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CSO Resound - Mahler: Symphony No. 6

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Deseret News Review of Haitink's Mahler Symphony No. 6

One of today's foremost conductors, Bernard Haitink is also one of the last of a kind — a thoughtful, intelligent conductor who knows the repertoire intimately. He doesn't go for the obvious, like so many conductors today. Instead, he explores the score to find all its subtleties and nuances and, in the process, captures the composer's intentions brilliantly. A performance with Haitink at the helm is like an expedition of discovery. At its most successful, it's a revelatory experience, as if one is hearing the music for the first time.

On his most recent recording with the Chicago Symphony of Mahler's Sixth Symphony, the experience isn't quite like that, but it is still a wondrous journey, and one of the most perceptive readings of the Sixth around. Haitink's perusal of the work isn't the most dramatic — there are many recordings available in which the conductors emphasize the work's drama. Rather, Haitink's interpretation revels in the nuances and subtleties to be found in the music that are so often overlooked.

Haitink's tempos tend to be leisurely and sometimes surprisingly slow (as in the middle section of the scherzo). But his choice of tempos allows him to bring out the glorious instrumental colors that Mahler creates in this symphony.

The Chicago Symphony plays wonderfully under Haitink's direction. The playing is dynamic, articulate and compellingly expressive. Haitink, who has been Chicago's principal conductor since 2006 but has been associated with the orchestra for more than 30 years, knows how to get what he wants from his musical forces. And the result is a recording that is a must have for anyone who loves Mahler's music.

- Edward Reichel, Deseret News, August 10, 2008




Born: March 4, 1929 in Amsterdam, The Netherlands

Genre: Classical

Years Active: '50s, '60s, '70s, '80s, '90s, '00s

Bernard Johann Herman Haitink built a reputation as one of the finest conductors of the 20th Century with a wide repertory and meticulous yet warm and exciting performances. He studied violin at Amsterdam Conservatory, and began his musical career as a violinist in the Netherlands Radio Philharmonic. He took conducting studies with Felix Hupka when he was at conservatory and then two Netherlands Radio Union conducting courses with Ferdinand Leitner. He was named second conductor with the Radio Union,...
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CSO Resound - Mahler: Symphony No. 6, Bernard Haitink
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  • $9.99
  • Genres: Classical, Music
  • Released: Nov 17, 2009

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