Gustav Mahler

Biography

Born: July 7, 1860; Czech Republic   Died: May 18, 1911; Austria   Period: Romantic
"Imagine the universe beginning to sing and resound," Mahler wrote of his Symphony No. 8, the "Symphony of a Thousand." "It is no longer human voices; it is planets and suns revolving." Mahler was late Romantic music's ultimate big thinker. In his own lifetime he was generally regarded as a conductor who composed on the side, producing huge, bizarre symphonies accepted only by a cult following.

Born in 1860, in Kalischt, Bohemia, he came Read more from a middle-class family. He entered the Vienna Conservatory in 1875, studying piano, harmony, and composition in a musically conservative atmosphere. Nevertheless, he became a supporter of Wagner and Bruckner, both of whose works he would later conduct frequently, and became part of a social circle interested in socialism, Nietzschean philosophy, and pan-Germanism. Around 1880, he began conducting and wrote his first mature work, Das klagende Lied. Mahler's conducting career advanced rapidly, moving him from Kassel to Prague to Leipzig to Budapest; he was usually either greatly respected or thoroughly despised by the performers for his exacting rehearsals and perfectionism. In 1897 he became music director of the Vienna Court Opera and then, a year later, of the Vienna Philharmonic. Mahler's conducting career permitted composition only during the summers, in a series of "composing huts" he had built in picturesque rural locations. He completed his first symphony in 1888, but it met with utter audience incomprehension. He reserved this time for symphonies, all of them large-scale works, and song cycles. In Das Lied von der Erde (The Song of the Earth), he merged the two forms into an immense song-symphony. The Viennese public largely failed to understand his music, but Mahler took their reactions calmly, accurately predicting that "My time will yet come." Meanwhile, his autocratic ways as a conductor alienated musicians. In 1901, the press and the musicians essentially forced his resignation from the Philharmonic. He married a young composition student, Alma Schindler in 1902, and they soon had two daughters. By 1907 Mahler was increasingly away from Vienna, conducting his own works, and thus he resigned from the opera as well. Just after accepting the position of principal conductor of New York's Metropolitan Opera, but before leaving Vienna, Mahler's older daughter, age 4, died from scarlet fever and diphtheria, and he learned he himself had a defective heart valve. In New York, he was impressed by the caliber of talent and quickly gained audience approval. In 1909 he became conductor of the New York Philharmonic, which he found much more agreeable than the opera work by this time. The following year, he had a triumphant premiere of his massive Symphony No. 8 in Munich. Despite the professional successes, his personal life suffered another blow when his and Alma's marriage began having problems. They stayed together, and after he became ill in February 1911, she saw to it that he made it back to Vienna, where he died on May 18.

The conductors Bruno Walter, Otto Klemperer, Willem Mengelberg, and Maurice Abravanel kept Mahler's legacy alive, and Mahler's are now among the most recorded of any symphonies. His frequent incorporation of vocal elements into symphonic writing brought to full fruition a process that had begun with Beethoven's Symphony No. 9, demonstrating his music's firm roots in the Germanic classical tradition. However, it was his huge tapestries of shifting moods and tones, ranging from tragedy to bitter irony (often explicitly indicated in performance directions), from café music to evocations of the sublime, that portended a century in which multiplicity ruled. Read less

Mahler: Symphony No 8 / Solti, Chicago [Blu-ray Audio]
Release Date: 02/11/2014   Label: Decca  
Catalog: 001993346   Number of Discs: 1
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Mahler: Symphony No 2 / Jurowski, Stotijn, Kucerova
Release Date: 06/28/2011   Label: Lpo  
Catalog: 54   Number of Discs: 2
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Mahler: Symphony No 1 / Jurowski, London PO
Release Date: 05/28/2013   Label: Lpo  
Catalog: 70   Number of Discs: 2
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Mahler: Symphony No 2 / Mehta, Vienna Philharmonic [Blu-ray Audio]
Release Date: 02/11/2014   Label: Decca  
Catalog: 001993646   Number of Discs: 1
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Mahler: Symphony No 9 / Barshai, Moscow Radio So
Release Date: 12/07/1993   Label: Bis  
Catalog: 632   Number of Discs: 1
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Work: Das Lied von der Erde

