recently (Bernstein, Chailly) which have caught my attention in a positive way, even though they sound different from Karajan- just proving your point that the symphony is highly interpretable, eh?  8)


Quote
And Walter, since you mentioned him, sits in the opposite bank (compared to Karajan): his reading - especially in the 1938 incarnation, which you need to hear if you haven't already - is, for lack of a better term, on fire.
I'll think of fire when I listen.  ;D
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: Diletante on April 25, 2009, 10:54:41 AM
Listened to the 6th for the first time last night (again from Sinopoli's cycle). Very nice, most of it sounded "typically Mahler" to my ears. There was a part where the music got quiet and you could hear seemingly random percussion in the background (in the 3rd movement, I think). I thought that part sounded really modern, which is a plus in my book.  :)

Big surprise in the end, though. I was listening to those very quiet and entrancing notes in the end. I got very close to the speakers, trying to catch all the fading notes. I was about to turn the volume up so as to not miss any, when BAM!!!!  :o.

Made me jump all right!  ;D

Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: Sergeant Rock on April 25, 2009, 11:28:27 AM
Listened to the 6th for the first time last night (again from Sinopoli's cycle). Very nice, most of it sounded "typically Mahler" to my ears. There was a part where the music got quiet and you could hear seemingly random percussion in the background (in the 3rd movement, I think). I thought that part sounded really modern, which is a plus in my book.  :)

Big surprise in the end, though. I was listening to those very quiet and entrancing notes in the end. I got very close to the speakers, trying to catch all the fading notes. I was about to turn the volume up so as to not miss any, when BAM!!!!  :o.

Made me jump all right!  ;D

 ;D :D ;D  ...yeah, that moment will do that to you. I remember playing my first recording the first time (I'd already heard it live, in Cleveland, Szell conducting). I knew what to expect...but the cat didn't! She was so startled she jumped straight up a good five feet  :D  Actually, that moment still takes me by surprise--the emotional intensity--every single time I hear it.

Sarge
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: Lilas Pastia on April 26, 2009, 01:29:03 PM
I've always likened that descent to the threshold of audibility to the reverse of Fafner's awakening in Siegfried. More power to Mahler to have followed it by that frightening sonic explosion. Every good version I've heard makes more of that moment than the two hammerblows combined. Truly one of the most startling effects in all music, equalled only by the savage bass drum thwacks in Verdi's Requiem (Dies Irae).

Something simply unheard of, it punches you in the solar plexus.
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: greg on April 26, 2009, 04:50:50 PM
Was there ever a more 'Nihilistic' work written before the 6th?
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: Sergeant Rock on April 28, 2009, 12:31:49 AM
Was there ever a more 'Nihilistic' work written before the 6th?

Perhaps certain viol consort music of the 17th century (Purcell comes to mind) but other than that I can't think of any music written before the 20th century whose message is so hopelessly dark. Whenever I've heard the Sixth live, the applause seems incongruous. What are we clapping for? our certain death? I think the audience should remain silent after the final movement, and stay silent until they're in a place where large whiskeys are served  ;D

Sarge
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: The new erato on April 28, 2009, 01:29:27 AM
The Gergiev 8th got a stunning review in the latest IRR issue. Anybody heard it?
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: Florestan on April 28, 2009, 02:17:41 AM
Perhaps certain viol consort music of the 17th century (Purcell comes to mind) but other than that I can't think of any music written before the 20th century whose message is so hopelessly dark.

Mozart's C minor Piano Concerto KV 491 fits the bill for me.
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: Renfield on April 28, 2009, 06:41:36 AM
The Gergiev 8th got a stunning review in the latest IRR issue. Anybody heard it?

As often with releases of this sort (and as I'm collecting the Gergiev cycle), I have it, but have not listened to it yet. In fact, I hadn't even listened to his 2nd until about last week, so I wouldn't necessarily hold my breath over my thoughts on it, if I were you. ;)

P.S.: That having been said, Gergiev's treatment of the choral part of the 2nd bodes very well indeed for the 8th.
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: greg on April 28, 2009, 11:31:04 AM
Perhaps certain viol consort music of the 17th century (Purcell comes to mind) but other than that I can't think of any music written before the 20th century whose message is so hopelessly dark. Whenever I've heard the Sixth live, the applause seems incongruous. What are we clapping for? our certain death? I think the audience should remain silent after the final movement, and stay silent until they're in a place where large whiskeys are served  ;D

Sarge
I think you'd agree with the guy who wrote the top comment on this page  ;D :
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=QheCUBmKD5s&feature=related

(a performance I really like, btw, although I don't like his occasional halt at the end of bars with notes connecting to phrases to the next measure...)
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: jlaurson on April 30, 2009, 04:02:19 AM
FYI

http://www.weta.org/fmblog/?p=518 (http://www.weta.org/fmblog/?p=518)

Mahler, Introduction 1.1

Much more to follow when WETA starts its (as yet not scheduled) Mahler-Month.
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: Jay F on April 30, 2009, 04:20:54 AM
FYI

http://www.weta.org/fmblog/?p=518 (http://www.weta.org/fmblog/?p=518)

Mahler, Introduction 1.1

Much more to follow when WETA starts its (as yet not scheduled) Mahler-Month.
What a lovely, wonderful article, Jens.

Do you know if other PBS stations will be broadcasting Mahler Month?
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: DavidRoss on April 30, 2009, 06:54:32 AM
What a lovely, wonderful article, Jens.
I particularly enjoyed this line: "‘Determination’ in Mahler is like a hammer hitting a pool of mercury."  I also agree that Mahler is incomprehensible without some understanding of fin-de-siècle Vienna.
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: Jay F on April 30, 2009, 11:26:52 AM
I particularly enjoyed this line: "‘Determination’ in Mahler is like a hammer hitting a pool of mercury."  I also agree that Mahler is incomprehensible without some understanding of fin-de-siècle Vienna.
I come by it genetically, I guess, my love of Mahler. My mother's father was born in fin-de-siècle Vienna.
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: jlaurson on April 30, 2009, 01:12:23 PM
FYI
http://www.weta.org/fmblog/?p=518 (http://www.weta.org/fmblog/?p=518)
Mahler, Introduction 1.1
Much more to follow when WETA starts its (as yet not scheduled) Mahler-Month.

What a lovely, wonderful article, Jens.

Do you know if other PBS stations will be broadcasting Mahler Month?

Thanks for the kind words.

That's the first 1/3 of just the introduction to a 40 page piece on my favorite versions of the symphonies... snipped off at the end according to word-count. But it works surprisingly well as a stand-alone, I would like to think.

----

I don't know of any other stations that will do a Mahler month... this is solely a local decision if & when it happens. And if so, it'll be because WETA's program manager has built up his "drive time credits" with tenacious Vivaldi- and Spohr-playing to the point where he can indulge us Mahler-nuts thus and thereby go a quite a bit beyond the established consensus of what works well on radio and what doesn't.

I, for one, very much hope that if Mahler month commences, it will be a success and that people will actually congratulate the station for doing that in a time when classical music on radio in the US (outside a few metropolitan areas, perhaps) is not only on the decline but also moving toward greater blandness and predictability. We'll see how things work out. I have my hopes up for some time this summer, maybe.

Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: Sergeant Rock on May 01, 2009, 01:57:11 AM
http://www.weta.org/fmblog/?p=518 (http://www.weta.org/fmblog/?p=518)
Mahler, Introduction 1.1
Much more to follow when WETA starts its (as yet not scheduled) Mahler-Month.

"...there are moments in his symphonies where the music seems more disoriented than a butterfly with ADD."

 ;D :D ;D ...wonderfully descriptive metaphor. Looking forward to the rest of the article.

Sarge
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: Jay F on May 01, 2009, 02:33:20 AM
I don't know of any other stations that will do a Mahler month... this is solely a local decision if & when it happens. And if so, it'll be because WETA's program manager has built up his "drive time credits" with tenacious Vivaldi- and Spohr-playing to the point where he can indulge us Mahler-nuts thus and thereby go a quite a bit beyond the established consensus of what works well on radio and what doesn't.

I, for one, very much hope that if Mahler month commences, it will be a success and that people will actually congratulate the station for doing that in a time when classical music on radio in the US (outside a few metropolitan areas, perhaps) is not only on the decline but also moving toward greater blandness and predictability. We'll see how things work out. I have my hopes up for some time this summer, maybe.

