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Mahler: Symphony No. 1 / Vanska, Minnesota Orchestra


Release Date: 08/02/2019 
Label:  Bis   Catalog #: BIS-2346  
Composer:  Gustav Mahler
Conductor:  Osmo Vänskä
Orchestra/Ensemble:  Minnesota Orchestra
Number of Discs: 1 
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Notes and Editorial Reviews

The shimmering string harmonics at the opening of Gustav Mahler’s First Symphony bring to mind the suspended breath of spring, and will have signaled even to the very first audiences that a new symphonic era was being ushered in. Soon enough the composer introduces some of the elements that would become key components of his musical language: sounds of nature (here cuckoo calls) are combined with quasi-militaristic fanfares and ‘high-art’ chromatic wanderings in cellos, as if to illustrate Mahler’s view of the symphony as an all-embracing art form. The symphony, which the composer originally gave the subtitle ‘Titan’, borrows extensively from the song cycle Lieder eines fahrenden Gesellen. But Mahler also incorporates elements of Moravian Read more popular music (in the second movement) and – in the slow third movement – famously quotes a minor-mode version of the children’s rhyme Bruder Martin (also known as Frere Jacques). The finale transports the listener to a world of Gothic theatricality reminiscent of Grand Opera, before arriving – after a number of false starts – at the symphony’s heroic chorale-like ending. This symphonic ‘world-in-microcosm’ is here brought to life by the Minnesota Orchestra and Osmo Vanska on the fourth installment in a series which has earned the team the description ‘among the finest exponents of Mahler’s music’ on the website allmusic.com. Read less

Works on This Recording

1.
Symphony no 1 in D major "Titan" by Gustav Mahler
Conductor:  Osmo Vänskä
Orchestra/Ensemble:  Minnesota Orchestra
Period: Romantic 
Written: 1888/1896 

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