Presented by Penny Gore
Mahler's last completed symphony, and one he never lived to hear, is brought to life in the Royal Albert Hall by Sir Roger Norrington in one of his final concerts as Principal Conductor of the Stuttgart Radio Symphony Orchestra, a post he has held for 13 years.
The Ninth Symphony was a work written at a time of personal crisis for Mahler, following the death of his daughter Maria, the loss of his job at the Vienna Court Opera and the diagnosis of his own heart disease. Musically, however, while allusions to death abound, ultimately the work fades into peaceful resignation; as Alban Berg described it: "it expresses an extraordinary love of the earth, of nature, the longing to live in peace, to enjoy it completely to the very heart of one's being, before death comes, as irresistibly it does".
Mahler: Symphony No. 9
Stuttgart Radio Symphony Orchestra (SWR)
Sir Roger Norrington (conductor)