I have e-mailed my local classical station (WQED) your article and the Carnegie Hall announcement. I hope they'll be interested enough. WQED went nuts over Mahler a few years back when the Pittsburgh Symphony went to Rome and played M2 for the Pope. But mostly it's Baroque and the Single-Movement Movement that get airtime here (though they do air a considerable portion of chamber music I enjoy).
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: Jay F on May 10, 2009, 10:25:40 AM
I'm listening to a M6 I almost never play, the one by Mitropolous. I didn't like it much when I first bought it, dismissing the first movement as "slow" (Bernstein's on CBS is my favorite, and my imprint, version, so...), but today, over headphones, I'm getting more of a sense of tragedy from Mitropolous than I usually perceive from Bernstein's. It's more the theme for Totalitarianism Takes Over than other versions, at least the first movement. It's more bleak-sounding all over, I'd say, than Bernstein's. I don't think I like it more, but it's a lot more interesting than I orginally thought.
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: jlaurson on May 10, 2009, 01:53:40 PM
I'm listening to a M6 I almost never play, the one by Mitropolous. I didn't like it much when I first bought it, dismissing the first movement as "slow" (Bernstein's on CBS is my favorite, and my imprint, version, so...), but today, over headphones, I'm getting more of a sense of tragedy from Mitropolous than I usually perceive from Bernstein's. It's more the theme for Totalitarianism Takes Over than other versions, at least the first movement. It's more bleak-sounding all over, I'd say, than Bernstein's. I don't think I like it more, but it's a lot more interesting than I orginally thought.

Mitropolous in the 6th (WDR for me, not NYP--which I don't have) is, for me, about as good as it gets (sound quality apart, obviously). Bleak, craggy, harsh, brutal... relentless and unforgiving. Arrrgh! Barbirolli is of the same mold (http://ionarts.blogspot.com/2009/01/dip-your-ears-no-95.html).
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: Jay F on May 10, 2009, 07:06:33 PM
Mitropolous in the 6th (WDR for me, not NYP--which I don't have) is, for me, about as good as it gets (sound quality apart, obviously). Bleak, craggy, harsh, brutal... relentless and unforgiving. Arrrgh! Barbirolli is of the same mold (http://ionarts.blogspot.com/2009/01/dip-your-ears-no-95.html).

Nice review of the Barbirolli. Has anyone heard all of the four EMI versions? http://www.amazon.com/s/ref=nb_ss_m_9_9?url=search-alias%3Dpopular&field-keywords=mahler+6+barbirolli&x=0&y=0&sprefix=mahler+6+
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: jlaurson on May 10, 2009, 11:15:19 PM
Nice review of the Barbirolli. Has anyone heard all of the four EMI versions? http://www.amazon.com/s/ref=nb_ss_m_9_9?url=search-alias%3Dpopular&field-keywords=mahler+6+barbirolli&x=0&y=0&sprefix=mahler+6+

3 out of 4. The GroC is the best, SQ-wise (least noise, at least)... but with B's kind of performance, the not-HiFi sound of the Rouge et Noir kind of adds to the atmosphere. Even after knowing the difference I'd not actually go out of my way to replace it (or the gEMIni) with the GRoC. And of course the GRoC has re-re-arranged the movements to fit Barbirolli's intentions (and again-Mahler standard) of "Andante-Scherzo". Barbirolli's intentions notwithstanding, it's just the kind of performance that yearns for "Scherzo-Andante", so that's a disadvantage for me. (Sure we could program our CD players to get around that, but really: who ever does that? CD in, click play, listen. We're all(*) lazy.)

Cheers,

jfl


* Everyone to whom this doesn't apply is hereby exempted. Don't waste a post on telling me that you are not lazy, please.
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: Renfield on May 11, 2009, 02:26:02 AM
I admire Mitropoulos' Cologne 6th a lot, as well. It's uniquely crushing, in the brutal sense of the word, among the (fairly many) 6ths I'm acquainted with. But I also have the New York broadcast from the recent Music & Arts "Mitropoulos Edition", which I do need to spin before long!
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: Jay F on May 11, 2009, 04:13:42 AM
Something else I listened to again last night, and find very interesting, is Levine's 7th. It's another one where you get to stop and smell the roses, i.e., all those interesting little details with which Mahler packed this symphony. Excluding the last movement, it's hard for me to understand why this symphony is considered the least, or the worst, of the ten. I like it better -- have always liked it better -- than most of the rest. Of course, it took me no time at all to fall in love with Mahler's music in general, twenty-some years ago.
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: MDL on May 13, 2009, 12:17:19 PM
Flicking through the Southbank brochure last night, I realised that during the winter2009/spring2010 season, there are four performances of Mahler's Resurrection Symphony (two from Jurowski, one each from Inbal and Alsop). Love Maher 2 as I do, I still can't help thinking that that's too much of a good thing.
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: Brewski on May 13, 2009, 12:33:56 PM
Flicking through the Southbank brochure last night, I realised that during the winter2009/spring2010 season, there are four performances of Mahler's Resurrection Symphony (two from Jurowski, one each from Inbal and Alsop). Love Maher 2 as I do, I still can't help thinking that that's too much of a good thing.

That does seem a bit excessive!  ???

--Bruce
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: karlhenning on May 14, 2009, 09:02:05 AM
Here; I knew this would happen!  Bruce finally gets a day off from the Mahler-a-Go-Go, and he completely shuts down!  ;D
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: MDL on May 14, 2009, 12:20:21 PM
That does seem a bit excessive!  ???

--Bruce

Of the four (because it would be stupid not to catch at least one), I think I'll go for the second Jurowski/LPO performance, which is coupled with Kurtag's astounding Stele. The Inbal and Alsop performances are with the Philharmonia.
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: Lilas Pastia on May 16, 2009, 04:23:53 PM
The Bonghartz 6th is back at BRO  !!

Quote
Label: WEITBLICK
BRO Code: 127153
Label Cat. #: SSS 0053-2
Mahler, Symphony #6. (Leipzig Radio Orchestra/ Heinz Bongartz. Rec. 6/30/69)    
Add to Cart
Price: $6.99

Don't be misled by the relatively unknown orchestra, conductor, recording date and label.  It's one of the great, defining performances of the work. It should please those who swear by Barbirolli's pesante version but secretly wish he'd be slightly more aggressive.
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: greg on May 18, 2009, 08:57:24 AM
I am reeeeallly liking Tennstedt. Listened to the first three symphonies, and they are some of the best I've heard. It was odd to hear the Finale of the 3rd being played so fast, but it seemed to work great, and had just as much punch as any other recording. The brass sounds so perfect and clear in that movement, too.

Also, finished listening to Kaplan's Mahler 2nd I was talking about and also listened to Kondrashin's 6th and Ormandy's 10th. Well, the Kondrashin was amusing, though not much else (being one of the very fastest 6ths out there) and Ormandy's 10th is extremely well-played. I haven't heard better middle movements than this, and they're played so well that the performance almost convinces me to like them. The opening movement, though, is just way too fast for my taste, so I'd still take Chailly over Ormandy just because of that.

And I finished listening to Kubelik's set. The set is okay, but my favorite was definitely the 4th. I thought there couldn't be a recording better than Szell's out there until I heard this one. Szell is more danceable and precise, but Kubelik just seems more fun.
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: imperfection on May 19, 2009, 07:57:43 PM
I am reeeeallly liking Tennstedt. Listened to the first three symphonies, and they are some of the best I've heard. It was odd to hear the Finale of the 3rd being played so fast, but it seemed to work great, and had just as much punch as any other recording. The brass sounds so perfect and clear in that movement, too.

Also, finished listening to Kaplan's Mahler 2nd I was talking about and also listened to Kondrashin's 6th and Ormandy's 10th. Well, the Kondrashin was amusing, though not much else (being one of the very fastest 6ths out there) and Ormandy's 10th is extremely well-played. I haven't heard better middle movements than this, and they're played so well that the performance almost convinces me to like them. The opening movement, though, is just way too fast for my taste, so I'd still take Chailly over Ormandy just because of that.

