Mahler: Symphony No. 8 in E flat major 'Symphony of a Thousand'

This page lists all recordings of Symphony No. 8 in E flat major 'Symphony of a Thousand', by Gustav Mahler (1860-1911) on CD, SACD, DVD, Blu-ray & download (MP3 & FLAC). Generally, more recent releases are listed first, but with priority given to those that are in stock.

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Mahler: Symphony No. 8 (with bonus bluray disc)

Mahler: Symphony No. 8 (with bonus bluray disc)


Mahler:

Symphony No. 8 in E flat major 'Symphony of a Thousand'

with bonus bluray


Christine Brewer, Camilla Nylund, Maria Espada, Stephanie Blythe, Mihoko Fujimura, Robert Dean Smith, Tommi Hakala & Stefan Kocán

Royal Concertgebouw Orchestra, Netherlands Radio Choir, State Choir 'Latvija', Bavarian Radio Choir, National Boys Choir & National Children's Choir, Mariss Jansons

"Try to imagine the whole universe beginning to ring and resound. There are no more human voices, only planets and suns revolving in their orbits," wrote Gustav Mahler to his friend, Willem Mengelberg, on 18 August 1906. The day before, he had completed the sketches of the Eighth Symphony in little more than three weeks, and that after a very hectic season.

The legendary relationship between Gustav Mahler, the Royal Concertgebouw Orchestra and Willem Mengelberg has established a firm tradition of playing Mahler in Amsterdam. During the 1960s the orchestra and Bernard Haitink started recording a Mahler discography that still remains one of the cornerstones of any Mahlerian's collection. Ricccardo Chailly's tenure as chief conductor yielded another brilliant Mahler cycle and now Mariss Jansons is steadily building his tribute to the composer.

Recorded during the same Mahler cycle as the recently released Symphonies Nos. 2 and 3 – part of the full Mahler cycle that the orchestra performed in the 2009-2011 seasons to celebrate the composer's 150th birthday and 100th anniversary of his death - Mariss Jansons's interpretation of the Eight Symphony is one more jewel in the crown of the Royal Concertgebouw Orchestra; with a star-studded cast and excellent choral forces, this 'Symphony of a Thousand' left a lasting impression on the audience.

“Jansons conveys a thrilling sense of occasion” Financial Times, 3rd August 2013

“Jansons keeps the music moving and gives himself something to pull back from in the biggest tuttis...And he has a shining Christine Brewer as his first soprano popping those top Bs and Cs above the stave...up there among the select front-runners.” Gramophone Magazine, September 2013

“It immediately takes the lead among interpretations of this phenomenal work...a reading of the score that is both thrilling and telling in its emotional finesse and sincerity...With the Royal Concertgebouw on supreme form, Jansons unequivocally delivers a performance of cosmic impact.” The Telegraph, 11th July 2013

“The performance has absolutely no weak links. The choral singing, so crucial in this work, is highly disciplined and excellent...The playing of the Royal Concertgebouw Orchestra is superb throughout...the performance is superbly controlled and though Jansons gives the music its head he keeps a very firm grip on things and also displays tremendous attention to detail” MusicWeb International, 22nd July 2013

“Jansons' line up of Wagnerian soloists for this live Concertgebouw Mahler spectacular is possibly the most impressive since Georg Solti's classic 1971 recording...If this still doesn't rise quite to the top of my list of recorded Mahler Eights, it's partly because Jansons doesn't 'do' impetuous from the outset as Mahler asks” BBC Music Magazine, October 2013 ****

GGramophone Magazine

Editor's Choice - September 2013

Super Audio CD

Format:

Hybrid Multi-channel

RCO Live Mariss Jansons Mahler Symphonies - RCO13002

(SACD)

$17.75

In stock - usually despatched within 1 working day.

Hartmut Haenchen conducts Mahler Symphonies Nos. 1 & 8

Hartmut Haenchen conducts Mahler Symphonies Nos. 1 & 8


Mahler:

Symphony No. 1 in D major 'Titan'

Concertgebouw Amsterdam, 20 November 1999 (Live)

Netherlands Philharmonic Orchestra

Symphony No. 8 in E flat major 'Symphony of a Thousand'

Concertgebouw Amsterdam, 10 September 2002 (Live)

Rita Cullis, Angela Maria Blasi, Ofelia Sala (soprano), Reinhild Runkel, Catherine Keen (mezzo-soprano), Glenn Winslade (tenor), John Bröcheler (baritone) & Kurt Rydl (Bass)

National Choir of the Ukraine ‘Dumka’, Ukrainian Radio Choir & Dresden Philharmonic Children’s Choir


Hartmut Haenchen was born in Dresden in 1943. He was awarded first prize at the Carl Maria von Weber Competition in that city in 1971. During the 1972–3 season he made his debut at the Berlin State Opera, directing Mussorgsky’s Boris Godunov. He appeared there regularly until 1986. From 1973 to 1976, Haenchen was conductor of the Dresden Philharmonic and a regular guest with the Dresden State Opera. Subsequently, he began to make regular appearances at Berlin’s Komische Oper.

