Aug
03
2009
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Kent Nagano on Gustav Mahler

“Mahler was a pioneer ”“ not only a radical”

Do you remember the first time you heard Mahler’s music?

Nagano: The first time I heard Gustav Mahler’s music was indirectly through the television. I was a very young boy, it was in the early 1960s, and I heard the second movement of the 1st Symphony explained, and then conducted, by Leonard Bernstein and the New York Philharmonic. It was on what has now become a very famous television series called The Young People’s Concerts, and for many children like me, who lived in rural America, far away from the big cities, where we didn’t have regular access to symphony orchestras and opera houses, it was a tremendous outreach programme. I must have been eight years old at the time.

[...]

Find the full interview in Gustav Mahler: The Conductors Interviews
Edited by Wolfgang Schaufler
ISBN: 978-3-7024-7162-0
ISMN: 979-0-008-08493-5
Order number: UE26311 (German Edition: UE26310)

Jul
28
2009
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Wolfgang Fink on the Gustav Mahler Conducting Competition

Wolfgang Fink, General Manager of the Bamberg Symphony Orchestra.

Read more about the Bamberg Symphony Orchestra’s
International Gustav Mahler Conducting Competition.

Jul
15
2009
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Michael Tilson Thomas on Gustav Mahler

“Jump! Cut! Bang!”

Do you remember the first time you heard Mahler’s music?

Tilson Thomas: I remember very clearly the moment when Mahler’s music reached out and grabbed me; I was 13 years old. I was waiting at the house of my parents’ friends for some reason or another; they were very busy people and they said, “Would you like to listen to some music? For example, do you know Mahler’s Das Lied von der Erde?” ”“ which of course I didn’t.

And they said, “Why don’t you listen to the last movement ”“ it’s about 20 minutes long and your parents should be here by then.” And they put on this section, and really I divide my life between before I heard that recording ”“ which was Ferrier and Walter ”“ and after I heard it. The music made a stunning impression on me.

[...]

Find the full interview in Gustav Mahler: The Conductors Interviews
Edited by Wolfgang Schaufler
ISBN: 978-3-7024-7162-0
ISMN: 979-0-008-08493-5
Order number: UE26311 (German Edition: UE26310)

Jul
10
2009
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Christoph Eschenbach on Gustav Mahler

“Mahler is certainly the greatest symphonist ever”

Do you remember the first time you heard Mahler’s music?

Eschenbach: Mahler wasn’t very popular in Germany during my childhood, for obvious reasons; he was banned during the Hitler years. Only slowly did Mahler symphonies return to concert programmes. I was living in the country, in Schleswig-Holstein, so I didn’t have many opportunities to go to concerts anyway, but I remember listening to Mahler records. There was a very famous actor at the time, Gustaf Gründgens, whom I knew, and he introduced me in 1961 to the 2nd Symphony. It’s very interesting that it was him.

[...]

Find the full interview in Gustav Mahler: The Conductors Interviews
Edited by Wolfgang Schaufler
ISBN: 978-3-7024-7162-0
ISMN: 979-0-008-08493-5
Order number: UE26311 (German Edition: UE26310)

Jun
23
2009
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Pierre Boulez on Gustav Mahler

“One cannot refer to the biography to explain the music”

Do you remember the first time you heard Mahler’s music?

Boulez: I think so. In France he was not performed at all when I was young. But it was the 4th Symphony, and I remember being surprised by the Schellen [sleigh bells] because it was very unusual to hear such a sound, especially at the beginning of a symphony. Paul Kletzki was conducting.

And then the other time I heard Mahler, that was Das Lied von der Erde [The Song of the Earth], performed in 1952. I don’t know if that was for the first time in France, but it was the first time I saw it programmed there. Although I don’t remember the performers, it was very impressive.

[...]

Find the full interview in Gustav Mahler: The Conductors Interviews
Edited by Wolfgang Schaufler
ISBN: 978-3-7024-7162-0
ISMN: 979-0-008-08493-5
Order number: UE26311 (German Edition: UE26310)

Jun
23
2009
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Jonathan Nott on Gustav Mahler

“Frozen for eternity in death”

Do you remember the first time you heard Mahler’s music?

