Mahler Symphonies

Discussion in 'The Rehearsal Room' started by Australian Euphonium, Sep 3, 2004.

  1. ....Just looking into aquiring some recordings of these fine works. I was wondering if anyone here knew of what would be the best way to go about doing this. Have any of the 'great' orchestras done the full set in a series or does anyone know which individual recordings are the best...

    As always, any help, much appreciated
  2. AndyCat

    AndyCat Active Member

    Chicago did a full set with Solti, That's quite good taken as a whole.
    My favourite 2nd is CBSO/Rattle.

    You've probably started me on a long relistening series now :)
  3. PeterBale

    PeterBale Moderator Staff Member

  4. Anglo Music Press

    Anglo Music Press Well-Known Member

    Look out for recordings by Tennstedt (live ones especially!). Also Karajan No 5 is magnificent.
  5. GJG

    GJG Well-Known Member

    Don't know if this is of any use to you out in Oz, however are currently offering a complete Mahler Symphonies box set (11CD's - Klaus Tennstedt + London Phil. - EMI) for the amazingly low price of £25.99.

    Catalogue Number is CZS5729412


    Last edited: Sep 3, 2004
  6. Dave Payn

    Dave Payn Active Member

    Personally, I'm quite a fan of LSO/Mariss Jansons recording of Mahler 6 on LSO Live. (But then, I'm quite partial to performances Jansons conducts!) In UK money it's £7.99 for a 2CD set
  7. Les Wood

    Les Wood Member

    Abbado and the Vienna Box Set - all ten symphonies. The playing on these CDs is fantastic and it's not until you hear the applause at the end that you realise some of them are actually live! Number 7 is the best IMHO.

    Les Wood
    Kirkintilloch Band
  8. James Yelland

    James Yelland Active Member

    I hesitate to take issue with the eminent Mr Anglo Music Press, whose knowledge of music is far superior to mine, but imho Tennstedt's reading of 2 with LPO, at least, is often rather turgid - the tempo's are frequently glacial, and you think he is never going to get to the end. As far as 2 goes, it's Solti and the CSO for me.
  9. Cheers for the suggestions.....As for my choice, I've always been a sucker for Chicago:) and it's also the easiest one to get my hands on at the moment
  10. carlwoodman

    carlwoodman Member

    I recently bought Mahler 6 played by the LSO conducted by my favourite (living) conductor Mariss Jansons on the LSO Live label number LSO0038.
    It's got a Gramophone 'Editor's Choice' sticker on the cover so they must have liked it too.
    I ordered it online and it arrived in a couple of days.
    Great value, I'd say, at only £7.99!
  11. Tobin

    Tobin Member

    Sony currently have the full set of Mahlersymphonies availaible. They are performed by The New York Phil - Leonard Bernstein. Price is approx $60 (US), which is great value.

    As mentioned in a couple of the previous posts try and get a hold of the live performances - really shows how good these musicians are (especially the brass section!!)

    Also try and get a hold of all the different interpretations, and there are a wide range, it shows how these master conductors can bring the music alive in many different ways. Karajan's reading of M2 is vastly different from Solti's - both obviously brillliant.
  12. Verbal Kint

    Verbal Kint New Member

    Perhaps Mr Yelland should not be so opinionated on such a subjective matter, and who seriously uses the word glacial in this context anyway! I like the Bernstein/New York recordings, but that's just a personal preference, of course.
  13. Straightmute

    Straightmute Active Member

    I love the Abbado recordings but I keep on going back to the set that Rafael Kubelik made with the Bavarian Radio Orchestra. They were the first Mahler I heard, and what they lack in technical precision they certainly make up for in emotional power and musical understanding.
  14. James Yelland

    James Yelland Active Member

    Eh???? I'm afraid I don't follow you. When it comes to subjective matters, my opinion is all I've got!!
  15. Tobin

    Tobin Member

    People shouldn't be criticised for having an opinion. It would be an incredibly boring world if we all followed the same thought processes.

    A musical piece can vary in so many ways, and what pleases one listener may really bore another - there is no right or wrong way.

    Rather than beliitle someone for having a different opinion, simply give a reason why you think one interpretation is better than the other (FOR YOU!!!).
  16. GJG

    GJG Well-Known Member

    I'm with you there. Although I have other recordings of individual symphonies I don't think you can really beat the Kubelik set for all round value - seem to remember I got mine for a tenner as an introductory offer for the Britannia record club ...

    For the record (no pun intended) [Warning: entering anorak mode] here are my favourite individual versions:

    I. - Still with the Kubelik here
    II. - CBSO/Rattle
    III. - LAPhil./Mehta
    IV. - not one of my favourites
    V. - Philharmonia/Sinopolli (John Wallace - 'nuff said!)
    VI. - Chicago/Abbado
    VII. - Never really got into it enough to form an opinion
    VIII. - Difficult one; my favourite Mahler symphony, but even the best Orchestras/Conductors seem to have difficulty creating a consistently good performance/recording, possibly because of the sheer scale of the work. I have several versions, but they're all "good in parts" but fail to be consistent (starting to sound like an adjudicator now!) - would probably have to stick with the Kubelik as an 'all-rounder'
    IX. - Chicago/Guilini
    X. - So far as the "Adagio" is concerned, the LPO/Tennstedt version 'does it' for me; I don't really count the "re-constituted" full version.

    Just my "opinions".

  17. Brian Bowen

    Brian Bowen Active Member

    It might be worth mentioning Gilbert Kaplan and the Symphony No. 2 (Resurrection). It was stated in the Gramophone (Dec. 2003) that his 1988 recording of the work with the LSO remains the best-selling Mahler recording ever, with sales of more than 175,000. In 2003, DG issued a new recording by him of the same symphony with the Vienna PO. Interestingly, Kaplan isn’t one of the international conducting celebs, but originally a New York publisher (founder of Institutional Investor) who fell under the spell of Mahler and the Resurrection Symphony in particular, and has since traveled the world conducting it.

    His 1988 recording has appeared under various labels (mine, purchased in the USA, is on the MCA label). I can well understand Kaplan’s love of No. 2: I also have the versions by Sinopoli/Philharmonia and Rattle/CBSO.

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