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Gustav Mahler: The Symphonies Paperback [Format Kindle]

Constantin Floros , Vernon and Jutta Wicker
5.0 étoiles sur 5  Voir tous les commentaires (1 commentaire client)

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(Amadeus). Mahler's 10 symphonies and Das Lied von der Erde are intensely personal statements that have touched wide audiences. This survey examines each of the works, revealing their programmatic and personal aspects, as well as Mahler's musical techniques.

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4 internautes sur 4 ont trouvé ce commentaire utile 
Cet ouvrage écrit par un universitaire allemand (Université de HAMBOURG) est le seul écrit disponible offrant une analyse musicale complète et détaillée de l'oeuvre orchestrale de MAHLER.De par la clarté de ses propos , sa rigeur rédactionelle et la multitude des informations : l'ouvrage de C.FLOROS est une mine pour tous les fans de MAHLER.A se procurer d'urgence !
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Amazon.com: 4.4 étoiles sur 5  11 commentaires
120 internautes sur 122 ont trouvé ce commentaire utile 
5.0 étoiles sur 5 Absolutely Indispensable for the Mahlerite. 14 août 2000
Par Bob Zeidler - Publié sur Amazon.com
The symphonies of Gustav Mahler can be listened to on more than one level. As complex and forward-looking as they are, they nonetheless can connect at an elemental, "visceral" level for many listeners.

However, for a fuller appreciation of both the details and the profundity which are in these works, as well as for insight into Mahler's creative processes, some outside help is required, and this help is usually not forthcoming from the liner or booklet notes that accompany recordings, or from the program notes that accompany performances. This is precisely where this excellent book by Constantin Floros fits in.

First, a few words on what this book is not, and does not purport to be. It is not a comparative discography of available performances; in fact, it neither lists nor recommends recordings. Second, it is not a critical biography of Mahler; the interested reader is referred to the outstanding (but much more expensive) volumes by Henry-Louis de la Grange, available elsewhere at Amazon.com. Third, it is not a psychological study of Mahler, relating, as such a study might, such connections between the man and the music; an excellent small volume by Theodor Adorno, "Mahler: A Musical Physiognomy" covers that territory very well, and is also available elsewhere at Amazon.com. Fourth, and finally, it is not a set of musical scores of the symphonies; those as well, published by Dover in inexpensive paperback editions, can be found at Amazon.com

So, just what is this Floros book? It is the perfect companion for the serious Mahlerite in understanding the genesis and the thematic, harmonic and interpretational details of each of Mahler's ten symphonies, and the interrelationships and comparisons among them. It has just enough of the material covered in the references noted above, along with detailed analyses of the symphonies, for each of them to be better understood and placed in historical and musical context by the listener. Its greatest insight into these symphonies comes largely from Floros' remarkable scholarship in tracking down all of the score notes that Mahler provided in his sketches, short scores and long scores, his correspondences with his wife, friends and interpreters, and their comments and observations as well. By piecing all of this research together, relying particularly heavily on Mahler's own notes, Floros has come up with a near-definitive look into Mahler's creative and interpretational processes (a term for such a look based on scholarship that Floros describes as "hermeneutics").

The book's publication date (1985 in the original German) means that it is the beneficiary of a series of events in the 1960's that opened the door to greatly improved accuracy in the study of this complex man and his equally complex music. First was the passage into the public domain of much of Mahler's own private writings, on the 100th anniversary of his birth. Second was the agreement on the part of his widow, Alma Mahler-Werfel, to release other materials, particularly related to his unfinished 10th Symphony, for public scrutiny. Third was the availability of this material to the Englishman Deryck Cooke, and others, who provided performing versions of this final 10th Symphony so that the public at large could better judge the direction in which Mahler had been heading when his work was cut short by premature death. Floros pays great respect to, and provides excellent insight into, the work of Cooke in his (Floros') plan to describe the full symphonic output of Mahler.

