Mahler: Songs With Orchestra

San Francisco Symphony

The final installment in the award-winning Mahler Cycle.

Tilson Thomas is completely at home in Mahler's oeuvre, so there really is no discernable difference in the way he handles the orchestra in the songs or the symphonies, and admirers of his work will be impressed with his control and clarity. Graham and Hampson are among the most accomplished singers going, and their warmth and melodic smoothness are wholly appropriate to the gentleness and longing of Mahler's songs.

- Blair Sanderson, AllMusic Review

Here is Mahler the enchanter. The selections from Des Knaben Wunderhorn are the composer’s take on folk tunes, playful and touching. “The Songs of a Wayfarer” (Lieder eines fahrenden Gesellen) tell of young love lost. And the Rückert settings are, in a word, gorgeous. Hear Susan Graham and Thomas Hampson, two of today’s great Mahler singers, as they join Michael Tilson Thomas and the San Francisco Symphony in this final album of the award-winning MTT/SFS Mahler cycle.

“Graham was characteristically poised and radiant. The American mezzo-soprano lent her full, lustrous tone, regal bearing, and keen sensitivity to these uniquely beautiful songs, beginning here with ‘Liebst du um Schönheit’ (If you love because of beauty), conducted with great sensitivity by Tilson Thomas and limned by Graham’s lovely, rounded projection of the text.”
– Georgia Rowe, San Francisco Classical Voice

“Hampson and the orchestra probed the music for all the pity and terror they conveyed…. Hampson’s singing [of the last song] was as robust and mellifluous as ever, and he projected all the bite and tenderness of Mahler’s melodies flawlessly.”
– Joshua Kosman, San Francisco Chronicle

CD Contents:

Lieder eines fahrenden Gesellen
1. Wenn mein Schatz Hochzeit macht
2. Ging heut’ Morgen übers Feld
3. Ich hab’ ein glühend Messer
4. Die zwei blauen Augen

5. Ich atmet’ einen linden Duft
6. Blicke mir nicht in die Lieder
7. Liebst du um Schönheit
8. Um Mitternacht
9. Ich bin der Welt abhanden gekommen

Selections from Des Knaben Wunderhorn
10. Lied des Verfolgten im Turm
11. Der Tamboursg’sell
12. Wo die schönen Trompeten blasen
13. Revelge
14. Urlicht

San Francisco Symphony
Michael Tilson Thomas, conductor
Susan Graham, mezzo-soprano
Thomas Hampson, baritone
Recorded live at Davies Symphony Hall, San Francisco
Rückert-Lieder September 16-20, 2009
Lieder eines fahrenden Gesellen September 23, 25-26, 2009
Selections from Des Knaben Wunderhorn May 10-13, 2007

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