Nott: Yes. I actually came across Mahler when I was eight years old, singing in the boys choir in Worcester Cathedral; it was Mahler’s 8th.

Was Mahler part of the repertoire when you discovered his symphonies in the UK?

Nott: I wouldn’t say I discovered them ”“ apart from the 8th ”“ I just had much more experience of the 8th than anything else. I wasn’t really a concert-goer.

I grew up in the Midlands, in Worcester; there were concerts, but it wasn’t like being in Vienna or even London. There were very few opportunities to experience a Mahler symphony, therefore I think my first encounters were in mainland Europe ”“ Frankfurt, where I ended up in the late 80s.

[...]

Find the full interview in Gustav Mahler: The Conductors Interviews
Edited by Wolfgang Schaufler
ISBN: 978-3-7024-7162-0
ISMN: 979-0-008-08493-5
Order number: UE26311 (German Edition: UE26310)

Jun
15
2009
--

Franz Welser-Möst on Gustav Mahler

“Mahler was like an earthquake for me.”

Do you remember the first time you heard Mahler’s music?

Welser-Möst: Yes, I do. It was the 1st Symphony; I must have been 10 or 11 years old. It was the student orchestra of the Wiener Musikhochschule [Vienna Academy of Music], at that time with Karl Österreicher. So that was quite some time ago.

At that age, everything was sort of new and I was not immediately drawn to Mahler in particular. The next experience with Mahler that I remember was the 5th with Sir Georg Solti and that was like an earthquake for me. That I remember very well. I think I was about 15. And from that moment on I took a real interest in Mahler’s music.

[...]

Find the full interview in Gustav Mahler: The Conductors Interviews
Edited by Wolfgang Schaufler
ISBN: 978-3-7024-7162-0
ISMN: 979-0-008-08493-5
Order number: UE26311 (German Edition: UE26310)

Jun
15
2009
--

Daniele Gatti on Gustav Mahler

“Mahler should be performed simply and humbly”

Do you remember the first time you heard Mahler’s music?

Gatti: I was nine or ten when I began to study music. And of course the names familiar to me were Beethoven, Mozart, Chopin, Rossini, Verdi ”“ but not Mahler, not at all. Once I heard my father say: “Mahler, Mahler ”“ there is a symphony of Mahler on the radio”, but I was unimpressed. Later on, when I was growing up ”“ I was 12 or 13 ”“ almost every evening he would bring home a new record. They covered the entire repertoire ”“ from Mozart to Stravinsky ”“ and that was how he tried to introduce me to the orchestral sound. I remember he brought Mahler’s 1st, conducted by Bruno Walter, so the first time I listened to his music was with my father in our sitting room ”“ at least 20 minutes of the 1st Symphony. And there I was, listening, without any particular emotion ”“ but subconsciously I was absorbing his style.

[...]

Find the full interview in Gustav Mahler: The Conductors Interviews
Edited by Wolfgang Schaufler
ISBN: 978-3-7024-7162-0
ISMN: 979-0-008-08493-5
Order number: UE26311 (German Edition: UE26310)

Jun
11
2009
2

Daniel Barenboim on Gustav Mahler

“I began to conduct Mahler out of spite”

Do you remember the first time you heard Mahler’s music?

Barenboim: Not exactly. I remember playing the songs with Dietrich Fischer-Dieskau in the early 70s, when we did the Wunderhorn-Lieder, Lieder eines fahrenden Gesellen [Songs of a Wayfarer] and the Rückert-Lieder: all except the Kindertotenlieder [Songs on the Death of Children] because they were not originally written for piano. The first Mahler symphony I conducted was the 5th, in 1973. I came quite late to Mahler.

[...]

Find the full interview in Gustav Mahler: The Conductors Interviews
Edited by Wolfgang Schaufler
ISBN: 978-3-7024-7162-0
ISMN: 979-0-008-08493-5
Order number: UE26311 (German Edition: UE26310)

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