This book is very liberally annotated, with briefly-scored examples as reference marks for understanding the interrelationships among the various musical themes, as well as end notes for each symphony and a detailed bibliography for further reading. While it helps to be able to read these brief bars of music, even those who cannot will benefit immensely from Floros' scholarship and fine, but nonetheless dense, writing in providing extramusical background and values for a better understanding of these remarkable symphonies which moves so many of us.

Without question, the single most valuable reference source for a fuller understanding of the Mahler symphonies. And a compact and inexpensive companion for the Mahlerite.

Bob Zeidler
25 internautes sur 28 ont trouvé ce commentaire utile 
5.0 étoiles sur 5 It gave a good background on why each symphony was composed. 5 novembre 1997
Par Un client - Publié sur Amazon.com
The book was translated very well. It broke each symphony down by movement and gave its history, as well as a breif analysis. I definite must for Mahler fans!
24 internautes sur 28 ont trouvé ce commentaire utile 
5.0 étoiles sur 5 Outstanding 1 juin 2000
Par William L. Harwood - Publié sur Amazon.com
If you want to know how a Mahler symphony is put together and why it works, this is the only book that does it. Reading it with a score at hand is useful, but not necessary. Technical but worth it.
6 internautes sur 7 ont trouvé ce commentaire utile 
5.0 étoiles sur 5 A Trustworthy Private Tutor 27 mai 2008
Par Mr John Haueisen - Publié sur Amazon.com
Format:Relié|Achat vérifié
By the time I opened this book I had already read more than a dozen biographies of composer Gustav Mahler. What could this one add?

Well, it surprised me. It lives up to its name: GUSTAV MAHLER: THE SYMPHONIES. What it does is give you a thorough explanation of each Mahler symphony. It tells you things like when it was written, why it was written, how it was written, and suggestions as to "what the music means," which is especially relevant to Mahler's music.

Thus, if I could have only a single book on Mahler, this would be the one I would keep, because it will be my learned, private guide or tutor, to better help me understand--and love even more--each Mahler symphony
12 internautes sur 16 ont trouvé ce commentaire utile 
3.0 étoiles sur 5 Excellent study, but low on Mahler's psychology 5 juillet 2009
Par Linda McDougall - Publié sur Amazon.com
Format:Broché|Achat vérifié
I wish I could be as enthusiastic about this work as the other reviewers, and I might be being picky, but as Mahler has been a constant study and companion to me, I found myself irritated by the more personal observations made by the author.
The musical analyses are beyond reproach - so I won't go there. However,as one cannot separate the soul of Mahler from his music, I wondered why Floros backs them up with some rather inane quotes from Alma's memoirs and historical inaccuracies.

Let me simply deal with the incomplete Tenth Symphony - it's a good example. And I quote from Alma's recollections:"...he was in deepest turmoil...he recognized that he had led the life of a psycopath" - her reason for Mahler's exclamations to her on the score.
As much as I admire Alma Maher, I must,as a psychoanalyst, question her damning use of the word "psychopath", something she knew absolutely nothing about at a time when Freud was tearing his hair out in Vienna because not one of the so-called elite dared to consider a look at their troubled psyches. Mahler was about as far away from a psychopath as Franz Schubert.
The author also attributes his suffering in 1910 as a direct result of the appearance of Walter Gropius on the scene, a "long-time admirer" of Alma. Excuse me, has anyone forgotten that she and Gropius were ardent lovers? And earlier on in the book, Floros states, after quoting lines Mahler wrote about his own fears, that he knew he was on the brink of insanity.

What irks me in this type of amateur psychology is the treatment of a genius as an object to be poked at. This great, sensitive and passionate composer was a person that intellectuals such as this author can never understand...which is why "intellectuals" (and here I use the term in its deeper sense), like Claudio Abbado, don't need to talk about him, except to say the same words he uses for his favorite poet, the "insane" Holderlin:
"They couldn't understand him". Abbado almost becomes Mahler when he conducts his work...his capacity to understand the soul of the man goes way beyond any analysis and superficial psychology.

Deryck Cooke, no matter how fussy he may sound, let his love and compassion for Mahler show through everything he wrote about him. Same with Henry-Louis
de la Grange. For that reason, I really can only recommend this particular book for technical studies of the symphonies.
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