Gustav Mahler | Artist

Gustav Mahler | Artist

Tags: Era_1800s, Genre_Classical, Origin_Austria, Type_Artist

Gustav Mahler was an Austro-Bohemian Romantic composer born 1860 in Bohemia. He was one of the leading conductors of his generation and as a composer acted as a bridge between the 19th-century Austro-German tradition and the modernism of the early 20th century. In his lifetime his status as a conductor was established beyond question, but his own music only gained wide popularity after periods of relative neglect, which included a ban on its performance in much of Europe during the Nazi era. After 1945 his compositions were rediscovered by a new generation of listeners; Mahler then became one of the most frequently performed and recorded of all composers, a position he has sustained into the 21st century. Born to Jewish parents of humble origins, the German speaking Mahler displayed his musical gifts at an early age. After graduating from the Vienna Conservatory in 1878, he held a succession of conducting posts of rising importance in the opera houses of Europe, culminating in his appointment in 1897 as director of the Vienna Court Opera. During his years in Vienna, Mahler experienced regular opposition and hostility from the anti-semitic press. Nevertheless, his innovative productions and insistence on the highest performance standards ensured his reputation as one of the greatest of opera conductors, particularly as an interpreter of the works of Wagner, Mozart and Tchaikovsky. Late in his life he was briefly director of New York's Metropolitan Opera and the New York Philharmonic. Of his compositions, the most widely recognised are the ten large-scale Symphonies (the final 10th incomplete at the time of his death) and his song-cycles such as Kindertotenlieder (Songs on the Death of Children) and Das Lied von der Erde (Songs of the Earth). Mahler was from the "late Romantic" era of music, part of an ideal that placed Austro-German classical music on a higher plane than other types, through its supposed possession of particular spiritual and philosophical significance. He was one of the last major composers of a line which includes Beethoven, Schubert, Liszt, Wagner, Bruckner and Brahms. After many years of failing health, Mahler died on the 18th of May 1911 in Vienna after returning from a gruelling series of concert engagements in New York City, and in the midst of finishing his 10th Symphony. Attending his funeral were Arnold Schoenberg (whose wreath described Mahler as "the holy Gustav Mahler"), Bruno Walter, Alfred Roller, the painter Gustav Klimt, and representatives from many of the great European opera houses. Alma Mahler, who remarried the architect Walter Gropius, survived her husband by more than 50 years, dying in 1964. The composer's daughter Anna Mahler became a well-known sculptor; she died in 1988. After half a century of neglect, Mahler's music was revived by the passionate advocacy of composers and conductors such as Aaron Copeland and Leonard Bernstein. In the years following his centenary in 1960, Mahler rapidly became one of the most performed and most recorded of all composers, and has largely remained thus.

Artist Website: wikipedia/Gustav_Mahler

Featured Albums: Gustav Mahler

Related Artists: Leonard Bernstein

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