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)

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