Performer’s Perspective- Mahler 3, a scherzo on a poem

Hi readers- Peter Davison and I have continued to chat about the meaning of the Rott references in Mahler 3, which were further spurred along my the question of sin raised in my Mahler 4 post. He’s made some more very interesting discoveries, especially about the Scherzo. Rather than burry this in a comment, I […]

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Performer’s Perspective- Mahler 3, a lost friend

The Bridgewater Hall- Mahler in Manchester Shortly after I posted my most recent Mahler essay, I had a comment from Mahlerian and sometime Vftp contributor, Mitch Friedfeld, who suggested I might have overlooked something- There’s another instance of a Mahler-Brahms shout-out — I like that lingo, Ken! — but one with which Mahler was perhaps […]

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Performer’s Perspective- Mahler 3, a shout-out

  On its most basic level, what most musicians, musicologists and listeners call “interpretation” is, when done right, basically a 3 step process. 1-       Observation. What is there in the score? 2-       Examination. Why is it there? 3-       Application. What do we do with knowledge we’ve gained in the first two steps? What do you […]

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Performer’s Perspective- Das Lied von der Erde, a rebirth

    It’s probably no coincidence that the two most popular composers of the 20th Century, Shostakovich and Mahler, are also the two whose autobiographies are most intimately associated with their work. However, although their musical work may have been shaped in part by the circumstances of their lives, it is also important to remember […]

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Performer’s Perspective- Mahler 2, a moment

The Bridgewater Hall- Mahler in Manchester   My wife and I call Mahler 2 “the Mahler symphony of “this is the best moment in the piece” moments.” From the bracing opening to the shattering climax of the first movement, from the infinitely elegant pizzicato return of the theme of the 2nd movement to the bizarre […]

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Conductor Conversations- Gianandrea Noseda on Mahler

The Bridgewater Hall- Mahler in Manchester Our first “conductor conversation” for Mahler in Manchester took place on Friday at Studio 7 in Manchester. I met Gianandrea after his final rehearsal of Kurt Schwertsik’s Nachtmusiken- the orchestra was on great form, and the new piece is very good. He’s been called “the conductor who could save […]

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Performer’s Perspective- Mahler 1, a riddle

The Bridgewater Hall- Mahler in Manchester Mahler in Manchester begins this weekend, as Gianandrea Noseda leads the BBC Philharmonic in Mahler’s 1st Symphony. The performance takes place at 7:30 PM on the 16th of January, 2010 in The Bridgewater Hall I promised, or at least hinted at, a riddle in Mahler 1 to be discussed, and […]

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Performer’s Perspective- Mahler 1, a challenge

The Bridgewater Hall- Mahler in Manchester Mahler in Manchester begins this weekend, as Gianandrea Noseda leads the BBC Philharmonic in Mahler’s 1st Symphony. The performance takes place at 7:30 PM on the 16th of January, 2010 in The Bridgewater Hall Even today, the First probably remains Mahler’s most popular piece- a generation ago, it was […]

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Performer’s Perspective- Is Mahler’s music hard(er) to conduct?

“Is Mahler’s music more difficult to conduct than that of other composers?” When I was asked this question just the other day it was by no means for the first time. It is not hard to understand why a listener might suspect that Mahler’s music is harder to conduct than that of most other composers- […]

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Another note, another blog post

As a follow-up to my post on the volume level of the last note of the first movement of Mahler 5, I wanted to come back to the obvious parallel with the last note of the 2nd movement. The note in question is a single eighth-note a-natural on the timpani, marked “solo,” “well-tuned,” accent (>) […]

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