- Des Knaben Wunderhorn, song cycle (12) for voice & piano (or orchestra)
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In Riccardo Chailly's skillfully programmed sequence of Mahler's innocence-versus-experience folk treasury, it's the guest artists with a song apiece who really get to the heart of the matter. Sara Fulgoni combines rich tone, youthfulness and deepest sympathy [and] Gösta Winbergh brings to the relatively late mastery of "Revelge" an ideal combination of lyricism and cutting edge.
Most Helpful Customer Reviews
The recorded catalogue of works by Gustav Mahler continues to grow and fortunately so do performances of his works in the concert halls around the world. With so many recordings from which to choose, recommending the 'best' is completely impossible. There is much more leeway when it comes to the symphonies: Mahlerites tend to lean toward the Rattle/ Tilson Thomas/ Salonen/ Boulez school or the Giulini/ Walter/ Bernstein school but even that leaves an inordinate number of successful conductors unmentioned. The Song Cycles of Mahler are less frequently recorded and also they are often recorded in combination with a few of one cycle plus a few from another etc. It is then with rather great clarity that one approaches this recording of DES KNABEN WUNDERHORN, with the urgent and sensitive Riccardo Chailly conducting the magnificent Royal Concertgebouw Orchestra, primarily because of the opportunity to hear the cycle divided among such incredible talents as Matthias Goerne, Barbara Bonney, Sara Fulgoni and Gosta Winbergh. Having just experienced a performance of the cycle by Goerne alone with the Los Angeles Philharmonic, I thought these radiant songs could not be better performed. It will take many hearings of other singers' "Urlicht", whether in this cycle or in the position in the Symphony No 2, to erase the glow of Goerne's interpretation, but sure enough - on this recording that same song is utterly breathtaking as sung by Sara Fulgoni. Goerne and Bonney are in fine fettle, finding the core of each song and communicating the text with ravishing tone and technique. This is one of the finest Mahler recordings available and since the DES KNABEN WUNDERHORN songs play such an important role in the first four symphonies of Mahler, this seminal recording seems essential to all Mahler libraries. Truly a remarkable feat!