And I finished listening to Kubelik's set. The set is okay, but my favorite was definitely the 4th. I thought there couldn't be a recording better than Szell's out there until I heard this one. Szell is more danceable and precise, but Kubelik just seems more fun.

Interesting...to me, the finale of the 3rd is the movement that practically begs for a Celibidachean interpretation: broad, majestic, spiritual; but above all, utterly beautiful and soulful.
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: Brünnhilde forever on May 19, 2009, 08:08:30 PM
Celibidache conducted only one Mahler: Kindertotenlieder; his opinion of Mahler: "He didn't know when to stop."  :o
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: ChamberNut on May 20, 2009, 08:07:23 AM
Last weekend, I watched the DVD of Mahler's 9th WSO Andrey Boreyko (Spring 2006) (not commercially available).

Incredible performance!  And most fascinating was watching the 20+ minutes of footage on the rehearsal of Symphony No. 9.  Very, very interesting, and incredibly insightful for a numbskull like me.  It was riveting to listen to Boreyko trying to draw exactly out of the various musicians what he was interpretting from the score.  Seeing that is making me want to attend every rehearsal of all the performances in the future I'd be seeing!  ;D

Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: greg on May 20, 2009, 10:47:05 AM
Interesting...to me, the finale of the 3rd is the movement that practically begs for a Celibidachean interpretation: broad, majestic, spiritual; but above all, utterly beautiful and soulful.
I think we have the opposite taste in recordings!  :D

When I think about it, there may be an explanation to my preference. The harmonies are so simple in this movement that when played very slow (like every version I've heard until now), it just ends up sounding bland and boring.
Compared to, say, the Adagio of the 10th, which is much more harmonically complex, it needs to be extremely slow for me to work. So, I guess to explain what works for me when it comes to Mahler Adagios is kinda like a balance of two things- tempo and harmonic complexity.

It just sounds like all the lines sing instead of just create some type of atmosphere. The tempo seems nervous and like it's about to break up at times to very dramatic effect, and it does get very slow at key moments to convey the atmosphere. Other recordings sound like they have only atmosphere- so this recording just sounds more dynamic, since I hear both.
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: Wilhelm Richard on May 23, 2009, 05:16:24 AM
Lost Mahler symphonies?
(From Egon Gartenberg Mahler: The Man and His Music

Quote
The musicologist Dr. Paul Stefan noted that: "Mengelberg felt that the Mahler First Symphony exhibited such perfection that it had not been a first. His conjecture was borne out when he discovered four youthful symphonies of Mahler in the archives of Baroness Weber, the wife of Carl Maria von Weber's grandson, in Dresden. After examination, Mengelberg and [composer] Max von Schilling actually played the scores on the piano, being so fascinated with them that they took all night and did not finish until six in the morning." Nothing further has been heard of these symphonies, and if they existed (and we have no reason to doubt Mengelberg's account) they presumably were destroyed by the British bombing attack on Dresden in 1945.

Anybody know anything else about this?
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: Renfield on May 23, 2009, 07:52:07 AM
[On the above:]

Fascinating!

I've also wondered, at times, at the stylistic maturity of the first symphony, so it doesn't seem inconceivable to me that this might be the case. It is a hopeful side-effect of the digital era that such archives will not be as easy to destroy, in future times...
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: DavidRoss on May 23, 2009, 08:13:56 AM
I've also wondered, at times, at the stylistic maturity of the first symphony....
Well, apparently he starting working on this material while in his teens, so by the time of the final version in 1906, he'd been massaging it for 30 years.
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: Renfield on May 23, 2009, 10:33:32 AM
Well, apparently he starting working on this material while in his teens, so by the time of the final version in 1906, he'd been massaging it for 30 years.

The highlighted would also be a very good point on its own, that I wasn't taking into consideration.
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: jlaurson on May 24, 2009, 04:55:12 AM
[On the above:]

Fascinating!

I've also wondered, at times, at the stylistic maturity of the first symphony...

Conducting great music, ALL. THE. TIME.?  ;D

And of course fiddling with it over many years and writing some fine music --with vocals and chamber-- prior to that.
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: DavidRoss on May 24, 2009, 05:31:05 AM
Conducting great music, ALL. THE. TIME.?  ;D

And of course fiddling with it over many years and writing some fine music --with vocals and chamber-- prior to that.
He began earning his living as a professional conductor at age twenty.  He was almost thirty when the first performance of the first version was given, at which time he did not call it a symphony, but a "Symphonic Poem in Two Parts."  Four years later, after substantial revisions, he premiered it as a programmatic symphony called Titan.  If you are not already familiar with it, Renfield, you might be interested in Das Klagende Lied, written when he was a student in Vienna.
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: Renfield on May 24, 2009, 11:33:38 AM
If you are not already familiar with it, Renfield, you might be interested in Das Klagende Lied, written when he was a student in Vienna.

I am indeed very interested. Despite my admiration (bordering on adulation) for Mahler, I have so far avoided straying from his complete symphonic works to any consistent extent, with the exception of the Rückert and Kindertotenlieder.

But it might just be the time for me to hear Das Klagende Lied, at the very least... Thanks for the nudge. :)
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: jlaurson on May 24, 2009, 11:45:02 AM
I am indeed very interested. Despite my admiration (bordering on adulation) for Mahler, I have so far avoided straying from his complete symphonic works to any consistent extent, with the exception of the Rückert and Kindertotenlieder.

But it might just be the time for me to hear Das Klagende Lied, at the very least... Thanks for the nudge. :)

May I -- out of pure and honest curiosity [no judgmental overtones intended, at all... though I admit to being a tad perplexed] -- ask why?
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: knight66 on May 24, 2009, 12:47:41 PM
Eugene, You asked me about a Mahler 9 by Judd.

Here is a link, though my copy was issued under the Regis label.

http://www.amazon.co.uk/Mahler-Symphony-9-Gustav/dp/B00004S2WE/ref=sr_1_2?ie=UTF8&s=music&qid=1243201156&sr=1-2

It is a two disc set, the 9th with the Mahler Youth Orchestra and the Adagio from the 10th played by the European Community Youth Orch; Judd conducts both. The 9th is a surprisingly good version. There is not the gut wrenching of Barbirolli in the first movement, much more a serenity and turbulence, but not that angst I pick up from Barbirolli or Maderna, but there is plenty of contrast in there and excellent playing.

Mike
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: Wilhelm Richard on May 25, 2009, 03:25:26 AM
But it might just be the time for me to hear Das Klagende Lied, at the very least... Thanks for the nudge. :)

You may be in for a surprise.  ;)
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: Brünnhilde forever on May 27, 2009, 03:01:22 PM
Mailman brought me the box set of the special Mahler edition Kerstmatinees, Bernard Haitink conducting the Koninklijk Concertgebouworkest, and I'll be in Mahler Emporium for a pleasant long time!

Today I watched the first disc, the 1st Symphony recorded in December 1977. It wasn't too long ago when I watched Haitink conduct the same symphony in 1994 with the Berlin Philharmonie, seventeen years apart, there definitely is a difference. It seemed to be much more intense, slower, with emphasis on all the beautiful introspective passages causing me to hold my breath, so as not to disturb the intrinsic structure.

I recall a rehearsal with Claudio Abbado and the Berliners, the hornists played in the last movement standing with their instruments raised, - as Mahler asked his players, - but Abbado told them while he conducts they may remain seated. Not so Haitink: They stood, everyone of them! Glorious music-making!
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: jlaurson on May 27, 2009, 11:06:49 PM
Mailman brought me the box set of the special Mahler edition Kerstmatinees.

Congrats. It's a lovely, very lovely (in Haitink-typical unspectacular manner). set.

Not something to rock your world, but something to cherish.
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: Brewski on May 28, 2009, 08:02:35 AM
Mailman brought me the box set of the special Mahler edition Kerstmatinees, Bernard Haitink conducting the Koninklijk Concertgebouworkest, and I'll be in Mahler Emporium for a pleasant long time!

Today I watched the first disc, the 1st Symphony recorded in December 1977. It wasn't too long ago when I watched Haitink conduct the same symphony in 1994 with the Berlin Philharmonie, seventeen years apart, there definitely is a difference. It seemed to be much more intense, slower, with emphasis on all the beautiful introspective passages causing me to hold my breath, so as not to disturb the intrinsic structure.

