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Gustav Mahler: The Symphonies Paperback – March 1, 2003


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Gustav Mahler: The Symphonies + Symphonies Nos. 1 and 2 in Full Score (Dover Music Scores) + Symphonies Nos. 3 and 4 in Full Score (Dover Music Scores)
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Product Details

  • Paperback: 363 pages
  • Publisher: Amadeus Press (March 1, 2003)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1574670255
  • ISBN-13: 978-1574670257
  • Product Dimensions: 9 x 6 x 0.9 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.4 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (11 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #366,380 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

Review

An enlightening book. -- Classical Music Magazine

It is excellent. -- American Record Guide, Sept/Oct 1994

The translation by Vernon and Jutta Wickler is extremely readable. --Gerald S. Fox, President, The New York Mahlerites , November 1, 1999

Language Notes

Text: English (translation)
Original Language: German --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

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Customer Reviews

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Truly a masterpiece!
Thales Fontanetti
Floros pays great respect to, and provides excellent insight into, the work of Cooke in his (Floros') plan to describe the full symphonic output of Mahler.
Bob Zeidler
The Greek musicologist, Mr. Constantin Floros, offers an interesting analysis of each Symphony of this Austrian composer.
Javier

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

117 of 118 people found the following review helpful By Bob Zeidler on August 14, 2000
Format: Paperback
The symphonies of Gustav Mahler can be listened to on more than one level. As complex and forward-looking as they are, they nonetheless can connect at an elemental, "visceral" level for many listeners.

However, for a fuller appreciation of both the details and the profundity which are in these works, as well as for insight into Mahler's creative processes, some outside help is required, and this help is usually not forthcoming from the liner or booklet notes that accompany recordings, or from the program notes that accompany performances. This is precisely where this excellent book by Constantin Floros fits in.

First, a few words on what this book is not, and does not purport to be. It is not a comparative discography of available performances; in fact, it neither lists nor recommends recordings. Second, it is not a critical biography of Mahler; the interested reader is referred to the outstanding (but much more expensive) volumes by Henry-Louis de la Grange, available elsewhere at Amazon.com. Third, it is not a psychological study of Mahler, relating, as such a study might, such connections between the man and the music; an excellent small volume by Theodor Adorno, "Mahler: A Musical Physiognomy" covers that territory very well, and is also available elsewhere at Amazon.com. Fourth, and finally, it is not a set of musical scores of the symphonies; those as well, published by Dover in inexpensive paperback editions, can be found at Amazon.com

So, just what is this Floros book? It is the perfect companion for the serious Mahlerite in understanding the genesis and the thematic, harmonic and interpretational details of each of Mahler's ten symphonies, and the interrelationships and comparisons among them.
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24 of 27 people found the following review helpful By A Customer on November 5, 1997
Format: Paperback
The book was translated very well. It broke each symphony down by movement and gave its history, as well as a breif analysis. I definite must for Mahler fans!
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23 of 27 people found the following review helpful By William L. Harwood on June 1, 2000
Format: Paperback
If you want to know how a Mahler symphony is put together and why it works, this is the only book that does it. Reading it with a score at hand is useful, but not necessary. Technical but worth it.
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6 of 6 people found the following review helpful By Mr John Haueisen VINE VOICE on May 26, 2008
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
By the time I opened this book I had already read more than a dozen biographies of composer Gustav Mahler. What could this one add?

Well, it surprised me. It lives up to its name: GUSTAV MAHLER: THE SYMPHONIES. What it does is give you a thorough explanation of each Mahler symphony. It tells you things like when it was written, why it was written, how it was written, and suggestions as to "what the music means," which is especially relevant to Mahler's music.

Thus, if I could have only a single book on Mahler, this would be the one I would keep, because it will be my learned, private guide or tutor, to better help me understand--and love even more--each Mahler symphony
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By Javier on December 15, 2010
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
It is an amazing introduction to Mahler's Symphonies for an audience that loves his music. The programmatic ideas in his four first symphonies are well depicted through Mahler's own letters and his personal approach to musical trends of his time. The Greek musicologist, Mr. Constantin Floros, offers an interesting analysis of each Symphony of this Austrian composer. The book also illustrates few musical examples of the composer's music and some sketches of his symphonies. It is a good book for advanced students of music, musicologists, and reviewers. However you don't have to be music major to enjoy and understand this book that suggests us renewed ideas of the late-romantic music.
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9 of 13 people found the following review helpful By Linda McDougall on July 4, 2009
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
I wish I could be as enthusiastic about this work as the other reviewers, and I might be being picky, but as Mahler has been a constant study and companion to me, I found myself irritated by the more personal observations made by the author.
The musical analyses are beyond reproach - so I won't go there. However,as one cannot separate the soul of Mahler from his music, I wondered why Floros backs them up with some rather inane quotes from Alma's memoirs and historical inaccuracies.

Let me simply deal with the incomplete Tenth Symphony - it's a good example. And I quote from Alma's recollections:"...he was in deepest turmoil...he recognized that he had led the life of a psycopath" - her reason for Mahler's exclamations to her on the score.
As much as I admire Alma Maher, I must,as a psychoanalyst, question her damning use of the word "psychopath", something she knew absolutely nothing about at a time when Freud was tearing his hair out in Vienna because not one of the so-called elite dared to consider a look at their troubled psyches. Mahler was about as far away from a psychopath as Franz Schubert.
The author also attributes his suffering in 1910 as a direct result of the appearance of Walter Gropius on the scene, a "long-time admirer" of Alma. Excuse me, has anyone forgotten that she and Gropius were ardent lovers? And earlier on in the book, Floros states, after quoting lines Mahler wrote about his own fears, that he knew he was on the brink of insanity.

What irks me in this type of amateur psychology is the treatment of a genius as an object to be poked at. This great, sensitive and passionate composer was a person that intellectuals such as this author can never understand...
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