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  • Mahler: Symphony No. 9 / Schubert:  Symphony No. 8
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Mahler: Symphony No. 9 / Schubert: Symphony No. 8 Import

17 customer reviews

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Audio CD, Import, March 1, 2000
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Editorial Reviews

Recently deceased conductor Carlo Maria Giulini had a long and distinguished career and many regard his years at the helm of the Chicago Symphony Orchestra as among his most inspired. Both works receive appropriately expansive readings with Giulini taking great care in drawing out the orchestral sonorous and chromatic potential. Giulini's judicious moderate tempos particularly in the Mahler, are especially well suited to the composers spiritual grand plan. Deutsche Grammophon's sound is remarkably good with exceptional presence and detail.


Product Details

  • Performer: Carlo Maria Giulini, Chicago Symphony Orchestra, Gustav Mahler
  • Audio CD (March 1, 2000)
  • Number of Discs: 2
  • Format: Import
  • Label: Dg Imports
  • ASIN: B00004R7X2
  • Average Customer Review: 4.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (17 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #120,872 in Music (See Top 100 in Music)

Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

35 of 36 people found the following review helpful By L. Johan on December 20, 2003
Format: Audio CD
This recording is usually overlooked among contemporary reviewers and many collectors. But it is - in fact, I would like to say - one of the very best recordings of Mahler's ninth symphony ever. In my view, it belongs to the same leage as Barbirolli's, Klemperer's, and Walter's interpretations of this work, in being both a personal testimony and and an objective, clear presentation of Mahler's most demanding score.
Giulini's grasp of the overall structure and his attention to particular details are impressive. He is supported by the stunning playing of Chicago Symphony Orchestra in top form. And the recording quality is superb.
Moreover, for collectors impressed by awards it can be mentioned that Giulini's account has received a whole bunch: Grand Prix du Discophile Repertoire 1977, Prix Mondiale du Disque, Montreux 1977, Record Academy Prize, Tokyo 1977, International Record Critics Award 1977, Deutscher Schallplatenpreis 1978, Grand Prix International du Disque 1978, Grammy Award 1978 and, finally, the Grand Premio del Disco "Ritmo" 1978.
This incarnation of the recording is coupled with a very fine interpretation of Schubert's unfinished symphony. It is as good as the Mahler piece.
Strongly recommended - what else?
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20 of 21 people found the following review helpful By N. Haggin on June 20, 2005
Format: Audio CD Verified Purchase
After having been introduced to Mahler 9 through Boulez's sterile reading on DG, and then moving to Haitink's on Philips (which is nonetheless quite good) I finally "got" Mahler 9 after listening to the famous 1938 Bruno Walter recording on the radio one day. Perversely, I then went and bought this performance; in its leisurely pace, the opposite of the Walter. I was not disappointed.

Do not be afraid of the slow tempi; Giulini is one of those conductors of genius who can make it work, and sometimes even convince you that it's better their way, which he does in the first and fourth movements. I agree with other reviewers that he could have brought out more of the parodistic qualities of the second and third movements, but that is small potatoes compared to his attention to musical detail, and the controlled passion in his interpretation. Giulini also had a knack for getting precisely the sound he wanted out of any orchestra, even if they were used to playing differently, and much as I like Solti I prefer the sound Giulini coaxes here from the CSO.

Schubert's "Unfinished" is an odd piece; a sonata-allegro that is not overly fast (Allegro moderato), and a slow movement that is not particularly slow (Andante con moto). Giulini's rendering is equal in quality to his Mahler; the tempo of the first movement is, again, slower than I'm used to, but is justified by Schubert's marking. As with the Mahler, the attention to detail distinguishes the performance. For example, Giulini does not succumb to the temptation of accentuating the 'cello melody in the first movement; it's marked pianissimo in the score and he lets it be pianissimo, a brief ray of light in its stormy surroundings.

An excellent recording, and now that Maestro Giulini has died, a fitting tribute to his music-making. Highly recommended.
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15 of 15 people found the following review helpful By Grady Harp HALL OF FAMETOP 100 REVIEWERVINE VOICE on January 28, 2005
Format: Audio CD
After a recent review of the Boulez recording of the Mahler 9th Symphony a friend inquired about my response to the Giulini recording of this powerful farewell work, and thanks to that inquiry I brought out this older recording issued in 1977, originally on two discs, a recording with the poet of the baton Carlo Maria Giulini conducting the Chicago Symphony Orchestra in a performance that won about every prize available for recorded music. I have listened to little since that moment.

Though it is now amazing to see the number of entries here at Amazon.com of this difficult Mahler work, there are few that approach the inherent honesty of Giulini's approach to this at times puzzling work. But from the opening bars of the first movement it is apparent that Giulini is in tandem with Mahler's troubled yet poetic spirit. The phrasing is a consistent appreciation of the question/answer dialogue Mahler created in the orchestration. Gone are the confusing tempi changes apparent in other conductor's struggle with this work. Giulini just relaxes and lets the idealism and the turmoil wage their own transitory struggles and in doing so he opens the windows of clarity to let in the sun that bathes this paean to dying.

In the second and third movements Giulini, abetted by the superb playing of the Chicago Symphony Orchestra in its finest days, lets the landlers dance and the rondos burlesque as if inhaling the last of worldly delights before the final submission to fate that lifts the final movement into an ethereal range unmatched by other interpretations. This is conducting and innate communication with the soul of the music and the composer.

This remastered recording includes a profound reading of the Schubert 8th symphony, but save that for another day. This Mahler 9 is an experience to savour by itself. Grady Harp. January 2005
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15 of 17 people found the following review helpful By Paul Bubny on July 23, 2004
Format: Audio CD
Giulini manages to be coolheaded about this wrenching and massive score while allowing some northern Italian/southern Austrian warmth to infiltrate it. It is in fact less of a heart-on-sleeve performance than Barbirolli's, let alone any of Bernstein's, but the performance's architectural splendor is thoroughly convincing--overcoming slight reservations that may creep in when looking at the total timing on the first movement (31.5 minutes, or two minutes slower than the already leisurely Bernstein/Concertgebouw on the same label). In this approach he is actually aided by the Chicago Symphony, a great orchestra whose sound is normally inappropriate for Mahler. By the way, both the original LPs and the first CD release were marred by a weird, unnatural vibrato effect in some string passages, but the remastering for DG's "The Originals" series fixes this. Fortunately.
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Mahler: Symphony No. 9 / Schubert:  Symphony No. 8
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