Browse 76-100 of 113 Available Recordings
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  • 76.
    Mahler: Symphonies 1-10, Etc / Bertini, Kölner Rundfunk
    Label: Emi Classics   Catalog: 40238 Release Date: 01/10/2006   Number of Discs: 11
    Composer:  Gustav Mahler
    Performer:  Ben Heppner,  Marjana Lipovsek,  Florence Quivar,  Paul Frey  ... 
    Conductor:  Gary Bertini
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Cologne West German Radio Symphony Orchestra,  Little Singers Of Tokyo,  Prague Philharmonic Chorus  ... 
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  • 77.
    Mahler: Symphonies No 9 & 10, Das Lied Von Der Erde / Bernstein
    Label: Deutsche Grammophon   Catalog: 000554609 Release Date: 11/22/2005  
    Composer:  Gustav Mahler
    Performer:  Christa Ludwig,  René Kollo
    Conductor:  Leonard Bernstein
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Vienna Philharmonic Orchestra,  Israel Philharmonic Orchestra
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  • 78.
    Bernstein Collectors Edition - Mahler III: Symphonies 8-10
    Label: Deutsche Grammophon   Catalog: 000532402 Release Date: 11/08/2005   Number of Discs: 5
    Composer:  Gustav Mahler
    Performer:  Margaret Price,  Judith Blegen,  José Van Dam,  Kenneth Riegel  ... 
    Conductor:  Leonard Bernstein
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Vienna Philharmonic Orchestra,  Vienna State Opera Chorus Konzertvereinigung,  Vienna Singverein  ... 
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  • 79.
    Mahler: Das Lied Von Der Erde; Mozart / Giulini, Fassbaender, Vienna
    Label: Orfeo D'or   Catalog: 654052 Release Date: 09/27/2005   Number of Discs: 2
    Composer:  Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart,  Gustav Mahler
    Performer:  Brigitte Fassbaender,  Francisco Araiza
    Conductor:  Carlo Maria Giulini
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Vienna Philharmonic Orchestra
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  • 80.
    Mahler: Das Lied Von Der Erde / Walter, Forrester, Et Al
    Label: Music & Arts Programs Of America   Catalog: 4206 Release Date: 02/22/2005   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Gustav Mahler
    Performer:  Maureen Forrester,  Richard Lewis
    Conductor:  Bruno Walter
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Philharmonic Symphony Orchestra
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  • 81.
    Mahler: (Das) Lied Von Der Erde
    Label: Accord   Catalog: 4761485 Release Date: 01/17/2005  
    Composer:  Gustav Mahler
    Performer:  Donald Litaker,  Iris Vermillion
    Conductor:  Armin Jordan
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Montpellier National Orchestra
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  • 82.
    Mahler: Das Lied Von Der Erde / Walter, Thorborg, Et Al
    Label: Opus Kura   Catalog: 2049 Release Date: 08/31/2004   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Gustav Mahler
    Performer:  Charles Kullman,  Kerstin Thorborg
    Conductor:  Bruno Walter
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Vienna Philharmonic Orchestra
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  • 83.
    Waltraud Meier - I Follow A Voice Within Me
    Label: Euroarts   Catalog: 2051889 Release Date: 02/17/2004   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Gustav Mahler
    Performer:  Waltraud Meier,  Torsten Kerl
    Conductor:  Semyon Bychkov
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  • 84.
    Mahler: Das Lied Von Der Erde / Kempe, Baker, Speiss, Et Al
    Label: Bbc Legends   Catalog: 4129 Release Date: 10/21/2003   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Gustav Mahler
    Performer:  Dame Janet Baker,  Ludovic Speiss
    Conductor:  Rudolf Kempe
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  BBC Symphony Orchestra
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  • 85.
    Brahms: Alto Rhapsody;  Mahler: Das Lied / Kathleen Ferrier
    Label: Apr (Appian)   Catalog: 5579 Release Date: 07/29/2003   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Gustav Mahler,  Johannes Brahms
    Performer:  Kathleen Ferrier,  Richard Lewis
    Conductor:  Sir John Barbirolli,  Erik Tuxen
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Hallé Orchestra,  Oslo Philharmonic Chorus,  Oslo Philharmonic Orchestra
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  • 86.
    Mahler: Das Lied Von Der Erde / Kubelik, Bavarian Radio So
    Label: Audite   Catalog: 95491 Release Date: 09/24/2002   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Gustav Mahler
    Performer:  Waldemar Kmentt,  Dame Janet Baker
    Conductor:  Rafael Kubelik
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Bavarian Radio Symphony Orchestra
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  • 87.
    Mahler - The Complete Recordings / Sinopoli, Philharmonia
    Label: Deutsche Grammophon   Catalog: 471451 Release Date: 05/14/2002   Number of Discs: 15
    Composer:  Gustav Mahler
    Performer:  Bernd Weikl,  Iris Vermillion,  Keith Lewis,  Brigitte Fassbaender  ... 
    Conductor:  Giuseppe Sinopoli
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Philharmonia Orchestra,  Dresden Staatskapelle,  Shinyukai Choir  ... 
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  • 88.
    Mahler: Das Lied Von Der Erde / Walter, Thorborg, Kullman
