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
James Levine Conducts Mahler: Symphonies No 1, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 9 & 10
Release Date: 03/25/2014   Label: Rca  
Catalog: 7686092   Number of Discs: 10
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Mahler: Des Knaben Wunderhorn / Thomas Hampson
Release Date: 12/21/2010   Label: Deutsche Grammophon  
Catalog: 001508502   Number of Discs: 1
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Mahler: Symphony No 1 / Simonov, Royal Philharmonic Orchestra
Release Date: 03/09/2010   Label: Royal Philharmonic Masterworks  
Catalog: 28630   Number of Discs: 1
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Mahler: Symphony No 5 / Shipway, Royal Philharmonic Orchestra
Release Date: 08/09/2011   Label: Royal Philharmonic Masterworks  
Catalog: 28750   Number of Discs: 1
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Mahler: Lieder / Bernarda Fink
Release Date: 05/13/2014   Label: Harmonia Mundi  
Catalog: 902173   Number of Discs: 1
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Work: Kindertotenlieder

Browse 76-92 of 92 Available Recordings
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  • 76.
    Bernstein Century - Mahler: Symphony No 8, Kindertotenlieder
    Label: Sony   Catalog: 61837 Release Date: 09/14/1999   Number of Discs: 2
    Composer:  Gustav Mahler
    Performer:  Dame Janet Baker,  John Mitchinson,  Vladimir Ruzdjak,  Donald McIntyre  ... 
    Conductor:  Leonard Bernstein
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Israel Philharmonic Orchestra,  London Symphony Orchestra,  Finchley Children's Music Group  ... 
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  • 77.
    Mahler: Lieder Eines Fahrenden Gesellen, Etc /Komatsu, Et Al
    Label: Naxos   Catalog: 8554164 Release Date: 08/31/1999   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Gustav Mahler
    Performer:  Hidenori Komatsu
    Conductor:  Cord Garben
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Hannover Radio Philharmonic Orchestra
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  • 78.
    Mahler: Kindertotenlieder, Ruckertlieder / Janet Baker
    Label: Emi Great Recordings Of The Century   Catalog: 66996 Release Date: 05/04/1999   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Gustav Mahler
    Performer:  Dame Janet Baker
    Conductor:  Sir John Barbirolli
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Hallé Orchestra,  New Philharmonia Orchestra
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  • 79.
    Mahler: Kindertotenlieder; Purcell / Kathleen Ferrier, Bruno Walter
    Label: Emi Great Recordings Of The Century   Catalog: 66963 Release Date: 03/09/1999   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Christoph W. Gluck,  Maurice Greene,  George Frideric Handel,  Felix Mendelssohn  ... 
    Performer:  Kathleen Ferrier,  Gerald Moore,  Isobel Baillie
    Conductor:  Charles Bruck,  Bruno Walter
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Netherlands Opera Orchestra,  Netherlands Opera Chorus,  Vienna Philharmonic Orchestra
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  • 80.
    Mahler: Ruckert Lieder, Kindertotenlieder / Meier, Maazel
    Label: Rca Victor Red Seal   Catalog: 57129 Release Date: 02/09/1999   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Gustav Mahler
    Performer:  Waltraud Meier
    Conductor:  Lorin Maazel
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Bavarian Radio Symphony Orchestra
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  • 81.
    Mahler: Complete Symphonies & Orchestral Songs / Bernstein
    Label: Deutsche Grammophon   Catalog: 459080 Release Date: 11/10/1998   Number of Discs: 16
    Composer:  Gustav Mahler
    Performer:  James King,  Dietrich Fischer-Dieskau,  Trudeliese Schmidt,  Gerti Zeumer  ... 
    Conductor:  Leonard Bernstein
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Vienna Philharmonic Orchestra,  Royal Concertgebouw Orchestra,  Vienna Boys' Choir  ... 
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  • 82.
    Mahler: Symphony no 6, Lieder / Karajan, Ludwig, Berlin PO
    Label: Dg The Originals   Catalog: 457716 Release Date: 05/12/1998   Number of Discs: 2
    Composer:  Gustav Mahler
    Performer:  Christa Ludwig
    Conductor:  Herbert von Karajan
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Berlin Philharmonic Orchestra
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  • 83.
