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Mahler Symphonies Favorite Recordings - Page 66

post #976 of 3714
Quote:
Originally Posted by Doc Sarvis
OK, Here's my theory. In M3, 4th movement (which quotes from Nietzsche's Also Sprach Zarathustra), starting with the words "Die Welt" and recurring several times in the orchestra during the movement, we have a two note descending motive (sounds like F# to F natural). I don't have the score, but I have pretty good pitch.

Now, listen to the famous Dawn theme (the beginning) of Strauss' Also Sprach Zarathustra: You know - duhhhh, duhhhh, duhhhhhhh - DAA DAAAA! That last DAA DAAAA is the same interval, and the same effect!

Now the clincher: The words DIE WELT mean, of course, THE WORLD. And the Strauss motive is associated with (althought not precisely the same as) what is known as the World Riddle motive!

I'd be totally 100% convinced except that it's in a different key, and the Strauss notes sound like E-D# to me.

This might be old news, but I've never heard it before. If it is new, Mark, you should use it in your MTT M3 review!
The dates for the composition of both pieces is actually very close, 1895-96 for Strauss, and 1893-6 for Mahler. Maybe, just maybe, Strauss borrowed it from Mahler. They were acquainted with each other, and you never know. Then again, they might both have culled it from another source!
post #977 of 3714
Quote:
Originally Posted by Bunnyears
The M5 Adagietto seems to have been used more than anything else -- that Adagietto has really taken on a life of its own. It's probably the only theme from Mahler that most people would recognize, even if they couldn't identify the composer.

I was lucky in that I bought my first version of Mahler 5 (Sinopoli, yay) way before I had ever heard the Adagietto (though, to be honest, I may have heard it, but I didn't remember if I did)..

but again, I can't remember that many instances of hearing Mahler's music in tv or film. The places I hear Mahler the most are in background music to documentaries that I see on PBS or some History Channel thing. Most movies these days don't just use bits of classical music, though I think it's very cool when they do: Cases in point.. Barber's Adagio used in PLATOON. Or Ride of the Valkyries used in APOCALYPSE NOW. I know there are others but I must get back to work..

-jar
post #978 of 3714
Quote:
Originally Posted by Bunnyears

The M5 Adagietto seems to have been used more than anything else -- that Adagietto has really taken on a life of its own. It's probably the only theme from Mahler that most people would recognize, even if they couldn't identify the composer.
My favorite unexpected Mahler in a movie moment: In the glam rock film "Velvet Goldmine" when the main character Brian Slade suddenly spies his future wife in a crowded dance club. The rock music fades away and the slow movement of Mahler's Sixth starts up. Nice touch!
post #979 of 3714
Quote:
Originally Posted by Bunnyears
There are two movies, Morte a Venezia (based on the Thomas Mann novella)
Take it for what it's worth, but I read one of Sir Dirk Bogarde's memoirs, and he said that Visconti told him that the reason he played up the Mahler connection in "Death in Venice" was because Visconti knew Thomas Mann, and Mann allegedly told Visconti that the story was more based in reality than anyone knew. Mann supposedly met Mahler on a train coming back from Venice (no year given) and that, like the character in the story, Mahler had become infatuated with a youth and had worn makeup to try to look younger, etc. Mann waited until Mahler's death to publish the story, just in case anyone did make the connection. I have no idea if there is any other source to verify this anecdote, but it's yet another interesting wrinkle that might fit into the complexities of Mahler.
post #980 of 3714
Quote:
Originally Posted by Doc Sarvis
This might be old news, but I've never heard it before. If it is new, Mark, you should use it in your MTT M3 review!
Doc, I don't know if anyone else has pointed that out before or not, but it certainly makes sense that M would echo Strauss that way. If I ever have time to throw in a review of the MTT M3, I'll have to include that. But I still have to get started on the MTT M9! (But I'll go see if there's any new comments to post, first. I'm a horrible procrastinator.)
post #981 of 3714
Just saw news report that Reiner's Mahler 4th will be put out on SACD in RCA's third batch of 'Living Stereo' releases on July 26.

M
post #982 of 3714
Quote:
Originally Posted by Mark from HFR
Just saw news report that Reiner's Mahler 4th will be put out on SACD in RCA's third batch of 'Living Stereo' releases on July 26.

M
Interesting, I've never heard any Mahler by Reiner. Will be hard to surplant the Szell on the 4th
post #983 of 3714
Quote:
Originally Posted by Mark from HFR
Take it for what it's worth, but I read one of Sir Dirk Bogarde's memoirs, and he said that Visconti told him that the reason he played up the Mahler connection in "Death in Venice" was because Visconti knew Thomas Mann, and Mann allegedly told Visconti that the story was more based in reality than anyone knew. Mann supposedly met Mahler on a train coming back from Venice (no year given) and that, like the character in the story, Mahler had become infatuated with a youth and had worn makeup to try to look younger, etc. Mann waited until Mahler's death to publish the story, just in case anyone did make the connection. I have no idea if there is any other source to verify this anecdote, but it's yet another interesting wrinkle that might fit into the complexities of Mahler.
This is pure speculation on my part:
It has been suggested for decades that the character Gustav in Death in Venice was based on Mahler. I just find that the idea of Mahler being a bisexual a bit "beside the point," but he married very late in life which would have been cause for gossip in the turn of the century milieu of Vienna. I don't doubt that Mann and Mahler traveled in the same circles even if they did not live in the same country. And considering that Mann himself had admitted to bisexual feelings that he never acted upon, it is possible that the character of Gustav is a synthesis of more than one person. Then there is the question of whether Visconti would have been the only person that Thomas Mann told the story to, and it seems likely that if the story were true, others would have heard of it as well.

