Daniel Harding

Daniel Harding: Mahler: Symphony No.9

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Artist: Daniel Harding

Artist: Daniel Harding
Title: Mahler: Symphony No.9

While Gustav Mahler's "Symphony No. 9 in D major" was his last completed symphony and came to be regarded as his farewell to life (notwithstanding the substantial effort he put into writing his unfinished "Symphony No. 10 in F sharp major," which wasn't heard in a complete performing version until the 1960s), there is a case to be made for this penultimate symphony as a climactic engagement with the forces of existence, rather than as a last will and testament. Daniel Harding and the Swedish Radio Symphony Orchestra deliver a powerful reading that contends with Mahler's characteristic themes of death, fate, conflict, and reconciliation, which are all familiar from the earlier symphonies; yet they give the "Ninth" a muscular vigor and visceral excitement that seem to balance, if not wholly override, the morbidity of the first movement and the ecstasy of the finale. This is music of an internal struggle, and Harding emphasizes the tension that grows out of Mahler's increasingly dissonant counterpoint and driving rhythms, chiefly in the bumptious, Ländler-based Scherzo and the sardonic Rondo-Burleske, the intensely active inner movements suggesting that Mahler's state of mind was far from final things. Harmonia Mundi's sound has a wide dynamic range, so the softest passages in the outer movements may require some adjustment of the volume, though most of the performance is fully audible at a comfortable mid-level.

1.1 I. Andante Comodo
1.2 II. Im Tempo Eines Gemächlichen Ländlers. Etwas Täppisch Und Sehr Derb
1.3 III. Rondo: Burleske. Allegro Assai. Sehr Trotzig
1.4 IV. Adagio. Sehr Langsam Und Noch Zurückhaltend

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