Mahler: The Complete Works - 150th Anniversary Box
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150th Anniversary Box - Mahler
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EMI classics celebrates the 150th anniversary of Gustav Mahler with the release of this exclusive 16-CD box set containing the composers complete works.
About the Artist
GUSTAV MAHLER, born on 7th July 1860, was not only a great composer but a fine conductor who influenced his successors in both fields; indeed his appeal to subsequent generations has been extensive and wide -- Zemlinsky, Schönberg, Berg and Webern in Austria, Shostakovitch in Russia, Britten in Britain and Copland in America are just a few to acknowledge their debt. His influence also spread across the so-called boundary between classical and popular music in that Paul McCartney wrote "I have always adored Mahler, and Mahler was a major influence on the music of The Beatles. John and me used to sit and do the Kindertotenlieder and Wunderhorn for hours, we'd take turns singing and playing the piano. We thought Mahler was great." To celebrate his monumental 150th anniversary, EMI Classics releases Mahler's complete works performed by some of the world's most highly lauded performers of the past and present. Works include the rightly famous "Resurrection" symphony recording conducted by Otto Klemperer, a live recording of Symphony No.5 in C sharp minor -- including the famous Adagietto, as well as Sir Simon Rattle's account of the Third Symphony together with the movement Blumine, originally planned for the First Symphony, conducted by Paavo Järvi.
- Is Discontinued By Manufacturer : No
- Product Dimensions : 5.28 x 5.28 x 2.09 inches; 1.06 Pounds
- Manufacturer : Warner Classics
- Original Release Date : 2010
- SPARS Code : ADD
- Date First Available : March 20, 2010
- Label : Warner Classics
- ASIN : B003D0ZNWY
- Number of discs : 16
Best Sellers Rank:
#43,296 in CDs & Vinyl (See Top 100 in CDs & Vinyl)
- #945 in Symphonies (CDs & Vinyl)
- Customer Reviews:
Top reviews from the United States
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well after listening to several CDs I was not at all disappointed with my choice. superb performances by the different conductors and orchestras. conductor like Simon rattle, Otto Klemperer. Klaus tennstedt , john Barbirolli ,and George Szell. orchestra like the London philharmonic orchestra, Berliner philharmonic and London symphony orchestra.
they did an incredible work on the different pieces represented here. I find myself getting lost in the music while listening to each track and his works. well worth invested time.
great addition to my collection.
I accept that those who are very experienced and knowledgeable of Mahler's music may find some fault with certain selections in this box set, but really, how can you go wrong when 16 CDs, with high quality artists and performances, are offered for just a couple dollars per disc?? Surely this is something, whether you are a Mahler fan or simply want to explore his music, that you can't hardly pass up - I could not, and I have enough other Mahler recordings that I am certainly in no dire need of more.
Other reviewers have very kindly detailed the artists who are represented on these discs, and most of those reviews have also been very complimentary. Going beyond Amazon, my survey of other reviews accessible on-line also found very positive comments - MusicWeb/Simon Thompson rate this collection above the DG set (see link below), and comments on classical music forums are positive. In this collection, to take one illustration, you will find all of Mahler's symphonies, with a selection of world-class conductors: Giulini (1), Klemperer (2), Rattle (3, 7, 10), Horenstein (4), Tennstedt (5, 8), Barbirolli (6, 9), and the price for this complete set is comparable to other box's for the ten symphonies on their own!
This box includes the 1968 performance of Mahler's 12 songs Leider aus 'Des Knaben Wunderhorn' ('The Young Lad's Magic Horn'), with Dietrich Fischer-Dieskau, Elisabeth Schwarzkopf and George Szell conducting the London Symphony Orchestra, generally considered to be one of the finest available.
Most of the performances are from EMI's archives and go back as far as 1949 (Kindertotenlieder, Kathleen Ferrier, contralto, Vienna Philharmonic, conducted by Bruno Walter). Also included are three songs that have been newly recorded for this release by Ian Bostridge and Antonio Pappano (Im Lenz, Winterlied, and Maitanz im Grunen, at the beginning of CD 4), in order to achieve "completeness".
My conclusion - that if judged only based upon the quality of the performances, this set would still merit at least 4 stars out of 5. It is the value that this set represents, that pushes it to 5 full stars easily.
The packaging is similar to what is normally done for a compilation set such as this one. The box is a heavy cardboard container which opens up to provide full access to the CD's. Each CD is in an individual cardboard sleeve. Each disc sleeve is labeled with the track contents and timing. The 35 page booklet included with the set does provide details for the tracks on each CD, with performers as well as recording details (date recorded, venue, etc). The booklet also includes a modest essay "A century of Mahler" written by David Gutman. The packaging and booklet are completely satisfactory for my needs, and the whole thing takes up a minimum amount of room compared to the original "jewel box" plastic holders that CD's were originally packaged in. Frankly I prefer such packaging as it is much more efficient and still provides very adequate protection to the CD's.
Also included as a .pdf file on CD #16, is the complete text of all sung works, a 43 page document, in English, German and French. (This is provided on a separate partition on the CD, so Mac users may not immediately find this when displaying the disc contents in the Finder window. And thanks to one of the other reviewers who pointed this out - I had not noticed it when initially going through the discs, and it is only very obscurely mentioned in the booklet and on the back of the box, and could be very easily missed).
That the large record companies are now offering these large and high-quality collections of music, for a small fraction of what they would have cost to purchase (as separate CD's of course) just a few years ago - this is a good thing! I don't see this going on forever!
For me, this is a lifetime purchase as well as one to pass down to future generations. In the coming years I will enjoy comparing these performances with others in my collection (symphonies by Kubelik and Bavarian Radio Symphony Orchestra, for one: Mahler: 10 Symphonies ). I am sure that some of these performances will be, for me, great ones. And others, less great. Isn't that part of the enjoyment of exploring this music?
I am not an advocate of purchasing large CD sets just because they are inexpensive. Some seem to me to be compilations of second-rate recordings and/or performances (or worse), and I would not want those in my collection regardless of the price. That is absolutely not the case here.
I give this 5 stars because of the combination of value and performance, with value playing an equal part in the decision here. The Deutsche Grammophon box set ( Gustav Mahler: Complete Edition ) is also tempting, but it is also over twice the price (at the time of writing this review).
I think that this collection is an absolute winner, hands down.
I've gotten through half of the cds so far and, although I have a modestly comprehensive collection of Mahler, I own only one of the 16 included in the collection.
I think this is a great gift idea for a young musician interested in trying new venues or for anyone interested in Mahler's music. Sure there are a few pieces that may not be the best ever, but all are good and worth a listen. Just a great value and collection.
Top reviews from other countries
I love most of the performances and have objections toward several others, however, there is not a single mediocre recording here. The price of the set is so low that the purchase will guarantee satisfaction for a novice and a Mahler aficionado alike. Highly recommended!