Mahler’s Symphony No. 6: “A Hero’s Life”?

Who is the “hero” in Mahler’s Symphony No. 6? Mahler composed his sixth symphony over the summers of 1903 and 1904. This was a very fulfilling time. His career was increasingly successful. He had married in 1902 and now had a daughter, with another on the way (the second being born just before completion of […]

MahlerFest will present Mahler’s Symphony No. 6 and Five Ruckert Lieder

“My Sixth will present riddles that are approachable only by a generation which has absorbed and digested my first five.” – Gustav Mahler writing to biographer Richard Specht, c. 1904 We don’t really know what Mahler was referring to, but the audience is presented with a plethora of persistent riddles when contemplating and experiencing the […]

Egon Wellesz – Eye-witness to Gustav Mahler

What was the musical scene like in Vienna when Mahler was conductor of the opera?  What was Mahler’s conducting style like? Were Mahler’s later compositions influenced by the younger generation of serial composers?  Which conductor comes closest to Mahler’s own conducting style? The well-known, eloquent, and brilliant British Musicologist Deryck Cooke interviewed Egon Wellesz, the […]

Remembering Adolph “Bud” Herseth

Bud Herseth, the longtime principal trumpet for the Chicago Symphony passed away Saturday, April 13, 2013, at age 91. Bud Herseth was hands-down recognized as the greatest orchestral trumpet player of his generation.  He is from the same mold as Harry Glantz, principal trumpet for the New York Philharmonic and NBC Symphony under Arturo Toscanini […]

To Tenth, or Not To Tenth, that is the question…

There’s a tempest raging over at Norman Lebrecht’s “house”.  The classical music uber-blogger, and all-around maven, attended a performance of the Deryck Cooke “performing version” of Mahler’s 10th Symphony in Liverpool, conducted by Vasily Patrenko last night (March 22).  As far as Lebrecht is concerned “It is one of the biggest interpretive challenges in the […]

Farewell to Wolfgang Sawallisch

The great German conductor and pianist,Wolfgang Sawallisch passed away at his home in Grassau,  Germany, Friday February 22, he was 89. Sawallisch was known for his consistently great interpretations of the German Romantic Tradition in classical music, especially the music of Richard Strauss and Richard Wagner, as well as the music of Anton Bruckner, and […]