Orchestre des Champs-Elysées
Philippe Herreweghe | direction
Magdalena Kožená | mezzo-soprano
Andrew Staples | tenor
Mahler's Das Lied von der Erde, a moving work of humanity with Magdalena Kožená and Andrew Stamples.
Mahler Das Lied von der Erde
Concert sung in German, surtitled in French and English
Das Lied von der Erde (The Song of the Earth) is Mahler's last work and was composed in the summer of 1908 after two of the most dramatic years in the composer's life, when he lost his beloved daughter, left the direction of the Vienna Opera and learned of the heart disease that was to claim him in the spring of 1911. An ideal fusion of the Lied and the symphony, the orchestra is adorned here with an intimate refinement that comes close to the spirit of chamber music. The voices are treated as instruments in their own right in the orchestra, creating a perfect balance between the legibility of the singing and the power of the orchestra. The work was originally written for tenor and baryon, but the female voices of contralto and mezzo have often found a dream setting. It is also one of Mahler's most famous works, acclaimed by nearly 150 different recordings since its premiere (including the mythical version by Kathleen Ferrier and Bruno Walter in 1952). Magdalena Kožená could not resist it and recorded it in her turn in 2018 under the direction of Simon Rattle with the Bavarian Radio Orchestra. The dramatic power of the mezzo and her intelligence of the text are marvellous.
PRODUCTION Théâtre des Champs-Elysées