In 1986, Haenchen became music director of the De Nederlandse Opera (DNO) in Amsterdam and chief conductor of the Netherlands Philharmonic Orchestra (NPO). His Ring cycle in Amsterdam was an outstanding success and will be revived in 2012–14. He has collaborated with La Scala, Milan, the Royal Opera House, Covent Garden and the Opéra National de Paris, and performed with orchestras throughout the world including the Berlin Philharmonic and Concertgebouw. Projects have included a Mahler cycle with the Orchestre du Théâtre Royal de la Monnaie. In October 2008 he was awarded the Federal Cross of Merit of the Republic of Germany, in recognition of his outstanding contribution to music and the arts.

These recordings of Mahler’s Symphony No.1 and the massive Symphony No.8 are being released on ICA’s ‘Live’ artist series to commemorate Hartmut Haenchen’s seventieth birthday. Any recording of Mahler’s ‘Symphony of a Thousand’ is a major and rare event and this live performance in the Concertgebouw in Amsterdam, a venue closely associated with Mahler, is no exception. The superb digital recording captures the stupendous sound of both symphonies and in particular the huge forces employed and wide dynamic range that Mahler demands in Symphony No.8.

Haenchen’s recent live Mahler Symphony No.6 can be seen on DVD (ICAD5018): the disc won a prestigious Diapason d’or award.

ica classics Live - ICAC5094

(CD - 2 discs)

$24.00

(also available to download from $16.00)

In stock - usually despatched within 1 working day.

Mahler: Symphony No. 8 in E flat major 'Symphony of a Thousand'

Mahler: Symphony No. 8 in E flat major 'Symphony of a Thousand'

Live from Caracas


Manuela Uhl, Julianna Di Giacomo and Kiera Duffy (sopranos), Anna Larsson and Charlotte Hellekant (contraltos), Burkhard Fritz (tenor), Brian Mulligan (baritone), Alexander Vinogradov (bass)

Simon Bolivar Symphony Orchestra of Venezuela & Los Angeles Philharmonic, Gustavo Dudamel

This could well be the most ambitious recording of any Mahler symphony ever and a once-in-a-generation classical event and an unforgettable night for the city of Caracas.

This truly unique account of Mahler’s most extraordinary symphony is part of Gustavo Dudamel's planned Mahler cycle, this time featuring BOTH orchestras with which he is most closely associated - the Los Angeles Philharmonic and the Simon Bolivar Symphony Orchestra of Venezuela, who have both played acclaimed Mahler concerts with Maestro Dudamel in the US and in Venezuela. The performance also features an immense vocal force including a massed choir of young Venezuelan voices and a line-up of international soloists.

The performance was seen in hundreds of theaters in the United States and Canada, as well as those in Brazil, Colombia and Argentina. In Venezuela, it aired on the state television channel, Tves, to mass audiences.

This special DVD and Blu-Ray will be released to coincide with the Opening Concert of the Los Angeles Philharmonic Orchestra season in September 2012.

Extra Material: 17 minutes documentary on the DVD and Blu-Ray which gives a unique insight into this world-beating Mahler recording.

STEREO: PCM / SURROUND: DTS 5.1

Picture Format: 16:9 · Filmed in High Definition

Subtitles: Latin, German, English, French, Spanish, Chinese

“an excellent rendition of Mahler’s Eighth Symphony...featuring a fine partnership of orchestras and a variable lineup of soloists...Of particular note is the huge choir, which included some 1,200 children from Venezuela’s remarkable system of youth choruses.” New York Times, 23rd November 2012

“This Symphony of much more than a thousand...maximises the advantages of group spirit and minimises the problems of monstrosity. The beginning, middle and end of Mahler's first movement hymn to the creator spirit blaze with unsurpassable, open-toned fervour...I guess it's the fervent-toned Simon Bolivar strings who bring true intensity to the tremolos and heart to the soarings.” BBC Music Magazine, March 2013 ****

BBC Music Magazine

DVD Choice - March 2013

DVD Video

Region: 0

Format: NTSC

DVDs and Blu-rays - up to 50% off

DG - 0734884

(DVD Video)

Normally: $21.00

Special: $14.70

In stock - usually despatched within 1 working day.

Mahler: Symphony No. 8 in E flat major 'Symphony of a Thousand'

Mahler: Symphony No. 8 in E flat major 'Symphony of a Thousand'

Live from Caracas


This could well be the most ambitious recording of any Mahler symphony ever and a once-in-a-generation classical event and an unforgettable night for the city of Caracas.

This truly unique account of Mahler’s most extraordinary symphony is part of Gustavo Dudamel's planned Mahler cycle, this time featuring BOTH orchestras with which he is most closely associated - the Los Angeles Philharmonic and the Simon Bolivar Symphony Orchestra of Venezuela, who have both played acclaimed Mahler concerts with Maestro Dudamel in the US and in Venezuela. The performance also features an immense vocal force including a massed choir of young Venezuelan voices and a line-up of international soloists.

