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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
He made overwhelmingly huge climaxes and developed themes and motifs over the course of an entire symphony in a fashion second only to Sibelius. Here are my favorite pieces of Mahler:

Symphony No. 1 in D major
Symphony No. 5 in C-sharp minor
Symphony No. 6 in A minor, "Tragic" (definitely my favorite)
Das Lied von der Erde
Symphony No. 9 in D major
 

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What can I say, I'm not a fan of Gustav Mahler.
Everything I have listened to sounds like a Requiem (maybe I haven't listened to enough.)
Is anything by him quick and lively? Presto? Vivace? even Allegro? :S

Everything I hear by him is either Adagio, Largo, or Lento. Suggestions?
The only thing I've heard that's interesting is the beginning of the horn solo in No. 9 and then it gets boring :S. Hope I don't get flamed now, lol.
 

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Mahler is definitely in my top three composers (i have this habit of ranking absolutely everything)

I just got the Kubelik cycle of Mahler's symphonies, and a lot of the pieces are very good. I especially like 1, 2, 4, and 6 off of this set. For 5 and 9 I have Bernstein and Karajan respectively

My favourite Mahler recording I own is probably Chailly's Symphony No. 3.

What can I say, I'm not a fan of Gustav Mahler.
Everything I have listened to sounds like a Requiem (maybe I haven't listened to enough.)
When I first heard the opening movement of Symphony number 4 i was quite shocked, as it didn't sound like it expressed usual Mahler themes. Maybe try that one if you want an in to Mahler. I especially like how in the opening the flutes echo the bells.
 

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We has about a score's worth of people who let us know their responses to this topic, as well.
Wow.

Check out Nos. 5, 6 and 7. There are some parts in those which are unforgettable!
Not going to disagree with a syllable of this- but in the context of the prior post (someone seeking to "gain traction" with Mahler), I have to go :eek: at the mention of 7.

This one would be the last one to cross my mind as a proposal to a Mahler neophyte.
Is anything by him quick and lively?
Can't really call it lively, but check out the strings in the opening two movements of 5. Even if the "pulse" doesn't strike one as rapid, the agitation of the stringed instruments, I'm sure, doesn't feel anything like slow to those who play it. And, as long as I'm on the topic, you'll find the conclusion of 5 is very lively.
 

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Discussion Starter · #9 ·
everything was fine until you said "second only to Sibelius". Could you prove that for us, please?
Sibelius was known for his cohesive themes through a symphony. That's what I'm meaning. I'm not saying Sibelius was definitely a better composer than Mahler, but there were aspects of both that stood out. Sibelius' seventh symphony is the epitome of developing a theme throughout a symphony, quite possibly the greatest in that respect in history.

I don't mean "Sibelius is better than Mahler." I just mean that Mahler was really great in his development of themes throughout a symphony, second to Sibelius.

I just really hope I don't get flamed...:p
 

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Discussion Starter · #13 ·
What I meant by that statement that seems to be sparking such controversy here is that Mahler was only second to Sibelius in cohesive theme development, not necessarily in anything else! That's all!
 

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I listen to Mahler on and off, I don't listen to him that much now I am older. But, when i was a teenager i used to listen to his symphonies day and night. For some reason, I have gain more appreciation of the 3rd symphony over the years, it's really quite a nice piece. I would recommend the recording by Sinopoli and Philharmonia, and I also heard some wonderful excerpts from Farao Classics's website, the one conducted by Mehta and The Bavarian State Orchestra.
you can listen to the excerpt here:
http://www.farao-classics.de/english/catalogue/mahler3-e.html
 

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I'm a huge Mahler fan, mostly due to the sheer epicness of his scale. It always feels like something monumental has just occurred after I finish one of his symphonies.

Is anything by him quick and lively? Presto? Vivace? even Allegro? :S
That's not really the point with Mahler. His music is more about subtlety and gradual building than quickness and excitement.
 

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Ive always enjoyed Mahler's music so much that....I just don't understand why someone like Stravinsky would state that his music "...wasn't music...". I like Stravinsky too. A totally different style, yes, but to claim that it isn't music is a bit much.
 

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I don't see why people say Mahler is an acquired taste. I only really started listening to classical music this summer, and a fast favourite of mine was the 9th symphony with Karajan. The themes are so dramatic and lend themselves to real active listening (turn the lights off and blast it!). Ditto to Buddha Bandit's comments, something momentous has occured after listening to any Mahler symphony. THe emotional intensity is almost unparalleled.

No composer so consistently digs so deep into me as Mahler.
 
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