    Mahler: Symphony No 3, Kindertotenlieder / Maazel, Baltsa
    Label: Cbs Masterworks   Catalog: 42403 Release Date: 02/27/1998   Number of Discs: 2
    Composer:  Gustav Mahler
    Performer:  Agnes Baltsa
    Conductor:  Lorin Maazel
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Vienna Philharmonic Chorus,  Vienna Philharmonic Orchestra
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  • 84.
    Nono: Il Canto Sospeso;  Mahler: Kindertotenlieder / Abbado
    Label: Sony   Catalog: 53360 Release Date: 02/27/1998   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Luigi Nono,  Gustav Mahler
    Performer:  Barbara Bonney,  Marek Torjewski,  Susanne Otto,  Bruno Ganz  ... 
    Conductor:  Claudio Abbado
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Berlin Philharmonic Orchestra
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  • 85.
    Mahler: Symphony No 9, Lieder / Karajan, Ludwig, Berlin Po
    Label: Dg Double   Catalog: 453040 Release Date: 04/15/1997   Number of Discs: 2
    Composer:  Gustav Mahler
    Performer:  Christa Ludwig
    Conductor:  Herbert von Karajan
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Berlin Philharmonic Orchestra
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  • 86.
    Mahler: Orchestral Songs / Haitink, Norman, Baker, King
    Label: Philips Duo   Catalog: 454014 Release Date: 04/09/1996   Number of Discs: 2
    Composer:  Gustav Mahler
    Performer:  Jessye Norman,  John Shirley-Quirk,  Hermann Prey,  James King  ... 
    Conductor:  Bernard Haitink
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Royal Concertgebouw Orchestra
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  • 87.
    Horenstein Conducts Mahler - Symphony No 9, Etc
    Label: Vox Box Legends   Catalog: 5509 Release Date: 04/16/1995   Number of Discs: 2
    Composer:  Gustav Mahler
    Performer:  Norman Foster
    Conductor:  Jascha Horenstein
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Vienna Symphony Orchestra,  Bamberg Symphony Orchestra
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  • 88.
    The Royal Edition - Mahler: Symphony No 3, Etc / Bernstein
    Label: Sony   Catalog: 47576 Release Date: 11/17/1992   Number of Discs: 2
    Composer:  Gustav Mahler
    Performer:  Jennie Tourel,  Martha Lipton
    Conductor:  Leonard Bernstein
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  New York Philharmonic,  Schola Cantorum New York members,  Transfiguration Boys Choir
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  • 89.
    Mahler: Kindertotenlieder; Brahms: Liebeslieder Walzer / Ferrier
    Label: London/Decca Historic Series   Catalog: 425995 Release Date: 01/01/1992   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Johannes Brahms,  Gustav Mahler
    Performer:  Kathleen Ferrier
    Conductor:  Otto Klemperer
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Royal Concertgebouw Orchestra
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  • 90.
    Mahler: Songs Of A Wayfarer, Etc / Hampson, Bernstein
    Label: Deutsche Grammophon   Catalog: 431682 Release Date: 09/12/1991   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Gustav Mahler
    Performer:  Thomas Hampson
    Conductor:  Leonard Bernstein
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Vienna Philharmonic Orchestra
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  • 91.
    Mahler: Symphony No 7, Kindertotenlieder / Norman, Ozawa
    Label: Philips   Catalog: 426249 Release Date: 02/08/1991   Number of Discs: 2
    Composer:  Gustav Mahler
    Performer:  Jessye Norman
    Conductor:  Seiji Ozawa
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Boston Symphony Orchestra
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  • 92.
    Mahler: Symphonie No 6, Kindertotenlieder / Bernstein
    Label: Deutsche Grammophon   Catalog: 427697 Release Date: 02/13/1990   Number of Discs: 2
    Composer:  Gustav Mahler
    Performer:  Thomas Hampson
    Conductor:  Leonard Bernstein
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Vienna Philharmonic Orchestra
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