Mahler: Symphony No 1

By Quantrill, Peter | Gramophone, June 2018 | Go to article overview

Mahler: Symphony No 1


Quantrill, Peter, Gramophone


Mahler as [DVD] [BR]

Symphony No 1

Leipzig Gewandhaus Orchestra / Riccardo Chailly

Accentus (F) [DVD] ACC20335; [BR] ACC10335

(62' + 24' * NTSC * 16:9 * 1080i * DTS-HD MA, DTS5.1 & PCM stereo * 0 * s)

Recorded live, January 2015

Includes interview with Riccardo Chailly

At least on record, the Leipzig Gewandhaus does not have much of a Mahler tradition--Masur and Neumann briskly dispatching this and that--but the First Symphony was completed in the city, as Riccardo Chailly reminds us in an illuminating interview.

However, as Rob Cowan cautioned when reviewing the Ninth in this now almost-complete cycle, save the bonus until you've seen the performance, which is full of its own insights. There's an irresistible clarity to Chailly's illumination of Mahler's symphonic antecedents: the deformation of Beethoven's Ninth in the opening bars, as well as their more direct debt to the moment of sudden mystery in the middle of the finale to Brahms's Second. The second-movement Landler has a gruff, never coarsened impetus 'Un bal' glimpsed through the dirty windows of the Bohemian tavern owned by Mahler's violent father Bernhard and if Berlioz is father to the First, Beethoven's Pastoral is granddaddy to all Mahler's infusions of symphonic form with life stories. …

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