I recall a rehearsal with Claudio Abbado and the Berliners, the hornists played in the last movement standing with their instruments raised, - as Mahler asked his players, - but Abbado told them while he conducts they may remain seated. Not so Haitink: They stood, everyone of them! Glorious music-making!

Lis, I'm envious.  I have the CD set, which I love, but I'd bet seeing them would be even more satisfying.  Where did you get it?  (My apologies if you've mentioned it already.) 

--Bruce
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: Brünnhilde forever on May 28, 2009, 08:32:00 AM
No, Luv, I did not mention the source of this treasure before, it was one of our Dutch friends and it should be found here. You look, I look, and we see what we come up with. The seller is a company in Amsterdam - I think! - very friendly when I contacted him by email, and even though he was out of that set, he looked around and found a small supply some place else and sent me one, after I paid him by PayPal.

On disc 1 I watched yesterday, together with the Mahler No. 1, is also Lieder eines Fahrenden Gesellen with Benjamin Luxon. Wellllll, I have heard better Gesellen, but that's not Haitink's fault!  :-[
 
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: Brünnhilde forever on May 28, 2009, 08:36:12 AM
Now that was easy, Bruce!  ;D
Thanks to the efficiency of my Outlook Express, who had automatically added the Dutch company's email to my addressbook, here it is:

Bergmann, Muziekhandel
E-mail Address(es):
  cd@bergmann.nl

Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: Brewski on May 28, 2009, 08:39:22 AM
Now that was easy, Bruce!  ;D
Thanks to the efficiency of my Outlook Express, who had automatically added the Dutch company's email to my addressbook, here it is:

Bergmann, Muziekhandel
E-mail Address(es):
  cd@bergmann.nl

Ah, dank u wel, Lis!   :D

--Bruce
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: Brünnhilde forever on May 29, 2009, 09:51:46 AM

Not something to rock your world, but something to cherish.

Then please, Jens, who would rock my world? Eh em, no conductors departed the world, RIP. Tell me about live ones, the conductors and orchestras rocking your world when conducting Mahler?  ???

I watched Mahler's 3rd yesterday. What a production! Audience packed like sardines; excellent camera work, nice touch with the trumpeter standing in the hallway for his solos effectively using the super acoustic, and Haitink much more agitated in 1983 than in recent performances. That one is a keeper and cherished very, very much!  ;)
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: jlaurson on May 29, 2009, 10:01:22 AM
Then please, Jens, who would rock my world? Eh em, no conductors departed the world, RIP. Tell me about live ones, the conductors and orchestras rocking your world when conducting Mahler?  ???

I watched Mahler's 3rd yesterday. What a production! Audience packed like sardines; excellent camera work, nice touch with the trumpeter standing in the hallway for his solos effectively using the super acoustic, and Haitink much more agitated in 1983 than in recent performances. That one is a keeper and cherished very, very much!  ;)

Are we talking live?

Mahler that recently grabbed me by my.... [no, calm down now: I meant] LAPELS, was conducted by Jurowski. (http://www.weta.org/fmblog/?p=539 (http://www.weta.org/fmblog/?p=539))

Stylistically Ivan Fischer is probably closer to Haitink than he is to being a gritty lapel-grabber, but his Mahler can have the same effect.

In any case, it wasn't meant disparagingly in any way shape or form toward Haitink. He'd still be among the first to whose Mahler concerts I'd run. (Ditto MTT, Chailly!!, probably Bychkov...
His recent 4th with the RCO (Haitink's, that is) was stupendous and went straight to the top of my (extensive, more than I should like to admit) list (http://ionarts.blogspot.com/2008/12/best-recordings-of-2008.html).

My radio station will probably make one of this year's months "Mahler Month" (which is more gutsy for a public classical radio station than it would seem to us Mahler-lovers), so I'll have a chance to finally publish my Mahler-recording articles that I've been writing, amending, and hording for the last four years. The first 3rd of just the introduction has already made it unto the website (http://www.weta.org/fmblog/?p=518).) Some more here: http://www.weta.org/fmblog/?p=168 (http://www.weta.org/fmblog/?p=168), some here (http://ionarts.blogspot.com/2006/08/mahler-reviews-on-ionarts.html).

More than you bargained for?  ;D
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: Brünnhilde forever on May 29, 2009, 05:27:47 PM
l=http://ionarts.blogspot.com/2006/08/mahler-reviews-on-ionarts.html]here[/url].

More than you bargained for?  ;D

Definitely not! I always look forward to your posts, the more the merrier; especially this one because you mentioned one of my favourite, young, vibrant and intelligent conductors: Vladimir Jurowski. It was a few years ago, 2? 3? when I was watching a DVD of Die Fledermaus, a Glyndebourne production, and onto the podium stepped  this young, stunningly good looking male specimen - yes, grabbing me by  ::)  ::)  ::) - , fearing his looks being the only worthwhile attribute. Surprise! This hunk is an awesome conductor! I think it was his first appearance at Glyndebourne and from there on he just kept on going up and up and up. I didn't know he did a Mahler! Thank you for the link!  :-*

I was aware you are connected to WETA, for some reason I never tried to add this NPR station to my Favourites. Wonder if they are one of the rare NPR stations broadcasting the Saturday Met operas. Shall check on that, because my NWPR refuses to broadcast anything on a Saturday morning except that guy from Lake Woebegone - to be repeated the following Sunday afternoon. ::)

Have you listened to the Gergiev Mahler No. 8? And comment?

Lis

Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: DavidRoss on May 29, 2009, 05:31:07 PM
Lis, for Met opera broadcasts tune to KXPR, Captal Public Radio in Sacramento. http://www.capradio.org/programs/classicalmusic/ (http://www.capradio.org/programs/classicalmusic/)
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: Brünnhilde forever on May 29, 2009, 05:34:08 PM
Are we talking live?


Sorry, forgot: No, we are not talking live. I have to drive three hours and over two mountain passes to get to Seattle, the nearest chance for experiencing anything, opera and concert, LIVE  :'(

That's why I eliminated the guest room and now have a nice music room!   ;)
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: Brünnhilde forever on May 29, 2009, 05:36:49 PM
Lis, for Met opera broadcasts tune to KXPR, Captal Public Radio in Sacramento. http://www.capradio.org/programs/classicalmusic/ (http://www.capradio.org/programs/classicalmusic/)

Thank you, Luv! It's now listed on my Favourites.  :-*
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: DavidRoss on May 29, 2009, 05:39:50 PM
Thank you, Luv! It's now listed on my Favourites.  :-*
Friday nights are also given over to opera broadcasts, from recordings.  Tonight is some kind of listener favorite call-in show, but usually Sean plays a complete opera recording.
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: jlaurson on May 29, 2009, 09:40:56 PM
Lis, for Met opera broadcasts tune to KXPR, Captal Public Radio in Sacramento. http://www.capradio.org/programs/classicalmusic/ (http://www.capradio.org/programs/classicalmusic/)

No, no no. Listen to WETA for your MET broadcasts!  ;D

WETA is also working on a dedicated Opera/Voice internet channel which might be of interest to you, once it is up. (This was a big success with listeners when the station that broadcast classical in DC before WETA re-assumed its classical responsibilities, but as everything else in life, it has to be financed, first... so it took and will take a while to get back up and running.)

I've heard most of the Mahler with Gergiev on CD, but not the 8th. So far I've liked absolutely nothing in that series... Disappointing, as I had particularly high hopes of a ravishing 6th, unwashed and gritty... and then it was another sight-reading effort of the LSO. Argh. Maddening orchestra. And maddeningly inconsistent conductor.
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: DavidRoss on May 30, 2009, 04:41:27 AM
I've heard most of the Mahler with Gergiev on CD, but not the 8th. So far I've liked absolutely nothing in that series...
Of course it's a case of contempt prior to investigation, but I've not heard any of Gergiev's Mahler, thinking the two go together like lobsters and motor oil.
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: Brünnhilde forever on May 30, 2009, 05:03:39 AM
I shouldn't, but I say it anyhow: Gergiev and Mahler? Gergiev and cowbells, cuckoos, sunrise and alpine peaks have never met and never will!
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: karlhenning on May 30, 2009, 05:08:38 AM
(* sigh *) I'm feelin' the love here  8)
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: Brünnhilde forever on May 30, 2009, 07:44:20 AM
I've not heard any of Gergiev's Mahler, thinking the two go together like lobsters and motor oil.