    Label: Dutton Laboratories/Vocalion   Catalog: 9722 Release Date: 05/14/2002   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Gustav Mahler
    Performer:  Charles Kullman,  Kerstin Thorborg
    Conductor:  Bruno Walter,  Sir Malcolm Sargent
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Vienna Philharmonic Orchestra,  Orchestra
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  • 89.
    Mahler: Symphony No 5, Das Lied Von Der Erde / Tennstedt
    Label: Emi Classics Double Fforte   Catalog: 74849 Release Date: 02/12/2002   Number of Discs: 2
    Composer:  Gustav Mahler
    Performer:  Agnes Baltsa,  Klaus König
    Conductor:  Klaus Tennstedt
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  London Philharmonic Orchestra
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  • 90.
    Mahler: Das Lied von der Erde / Davis, Norman, Vickers
    Label: Philips   Catalog: 411474 Release Date: 10/30/2001   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Gustav Mahler
    Performer:  Jessye Norman,  Jon Vickers
    Conductor:  Sir Colin Davis
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  London Symphony Orchestra
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  • 91.
    Mahler: Das Lied Von Der Erde / Walter, Miller, Haefliger
    Label: Cbs Masterworks   Catalog: 42034 Release Date: 06/19/2001   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Gustav Mahler
    Performer:  Mildred Miller,  Ernst Haefliger
    Conductor:  Bruno Walter
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  New York Philharmonic
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  • 92.
    Mahler: Das Lied von der Erde / Boulez, Urmana, Schade, VPO
    Label: Deutsche Grammophon   Catalog: 469526 Release Date: 03/13/2001   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Gustav Mahler
    Performer:  Violeta Urmana,  Michael Schade
    Conductor:  Pierre Boulez
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Vienna Philharmonic Orchestra
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  • 93.
    Mahler: Das Lied von der Erde / Jochum
    Label: Deutsche Grammophon   Catalog: 463628 Release Date: 01/02/2001   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Gustav Mahler
    Performer:  Nan Merriman,  Ernst Haefliger
    Conductor:  Eugen Jochum
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Royal Concertgebouw Orchestra
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  • 94.
    Mahler: Das Lied Von Der Erde / Ferrier, Walter, Et Al
    Label: London/Decca Legends   Catalog: 466576 Release Date: 11/14/2000   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Gustav Mahler
    Performer:  Kathleen Ferrier,  Julius Patzak
    Conductor:  Bruno Walter
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Vienna Philharmonic Orchestra
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  • 95.
    Mahler: Das Lied Von Der Erde / Jänicke, Elsner, Et Al
    Label: Orfeo D'or   Catalog: 494001 Release Date: 07/25/2000   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Gustav Mahler
    Performer:  Yvi Jänicke,  Christian Elsner
    Conductor:  Dietrich Fischer-Dieskau
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Stuttgart Radio Symphony Orchestra
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  • 96.
    Mahler: Das Lied Von Der Erde / Domingo, Skovhus, Salonen
    Label: Sony   Catalog: 60646 Release Date: 01/18/2000   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Gustav Mahler
    Performer:  Placido Domingo,  Boje Skovhus
    Conductor:  Esa-Pekka Salonen
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Los Angeles Philharmonic Orchestra
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  • 97.
    Mahler: Das Lied Von Der Erde / Sanderling, Schreier, Et Al
    Label: Berlin Classics   Catalog: 9402 Release Date: 09/21/1999   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Gustav Mahler
    Performer:  Birgit Finnilä,  Peter Schreier
    Conductor:  Kurt Sanderling
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Berlin Symphony Orchestra
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  • 98.
    Mahler: Das Lied Von Der Erde / Bernstein, Vienna Po
    Label: London/Decca Legends   Catalog: 466381 Release Date: 09/14/1999   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Gustav Mahler
    Performer:  James King,  Dietrich Fischer-Dieskau
    Conductor:  Leonard Bernstein
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Vienna Philharmonic Orchestra
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  • 99.
    Mahler: Das Lied Von Der Erde / Deyoung, Villars, Oue, Et Al
    Label: Reference Recordings   Catalog: 88 Release Date: 08/17/1999   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Gustav Mahler
    Performer:  Michelle DeYoung,  Jon Villars
    Conductor:  Eiji Oue
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Minnesota Orchestra
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  • 100.
    Mahler: Das Lied von der Erde / Klemperer, Ludwig, Wunderlich
    Label: Emi Great Recordings Of The Century   Catalog: 66944 Release Date: 01/12/1999   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Gustav Mahler
    Performer:  Christa Ludwig,  Fritz Wunderlich
    Conductor:  Otto Klemperer
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Philharmonia Orchestra,  New Philharmonia Orchestra
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