Riccardo Chailly on Gustav Mahler

“Mahler’s First was the great emotion of my youth”

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

Chailly: Yes, very clearly; it was in the early 60s in Rome, at the Auditorium del Foro Italico with the RAI Rome Orchestra. I attended a rehearsal of the 1st Symphony, conducted by Zubin Mehta, who was very young at that time. I was there because my father was working at the RAI Rome, programming classical music. He had to leave for a meeting and said, “Stay here for one hour and don’t move, don’t talk, don’t do anything!” When I heard the power of the music it left me feeling at a complete standstill. I didn’t know what to do, how to react” – it was the great emotion of my youth.


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)


Mahler at the Proms

This year’s BBC Proms have a number of concerts of Mahler’s music. Matthias Goerne, Jonathan Nott, David Robertson, Dawn Upshaw, Bernard Haitink and Riccardo Chailly take their respective turns on stage at the Royal Albert Hall.

The works being performed are:

Kindertotenlieder – Prom 65
Des Knaben Wunderhorn – selection – PCM 13
Lieder eines fahrenden Gesellen – Prom 76
Symphony No.4 – Prom 59
Symphony No.6 – Prom 28
Symphony No.9 – Prom 5
Symphony No.10 (compl. Cooke) – Prom 69

All concerts are broadcast live on BBC Radio 3 (available online).

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