 ;D :D ;D 8)  :-*

Voted the post of the year!
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: Wanderer on May 30, 2009, 08:51:58 AM
Of course it's a case of contempt prior to investigation, but I've not heard any of Gergiev's Mahler, thinking the two go together like lobsters and motor oil.

Or labdanum and biscotti?  ;D
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: ChamberNut on May 30, 2009, 08:58:44 AM
Of course it's a case of contempt prior to investigation, but I've not heard any of Gergiev's Mahler, thinking the two go together like lobsters and motor oil.

 :'( There goes my BBQ plans for tonight.
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: Brünnhilde forever on May 30, 2009, 09:00:49 AM
Voted running nose to nose with crustaceans and vehicle lubricant!  ;D  ;D  ;D

Isn't anybody out there with an appetising remark about this 8th?  ???
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: Brewski on May 30, 2009, 09:03:17 AM
I wish I could weigh in, but I haven't heard any of Gergiev's Mahler series yet.  Hope to remedy soon. 

--Bruce
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: Brünnhilde forever on May 30, 2009, 09:19:55 AM
Oh Bruce, Luv, never mind hearing or watching any of the Gergiev Mahler's, just let us hear/read your expert caveling!  ;)
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: Brewski on May 30, 2009, 09:22:43 AM
 ;D

I did hear Gergiev and the Kirov do the "Resurrection" a few years ago, and liked it.  The playing was sometimes a little on the scrappy side, but Gergiev definitely "got" the emotional core of the piece.

--Bruce
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: DavidRoss on May 30, 2009, 09:33:12 AM
I did hear Gergiev and the Kirov do the "Resurrection" a few years ago, and liked it.  The playing was sometimes a little on the scrappy side, but Gergiev definitely "got" the emotional core of the piece.
I'd happily hear Gergiev and the Kirov do almost anything--even Debussy!  But I'm not convinced that the LSO really has the requisite cojones for Mahler (apologies to MTT & Jansons, among others  :-\ ).
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: Renfield on May 30, 2009, 12:01:31 PM
My name is Eugene, and I like Gergiev's Mahler. >:D

Or rather, you could say I appreciate what Gergiev is doing with it. I would never rank Gergiev above the 'usual suspects', but he certainly has an opinion on the pieces (already anathema to some, understandably), and does not hesitate in arguing cohesively for it.

It is certainly a very skewed and somewhat browbeating opinion, but still argued for a) consistently, and b) with impressive musical sensitivity (I'd say), compared to consistent-but-bland Solti, for example. Gergiev's 7th is a good case in point: it tramples over a number of nuances in the score, but it's like a proof: it seems to declare "I will show X and Y", and proceeds to do so.

Again, I am not claiming this sort of 'teleological', ends-before-means Mahler should be to everyone's taste, but I have a point of being likely to accept a position cogently and consistently argued for, and musical opinions are no different. :)


Rewinding the thread slightly, due to my not having been available to respond earlier:


The reason I have heard little Mahler beyond his complete symphonic works (note: not the integral symphonic works, I mean his symphonic works that are complete - that is, not the 10th symphony) is down to how I explore symphonic repertory.

Perhaps part of why I like Mahler so much is that I share his predilection for symphonic worlds, vs. symphonic 'exercises'. I am thus inclined to view an entire symphonic oeuvre as a system, the constituents of which (through their being based on their being grouped by the composer himself into one theme, "symphonies") being the individual works that I can thus contextualise and process, or if you will 'understand' within the context of each other.

But once I'm happy with having a general idea of what a specific symphonic oeuvre is (in the loosest possible sense) 'about', I am then equally happy to turn my attention to the works peripheral to it (as I see them).


Also, many thanks again for the Judd recommendation, Mike! I've already added it to my shortlist, and am highly interested in comparing it to the Walter (http://www.amazon.co.uk/Walter-Conducts-Mahler-Gustav/dp/B00005B0HM/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&s=music&qid=1243717084&sr=1-1) I had mentioned, based on what I gather from your description.
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: karlhenning on May 30, 2009, 01:27:59 PM
I did hear Gergiev and the Kirov do the "Resurrection" a few years ago, and liked it.  The playing was sometimes a little on the scrappy side, but Gergiev definitely "got" the emotional core of the piece.

Scrappy playing and Gergiev go together quite well, Bruce  8)
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: Renfield on May 30, 2009, 01:41:26 PM
Let me just add, if it wasn't clear, that Gergiev seems to clearly impose a rationale to each Mahler symphony, but this is itself a contestable point. I am not saying they necessarily have an 'end' that Gergiev 'finds'! :)
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: Que on May 30, 2009, 02:16:47 PM
...
His recent 4th with the RCO (Haitink's, that is) was stupendous and went straight to the top of my (extensive, more than I should like to admit) list (http://ionarts.blogspot.com/2008/12/best-recordings-of-2008.html).

I believe I mentioned this before: I have that Haitink/ Schäfer Mahler 4th and it's nice but IMO Haitink first take with Elly Ameling (with the RCO in 1967) still holds firmly 1st place.

Q
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: Renfield on May 30, 2009, 02:39:50 PM
I believe I mentioned this before: I have that Haitink/ Schäfer Mahler 4th and it's nice but IMO Haitink first take with Elly Ameling (with the RCO in 1967) still holds firmly 1st place.

Q

That's the recording from the commonly-available box set, is it not? I'm more and more tempted to invest in it, at some point... Yet I do have the 3rd already, and might be able to complement it with the 9th and Das Lied from the Philips twofer.

And I've heard that the 1st is not his best account. So are the 2nd, 4th, 5th, 6th, 7th and 8th worth going the extra mile?
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: Que on May 30, 2009, 02:53:08 PM
That's the recording from the commonly-available box set, is it not? I'm more and more tempted to invest in it, at some point... Yet I do have the 3rd already, and might be able to complement it with the 9th and Das Lied from the Philips twofer.

And I've heard that the 1st is not his best account. So are the 2nd, 4th, 5th, 6th, 7th and 8th worth going the extra mile?

On the 4th, I dare not say - I have separate issues and Haitink redid the 4th later with Roberta Alexander (definitely not recommendable). I believe the exact contents of the box have been discussed on this thread before. As for the rest: the 6th is a dud, no comment on the 8th (never "got" it ::)) But the rest is very nice - the 2nd, 7th and 9th especially.

Q
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: Renfield on May 30, 2009, 03:15:55 PM
I believe the exact contents of the box have been discussed on this thread before.

Indeed, I should have checked. And after a brief look I had, it does appear to be the Ameling version in the box set. :)
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: Diletante on May 31, 2009, 08:37:03 AM
Oh my, I'm listening to Das Lied von der Erde for the first time right now (Sinopoli's cycle) and I'm loving it! Which is weird, because all the other symphonies I know (1 through 6) took me a few listens to like. But so far Das Lied is so beautiful, melodic and instantly likeable! I wonder why no one recommends Mahler beginners to start with Das Lied von der Erde?
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: Wanderer on May 31, 2009, 08:57:25 AM
Any insights on Eschenbach's Mahler?
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: Herman on May 31, 2009, 09:32:16 AM
Oh my, I'm listening to Das Lied von der Erde for the first time right now (Sinopoli's cycle) and I'm loving it! Which is weird, because all the other symphonies I know (1 through 6) took me a few listen to like. But so far Das Lied is so beautiful, melodic and instantly likeable! I wonder why no one recommends Mahler beginners to start with Das Lied von der Erde?

Beginning Mahler with a song cycle is a good idea. Maybe some people think the last song of Das Lied is a little tough.
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: jlaurson on May 31, 2009, 10:43:52 AM
Any insights on Eschenbach's Mahler?

Both in concert  (http://ionarts.blogspot.com/2004/12/philadelphia-orchestra-nadia-salerno.html) and more so, still, on disc (http://ionarts.blogspot.com/2007/01/best-recordings-of-2006.html) (excellent 6th) did he positively surprise me. Quite good, indeed.
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: Opus106 on May 31, 2009, 11:21:30 AM
Any insights on Eschenbach's Mahler?