Writers are notorious for taking things from one person and another person and building a character that can be mistaken for either or neither of the people that inspire the portrayal. In the end, does it really affect how we enjoy the music of Mahler or the literature of Mann? I think both the music and literature stand firmly on their own merits, apart from any of the human foibles of their creators.
post #984 of 3714
Quote:
Originally Posted by Mark from HFR
Just saw news report that Reiner's Mahler 4th will be put out on SACD in RCA's third batch of 'Living Stereo' releases on July 26.

M
I have the Reiner Mr4 on XRCD. I got it because it features Lisa della Casa, and she really delivers!

post #985 of 3714
Quote:
Originally Posted by Bunnyears
This is pure speculation on my part:
It has been suggested for decades that the character Gustav in Death in Venice was based on Mahler. I just find that the idea of Mahler being a bisexual a bit "beside the point," but he married very late in life which would have been cause for gossip in the turn of the century milieu of Vienna. I don't doubt that Mann and Mahler traveled in the same circles even if they did not live in the same country. And considering that Mann himself had admitted to bisexual feelings that he never acted upon, it is possible that the character of Gustav is a synthesis of more than one person. Then there is the question of whether Visconti would have been the only person that Thomas Mann told the story to, and it seems likely that if the story were true, others would have heard of it as well.

Writers are notorious for taking things from one person and another person and building a character that can be mistaken for either or neither of the people that inspire the portrayal. In the end, does it really affect how we enjoy the music of Mahler or the literature of Mann? I think both the music and literature stand firmly on their own merits, apart from any of the human foibles of their creators.
Very well put. Mahler's sexuality is a non-issue when discussing his music. If one is doing a biography of him, it is another story. In my readings on Mahler, his sex life isn't touched at all, and rightfully so. I would say, except for a very few exceptions, the personal facts of creators have very little to do with their art. Mahler may have been a bisexual, I don't know, I didn't have the honor of knowing the man. However, I'd like some more proof than a Mann novel before I jump on the wagon.
post #986 of 3714
Quote:
Originally Posted by PSmith08
Very well put. Mahler's sexuality is a non-issue when discussing his music. If one is doing a biography of him, it is another story. In my readings on Mahler, his sex life isn't touched at all, and rightfully so. I would say, except for a very few exceptions, the personal facts of creators have very little to do with their art. Mahler may have been a bisexual, I don't know, I didn't have the honor of knowing the man. However, I'd like some more proof than a Mann novel before I jump on the wagon.
The only biography I've read that mentions Mahler's sexuality is one by Egon Gartenberg and he makes no mention of bisexuality. Quite the opposite Mahler had affairs with various singers he worked with, all female. I'll have to have a look at my two volumes of Henry Louis de la Grange. But it doesn't really matter does it?
post #987 of 3714
Now, to get back to the important things...

I have the Szell M4 on order, so I haven't heard it yet. The Reiner M4, however is extremely satisfying, and the singing really elevates it. There is this problem with all of Mahler's works: no matter how great the interpretation I'm never satisfied. I guess that there is always the hint within the work that there is something new that can be uncovered, so I need more and more and more. I also have the James Levine 4th because I feel that it is one of the works that benefits from a conductor who knows how to direct voices. Szell as a specialist in Beethoven and Mozart would also be a natural for the 4th, so I am really looking forward to getting that one into the stack.
post #988 of 3714
I have the Reiner M4 on an audiophile vinyl pressing; it's fantastic. I'm likely to pick up the SACD as well (they are very reasonably priced). I have many of the others in the Living Stereo SACD reissue series, and they really sound great. Most of these master tapes were recorded in three-channel (left, center, right), and this is the first time that the three-channel mixes have been released.

Too bad there are only a few Mahler works that RCA Living Steeo recorded during their "golden age" before the sound and pressing quality diminished: This M4 with Reiner, Das Lied with Reiner again (which I just found on vinyl), and M1 with Leinsdorf are three of them. The Mahler boom was just getting going back then, and it's interesting to read the liner notes, which often contain some of the vestiges of anti-Mahler bias.
post #989 of 3714
Quote:
Originally Posted by Tyson
Just curious, but what is everyone's favorite symphony out of the 9? I'm a bit of an oddball in that the 7th is actually my favorite. Just something about that fun-house, off kilter, slightly crazy world view in it that appeals to me.
Hey Tyson - I remembered this post today while I was listening to M7 on my IPod. It occurred to me that you might prefer the 7th because, of all the Mahler cycle, it strikes me as the one that sounds the most like Shostakovich (and I remmbered that you are a big Shosty fan). Anyway, I can never say what is my favorite Mahler (they are all so damned wonderful!) but I agree that the 7th is special (and underrated compared to the others).
post #990 of 3714
As long as we are sort of digressing: What is everyone's favorite Mahler biography?
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