You can download his eighth here (http://www.good-music-guide.com/community/index.php/topic,42.msg245328.html#msg245328).
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: Bunny on May 31, 2009, 01:29:47 PM
Any insights on Eschenbach's Mahler?

Eschenbach's Mahler so far is a mixed bag.  He has a predilection for women with very light vocal timbres so that affects his choice of soloists in the song driven symphonies.  His recording of the 6th is as menacing and crushing as anyone would wish from a 6th.  I know he's got a recording with the Houston Symphony of the Mahler 1st, but I haven't heard that.

I have his recordings of the 6th which as I said before, is excellent, and the 2nd which is slightly less so.  I have also heard him conduct the Philadelphia in the 4th and the 2nd at Carnegie Hall, with mixed results.  The 4th was not an optimal performance. Characterized by ragged play all over the place, it was also cursed with a singer, Marisol Montalves, who just didn't have a voice big enough to fill the hall.  For those critics who didn't like the way Dorothea Röschmann looked on stage, I must say that Montalves looked like the beauty pageant winner she is.  However when you go to a Mahler concert, you aren't there to judge an evening gown competition.  In contrast to the less well dressed Röschmann, Montalves' (I presume light, silvery,) voice was largely inaudible -- a killer for the finale.  

The 2nd was much better, and the chorus sang brilliantly to a rousing finale -- they were the best thing about the concert.  The only fault I can think of is that for some reason the earlier movements didn't generate quite as much emotion and excitement. From the Urlicht through to the finale, however, it was indeed terrific.  The soloists were the same, I believe as in the recording.  Their voices while to my ears a bit too light for Mahler (especially the mezzo whom I did not like as much as the soprano),  were easily heard, and not drowned out by the orchestra as Montalves was to be later in the season.  They also had all of the necessary range, if not heft for the work.  A woman sitting to the side of us went through a pack of Kleenex as the tears streamed down from the Urlicht through the finale, so you will know that all of the right emotional buttons were being pressed. 

The symphony as a whole was very satisfying.  It was aces and spades above Boulez's cold and flat Mahler 2nd which was barely redeemed by excellent vocal performances. 
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: Brünnhilde forever on June 01, 2009, 02:44:00 PM
December 25th, 1987, Concertgebouw Amsterdam, the last strains of Gustav Mahler’s 9th Symphony are floating through the packed house, Mahler’s well-known portrait is being projected onto the famous organ, Maestro Bernard Haitink raises both arms to conduct the last notes of the long fading coda, ..."he opens his right hand and lets the baton clatter to the floor; his last gesture of control at his final Christmas matinee. This was his penultimate concert as Chief Conductor in Amsterdam with only his farewell performance of Mahler’s 8th to follow." [from Kasper Jansen, Music Editor, NRC Handelsblad.]

Then the ovation erupts, and I am breathing again, having spent the afternoon with the DVD of this historical performance.

Thank you, my Dutch friends, who helped me purchase the Philips set.  :-*
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: greg on June 01, 2009, 03:05:22 PM
December 25th, 1987, Concertgebouw Amsterdam, the last strains of Gustav Mahler’s 9th Symphony are floating through the packed house, Mahler’s well-known portrait is being projected onto the famous organ, Maestro Bernard Haitink raises both arms to conduct the last notes of the long fading coda, he opens his right hand and lets the baton clatter to the floor; his last gesture of control at his final Christmas matinee. This was his penultimate cancert as Chief Conductor in Amsterdam with only his farewell performance of Mahler’s 8th to follow. [from Kasper Jansen, Music Editor, NRC Handelsblad.]

Then the ovation erupts, and I am breathing again, having spent the afternoon with the DVD of this historical performance.

Thank you, my Dutch friends, who helped me purchase the Philips set.  :-*

That date is 3 days before I was born. Maybe I should listen to Haitink's Mahler 9...
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: Brünnhilde forever on June 01, 2009, 03:12:55 PM
Yes, that one, and the 7th, my favourite. Goodgod, that man is totally involved in his Mahler, and so are his musicians!  ::)
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: Lilas Pastia on June 01, 2009, 05:29:50 PM
For many Haitink's Mahler is the Word. Simply because he lets this complex music speak for itself and breathe. Of course, having the COA at his disposal (and his lifelong association with it) is part and parcel of the magic. My first association with symphonies 1, 2, 5, 7, 8 and 9 was though his Philips recordings. They not only made a deep impression, but helped expose the errors and exaggerations of 80% of the other recordings I heard afterwards.
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: Senta on June 02, 2009, 12:27:51 AM
Any insights on Eschenbach's Mahler?

Big fan here. His Mahler has come up several times in earlier pages this thread. From what I understand he seems to be stronger in some of the symphonies than others - does anyone have any experience of him #3, 7, or 10? Would love to hear a 7th from him because he is particularly awesome for in the 5th and 6th.

The Ondine Philly recording of the 6th is excellent, very musical, wonderful playing/recording and packs quite a wallop indeed.

Here is a great video too on YouTube (musically might be even better! and at least as good) with Orch de Paris. Somewhere I have links for those I think.

I. (1 (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=7c5SLbRkTxg), 2 (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Bc9anRxIE9s), 3 (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=7c5SLbRkTxg))
II. Scherzo (1 (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=IWU-UKUdw8M), 2 (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=XtngTvNnORs))
III. Andante (1 (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=3zwJ1BljEuE), 2 (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Ydextj1GCS8))
IV. (1 (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ee3xFRCsFCc), 2 (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=IXsAXclRDc0), 3 (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=UGKRgFuOrEs), 4 (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=QheCUBmKD5s))

The 8th - links to download the vid above - here it is on YouTube as well, again w/ Orch de Paris. For some reason, this one isn't as successful to me - he lets the huge arc of the thing meander and wander at times (always hard with the 8th!)

Part I (1 (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=uP_nnMerCoY), 2 (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=vs0Nltc3vX8), 3 (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=0abSbgp7eR0))
Part II (1 (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ULfhIl9pdVY), 2 (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Z15GUjJuK5k), 3 (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=3hkme6Fqzxs), 4 (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=q9jyT1EVu-Q), 5 (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=attz2_DREiM), 6 (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=eGFzeYu9E5w), 7 (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ZjiVrc0QTRw))

The 1st - the recording with Houston is from early 90s on Koch and is certainly very good. Spirited playing and interpretation, a well-done live recording worth a hearing.

The 2nd, 3rd, 4th have radio broadcasts floating around either with NDR, Orch de Paris, maybe 2nd w Philly I haven't checked them out yet due to time and some subdued reviews.

The 9th - there was a recording I was impressed with, from radio with the NDR SO in 1996, great performance.
Here is a link:
http://rapidshare.com/files/239895879/M9EschenbachNDRSO1996.rar

Okay - now the 5th. As said, the 5th and 6th are some of his strongest. It is such a pity he never recorded the 5th with Philadelphia, it might've been a new favorite based on their 6th, and on the fact that his general interpretation for me is close to ideal.

There is a great, great video (in HD!) to watch of them in Japan in 2005:

1st mvmt (1 (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=zdjbkbnkAWk), 2 (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=q95BL0xk8hY))
2nd mvmt (1 (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=HDUBBfH1gLs), 2 (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=o-penLdW3SA))
3rd mvmt (1 (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=2UpDi_c6F8g), 2 (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=f3mtWdBdVqk))
4th mvmt (1 (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Fh2czY4VrnY), 2 (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=LY8N6g1F44s))
5th mvmt (1 (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=P5y2DVAxduI), 2 (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=I7iBuiOS9Gc))

The audio of that is here:
http://rapidshare.com/files/239827495/M5EschenbachPhilly2005Japan.rar

Now - there is an extremely interesting and fantastic recording of his 5th with Houston on tour in Vienna in 1992. This one is fascinating interpretively and as such draws me back to it again and again, plus the playing just catches fire by the 2nd mvmt and they really smoke on through to the end.

Eschenbach goes further than he should with many, many things in that performance, though they follow him perfectly and it certainly makes you think of the music in a different way. I honestly can't say that it doesn't work on some level - it is so musical and committed throughout. There are sections in the 2nd mvmt where he just pulls time like taffy, and no more so than in the Adagietto which is very broad and hangs in the air as a misty timeless haze, it is really unique and special. The Philly recording is far less radical, more mellow and straightforward, but he still makes some of the same points.

Here is the Houston recording, was only on a private subscriber CD:
http://rapidshare.com/files/239815244/M5EschenbachHouston1992Vienna.rar

If you get a chance to stumble on some of their other 90s live recordings too, go for it, the awesome Prokofiev 5, the Bruckner 6 on Koch - but skip the DSCH 5.
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: Wanderer on June 02, 2009, 07:25:00 AM
A lot of illuminating answers so far, thank you all!  8)
I'm going to begin with the Sixth on Ondine as well as the other online resources so far specified.
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: greg on June 06, 2009, 04:57:13 AM
Just finished watching the Mahler movie.
It was enjoyable, given the subject, though I'm not a big fan of that type of style. The guy looked just like Mahler (especially in the profile).
Overall, though, his life doesn't seem that interesting- probably more exciting would be movies of Prokofiev, Shostakovich, Schoenberg, etc. though I have no idea if there are any movies of them.
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: Lilas Pastia on June 06, 2009, 05:37:20 AM
Anyone can comment on the 1956 Mitropoulos 3rd?
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: Opus106 on June 06, 2009, 05:50:14 AM
A question on the use of cowbells in the 6th symphony. It's not a musical instrument per se, but is it specified in the score "how" they should be played, or can the cowbell-ist just make soft sounds anyway he or she (or more likely - the conductor) wants to create a pastoral atmosphere?
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: Drasko on June 06, 2009, 07:13:17 AM
Anyone can comment on the 1956 Mitropoulos 3rd?

Very fast and cut, I'm told. Havent' heard it myself.
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: jlaurson on June 06, 2009, 08:05:24 AM
Anyone can comment on the 1956 Mitropoulos 3rd?

Love Mitrop. in general and in Mahler in particular... but avoid this one. In English and heavily cut and bad sound. Only for those who NEED to have every Mitrop. Mahler recording.
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: ChamberNut on June 06, 2009, 09:22:15 AM
A question on the use of cowbells in the 6th symphony. It's not a musical instrument per se, but is it specified in the score "how" they should be played, or can the cowbell-ist just make soft sounds anyway he or she (or more likely - the conductor) wants to create a pastoral atmosphere?


I think it is specified in the score....I'd actually be shocked if it wasn't.  Navneeth, from hearing and seeing this symphony performed live, the percussionist is taking great care with these cowbells, just at times hardly touching them, gliding over the set gently.  Most of the time it is very faint and subtle.
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: Opus106 on June 06, 2009, 09:27:20 AM
I think it is specified in the score....I'd actually be shocked if it wasn't.  Navneeth, from hearing and seeing this symphony performed live, the percussionist is taking great care with these cowbells, just at times hardly touching them, gliding over the set gently.  Most of the time it is very faint and subtle.

Thanks, Ray. Reply much appreciated. :)
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: ChamberNut on June 06, 2009, 09:30:15 AM
Thanks, Ray. Reply much appreciated. :)

As for the hammer blows.......nothing subtle about them.  Whack the large wooden mallet with all the force your body can project.  ;D ;D
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: Opus106 on June 06, 2009, 09:36:56 AM
http://www.youtube.com/watch/v/UwljE3HsfSM

The cowbell-ists are not cool enough to warrant a YouTube video.
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: Lilas Pastia on June 07, 2009, 02:51:52 AM
Thanks for the Mitropoulos 3rd comments guys!
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: MDL on June 14, 2009, 02:27:55 AM
Just finished watching the Mahler movie.
It was enjoyable, given the subject, though I'm not a big fan of that type of style. The guy looked just like Mahler (especially in the profile).

Do you mean Ken Russell's Mahler, with Robert Powell? That's a quirky little film and no mistake. Some bits I love, other bits I watch through my fingers, the conversion scene especially; Mahler as one of the Groucho brothers, then as Stan Laurel?! Ken, what were you thinking?!

Apologies if you're referring to some other Mahler doc/film, by the way.


Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: Jay F on June 14, 2009, 03:32:59 AM
I saw -- or is it "heard"? -- the Pittsburgh Symphony perform the M2 on Friday night. There were at least a points where one of the percussionists used a hammer. How come no big deal is made of this the way it is in the M6?

It was a splendid performance, especially the last two movements.
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: knight66 on June 14, 2009, 03:47:41 AM
I don't ever recall seeing a hammer used. Here is the list of percussion instruments written into the score:

Percussion
(Requires total of seven players)

Timpani (2 players and 8 timpani, with a third player in the last movement using two of the second timpanist's drums)
Several Snare Drums
Bass Drum
Cymbals
Triangle
Glockenspiel
3 deep, untuned steel rods or bells
Rute, or "switch", to be played on the shell of the bass drum
2 Tam-tams (high and low)
Offstage Percussion in Movement 5:
Bass drum with cymbals attached (played by the same percussionist), Triangle, Timpani

Small hammers may be used for the bells. But if you mean a large mallet, I have no idea what it could have been used for.

Mike
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: greg on June 14, 2009, 04:09:27 AM
Do you mean Ken Russell's Mahler, with Robert Powell? That's a quirky little film and no mistake. Some bits I love, other bits I watch through my fingers, the conversion scene especially; Mahler as one of the Groucho brothers, then as Stan Laurel?! Ken, what were you thinking?!

Apologies if you're referring to some other Mahler doc/film, by the way.



Yep, that's the one. It was somewhat amusing- "I'm going to live forever!"  :D

What does everyone think of Tennstedt's 6th? That's definitely my favorite now- not to mention, the most intense recording I know of.
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: Jay F on June 14, 2009, 05:25:57 AM
I don't ever recall seeing a hammer used. Here is the list of percussion instruments written into the score:

Percussion
(Requires total of seven players)

Timpani (2 players and 8 timpani, with a third player in the last movement using two of the second timpanist's drums)
Several Snare Drums
Bass Drum
Cymbals
Triangle
Glockenspiel
3 deep, untuned steel rods or bells
Rute, or "switch", to be played on the shell of the bass drum
2 Tam-tams (high and low)
Offstage Percussion in Movement 5:
Bass drum with cymbals attached (played by the same percussionist), Triangle, Timpani

Small hammers may be used for the bells. But if you mean a large mallet, I have no idea what it could have been used for.

Mike
Thanks, Mike. I was sitting in the orchestra and the stage was truly packed, so I couldn't see many of the instruments besides the strings. Consequently, I'm not sure exactly what was being hit by the thing I thought was a hammer.
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: Renfield on June 14, 2009, 07:25:12 AM
Yep, that's the one. It was somewhat amusing- "I'm going to live forever!"  :D

What does everyone think of Tennstedt's 6th? That's definitely my favorite now- not to mention, the most intense recording I know of.

Which one? There's a new one that's just come out that I'm chomping at the bit to hear, but the studio-recorded older one (there's a second live version, as well) didn't register as strongly as, say, his 5th.
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: greg on June 14, 2009, 06:15:56 PM
It's the one from his complete box set. True, the brass has quite a few small blunders, but at times, they sound like they are going to come out of your speakers and explode! I've never had the Finale stuck in my head so much and enjoyed it so much as I have recently, all because of that recording. The same could go with the finale of the 3rd.
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: Jay F on June 16, 2009, 06:14:14 AM
It's the one from his complete box set. True, the brass has quite a few small blunders, but at times, they sound like they are going to come out of your speakers and explode! I've never had the Finale stuck in my head so much and enjoyed it so much as I have recently, all because of that recording. The same could go with the finale of the 3rd.

Comparing box sets, after Bernstein's CBS Mahler, I like Tennstedt.
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: Wilhelm Richard on June 16, 2009, 08:05:23 AM
When reading reviews and articles on Tennstedt's Mahler recordings as they were released, one would believe that all agreed (at least in Gramophone Land) that he was the Greatest Mahler Interpretor Ever.  Now, it seems to me as if his Mahler is not often considered too seriously.  What happend?  Or am I just missing something or misunderstanding? 

Personally, I am a huge fan of Tennstedt's studio cycle.  I have not compared it symphony for symphony to any other, but I do know that my first introduction to Mahler came through Bernstein's CBS recordings and I believed I did not like the composer at all for quite a while.  I do know that many have described Tennstedt's live performances as being far superior to his studio recordings, but I have yet to hear any of them.  The studio recordings, however, seem just fine to me.
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: Wilhelm Richard on June 16, 2009, 01:30:52 PM
New blog...

http://www.universaledition.com/mahler/
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: imperfection on June 16, 2009, 01:31:11 PM
It's the one from his complete box set. True, the brass has quite a few small blunders, but at times, they sound like they are going to come out of your speakers and explode! I've never had the Finale stuck in my head so much and enjoyed it so much as I have recently, all because of that recording. The same could go with the finale of the 3rd.

Greg, how is the timing for the finale of the 3rd? I am still searching for a grand, majestic, broad, truly Sehr langsam closing movement to that epic symphony.
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: Wilhelm Richard on June 16, 2009, 01:53:15 PM
Especially good interview...many thoughts I have tried to express myself, but not nearly as eloquently and efficiently as Barenboim.
http://www.universaledition.com/mahler/daniel-barenboim-on-gustav-mahler/#more-312

Quote
No, rather the opposite. I remember many concerts that made me dislike it even more, because I found, in the Mahler concerts I had heard, two extremes. One was sort of exaggeratedly emotional, in the sense that the text was used as an excuse for self-expression on the part of the conductor, sometimes at a very high level. Others withdrew from any kind of emotional content, making it rather dry.

I was ‘allergic’ to what I found at that time to be artificialities in the music.

I also disliked – I’m being very negative on purpose – the fact that Mahler was, and still is, the only composer who is discussed mostly in non-musical terms. Whenever somebody says, “I don’t like Mahler”, or “I love Mahler”, of course, it’s psychoanalysis – Sigmund Freud and all these things. And I think this is terrible. You would never think or talk about Beethoven like that, about the deafness or whatever else it may be, or about Chopin’s tuberculosis. In other words, the biography of the composer, and the musical diary which he writes – all great composers’ works are musical diaries – are not really related. Beethoven wrote some of the most positive music at a time of complete distress, and vice versa.
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: greg on June 16, 2009, 02:04:47 PM
Greg, how is the timing for the finale of the 3rd? I am still searching for a grand, majestic, broad, truly Sehr langsam closing movement to that epic symphony.
Oh, then you won't like Tennstedt then. Timing is 20:38. The reason why I fell in love with his interpretation is because it's the opposite of how you describe!  ;D It's nervous, agitated, and very powerful.
Maybe you should try Chailly? His 3rd is my favorite, but for that last movement, I'd choose Tennstedt without thinking twice.
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: imperfection on June 16, 2009, 04:14:06 PM
Oh, then you won't like Tennstedt then. Timing is 20:38. The reason why I fell in love with his interpretation is because it's the opposite of how you describe!  ;D It's nervous, agitated, and very powerful.
Maybe you should try Chailly? His 3rd is my favorite, but for that last movement, I'd choose Tennstedt without thinking twice.

Oh wow  ;D Thanks for letting me know. I have yet to hear the finale being stretched beyond 26 minutes (Bernstein, DG)...and I thought Bernstein wasn't broad, grandiose, Celibidachean enough... 0:)
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: MishaK on June 21, 2009, 07:13:49 PM
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=20ytKytiaYw

 :)
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: greg on June 21, 2009, 07:55:15 PM
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=20ytKytiaYw

 :)
I listened to the first few minutes...... the clips for the Mahler movie where also Haitink, I guess....
i get the impression that his Mahler is lifeless, so I ended up deciding not to check out his symphony cycle.
I'm working on getting Bertini's...... have no idea what to expect there, all i hear is "classical approach" as a description... doesn't sound too promising, but why not, huh?
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: Renfield on June 21, 2009, 08:19:31 PM
Haitink's Mahler isn't lifeless: at worst, it's clinical. But very deliberately so, it's no auto-pilot.

That having been said, I haven't heard a 1st, 2nd, 4th, 5th, 7th, 8th and 9th from him, so I am far from the most authoritative source. ;)
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: jlaurson on June 22, 2009, 03:56:40 AM
A new Mahler Cycle in planning:

Quote
Markus Stenz and the Gürzenich-Orchestra are recording a Mahler cycle on SACD on the label OehmsClassics. This will include the song cycle “Des Knaben Wunderhorn“ with Christiane Oelze (soprano) and Michael Volle (baritone). The first release of this cycle will be Mahler's Symphony No. 5 in August 2009. The other symphonies will be released individually until the completion of the cycle in 2012.
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: DavidRoss on June 22, 2009, 04:05:39 AM
The final issue in the MTT/SFS Mahler cycle will be released in August, bundling the adagio from the 10th together with the 8th:

Erin Wall, soprano
Elza van den Heever, soprano
Laura Claycomb, soprano
Katarina Karnéus, mezzo-soprano
Yvonne Naef, mezzo-soprano
Anthony Dean Griffey, tenor
Quinn Kelsey, baritone
James Morris, bass-baritone
 
San Francisco Symphony Chorus Ragnar Bohlin, director
Pacific Boychoir Kevin Fox, director
San Francisco Girls Chorus Susan McMane, director
Recorded live at Davies Symphony Hall, San Francisco
Symphony No. 8 November 19-23, 2008
Adagio from Symphony No. 10 April 6-8, 2006
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: greg on June 22, 2009, 04:13:05 AM
A new Mahler Cycle in planning:

Nice! I like to hear it whenever a new cycle comes out. Never heard of this conductor, though...


Haitink's Mahler isn't lifeless: at worst, it's clinical. But very deliberately so, it's no auto-pilot.

That having been said, I haven't heard a 1st, 2nd, 4th, 5th, 7th, 8th and 9th from him, so I am far from the most authoritative source. ;)
Well, I'll give him one thing- in the clips I've heard, you can hear everything. I hear all the instruments, but no emotion.
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: Renfield on June 22, 2009, 04:17:38 AM
A new Mahler Cycle in planning:


YES! :D

I literally said 'YES' out loud, just now. I've heard orchestra and conductor in combination live on the 6th, and what a concert that was!
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: greg on June 22, 2009, 04:25:47 AM
YES! :D

I literally said 'YES' out loud, just now. I've heard orchestra and conductor in combination live on the 6th, and what a concert that was!
If you're that enthusiastic about it, I think I will be, too!  :D
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: MishaK on June 22, 2009, 06:45:50 AM
I listened to the first few minutes...... the clips for the Mahler movie where also Haitink, I guess....
i get the impression that his Mahler is lifeless, so I ended up deciding not to check out his symphony cycle.

Your impression is mistaken. This is an approach to Mahler that requires a little more patience. Don't except it to grab you by the throat like Solti. Haitink's Mahler buids very gradually but becomes ever more inevitable and gut wrenching as it nears its climax.
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: greg on June 22, 2009, 12:16:08 PM
Well, I'll give him a shot eventually to see what you're talking about.
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: jlaurson on June 22, 2009, 12:33:48 PM
Well, I'll give him a shot eventually to see what you're talking about.

If and when you do: Stay away from his 8th (turned me off Haitink's Mahler--unjustly, except in this case--for YEARS), indulge in his latest Fourth (http://www.weta.org/fmblog/?p=449)!
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: greg on June 22, 2009, 12:38:44 PM
Oh, I will. Nice blog, btw.
Title: Re: Mahler Mania, Rebooted
Post by: imperfection on June 22, 2009, 10:00:21 PM
I listened to the first few minutes...... the clips for the Mahler movie where also Haitink, I guess....
i get the impression that his Mahler is lifeless, so I ended up deciding not to check out his symphony cycle.
I'm working on getting Bertini's...... have no idea what to expect there, all i hear is "classical approach" as a description... doesn't sound too promising, but why not, huh?

"Lifeless" is definitely not an adjective I would ever imagine of applying to Haitink's Mahler, at least to the BPO performances of the 1st, 2nd, 3rd and 7th I have watched on these excellent sounding DVDs they made:

(http://classicalcdreview.com/DVDVIDEO292.jpg) (http://www.iclassics.com/images/local/300/64657E.jpg)

(http://w