The performance was seen in hundreds of theaters in the United States and Canada, as well as those in Brazil, Colombia and Argentina. In Venezuela, it aired on the state television channel, Tves, to mass audiences.

This special DVD and Blu-Ray will be released to coincide with the Opening Concert of the Los Angeles Philharmonic Orchestra season in September 2012.

Extra Material: 17 minutes documentary on the DVD and Blu-Ray which gives a unique insight into this world-beating Mahler recording.

“It's difficult to overstate the magnitude here...Dudamel's charisma, supremely necessary in unifying his onstage forces, also proves photogenic...Rarely has a chorus come off so perfectly balanced, even in the softest sections...Dudamel's concept of Mahler has deepened noticeably since his initial Fifth with the Simon Bolivar Youth Orchestra.” Gramophone Magazine, January 2013

Blu-ray Disc

Region: all

DVDs and Blu-rays - up to 50% off

DG - 0734890

(Blu-ray)

Normally: $27.00

Special: $17.55

In stock - usually despatched within 1 working day.

Mahler: Symphony No. 8 in E flat major 'Symphony of a Thousand'

Mahler: Symphony No. 8 in E flat major 'Symphony of a Thousand'


Christine Brewer (soprano), Soile Isokoski (soprano), Juliane Banse (mezzo-soprano), Birgit Remmert (mezzo-soprano), Jane Henschel (mezzo-soprano), Jon Villars (tenor), David Wilson-Johnson (baritone) & John Relyea (bass)

Toronto Children’s Chorus, City of Birmingham Symphony Youth Chorus, London Symphony Chorus, City Of Birmingham Symphony Chorus & City Of Birmingham Symphony Orchestra, Sir Simon Rattle

EMI Masters - 6230762

(CD)

$10.75

In stock - usually despatched within 1 working day.

Mahler: Symphony No. 8 in E flat major 'Symphony of a Thousand'

Mahler: Symphony No. 8 in E flat major 'Symphony of a Thousand'


Melanie Diener (soprano), Juliane Banse (soprano), Lisa Larsson (soprano), Yvonne Naef (alto), Birgit Remmert (alto), Anthony Dean Griffey (tenor), Stephen Powell (baritone), Askar Abdrazakov (bass), Alfred Muff (bass)

Tonhalle Orchestra Zurich, David Zinman

RCA - 88697672942

(CD - 2 discs)

$10.25

In stock - usually despatched within 1 working day.

Mahler: Symphony No. 8 in E flat major 'Symphony of a Thousand'

Mahler: Symphony No. 8 in E flat major 'Symphony of a Thousand'


Sylvia Greenberg, Lynne Dawson, Sally Matthews (soprano), Sophie Koch, Elena Manistana (altos) & Robert Gambill (tenor)

Deutscher Rundfunk Berlin & Deutsches Symphonie-Orchester Berlin, Kent Nagano

“Nagano is blessed with a superb orchestra and choruses all on top form (the richness of sound in the hushed 'Alles Vergangliche', complete with subterranean basses, is wonderful)” Daily Telegraph, 18 March 2005

“probably the best we have.” Rob Cowan, The Independent

“majestic performance under Kent Nagano, with superb soloists including sopranos Sylvia Greenberg, Lynne Dawson and Sally Matthews, altos Sophie Koch and Elena Manistana and tenor Robert Gambill. Mahler's masterwork emerges in all its rococo splendour, his rich orchestral textures and bold vocal writing adding up to a secular mass for our times.” The Observer, 6 March 2005

Harmonia Mundi - HMGold - HMG501858/59

(CD - 2 discs)

$15.25

In stock - usually despatched within 1 working day.

Mahler: Symphony No. 8 in E flat major 'Symphony of a Thousand'

Mahler: Symphony No. 8 in E flat major 'Symphony of a Thousand'

Recorded live at Southbank Centre’s Royal Festival Hall, London, on 21 January 1991


Júlia Várady, Jane Eaglen, Susan Bullock (sopranos), Trudeliese Schmidt, Jadwiga Rappé (mezzo soprano), Kenneth Riegel (tenor), Eike Wilm Schulte (baritone) & Hans Sotin (bass)

London Philharmonic Orchestra and Choir, London Symphony Chorus & Eton College Boys’ Choir, Klaus Tennstedt

Popularly known as the ‘Symphony of a Thousand’, in this live recording of Mahler’s Symphony No. 8 from 1991, over 528 singers and musicians are led in a vibrant, life-affirming performance by one of the greatest interpreters of Mahler’s music, Klaus Tennstedt.

The soloist line-up includes some of the most celebrated operatic singers of the twentieth century including sopranos Júlia Várady and Susan Bullock and American tenor Kenneth Riegel.

This double disc CD features the combined choral forces of the London Philharmonic Choir and the London Symphony Chorus as well as 50 boys from Eton College Boys’ Choir.

‘It was an inspired a Mahler performance as Tennstedt has ever conducted, with an inevitability, a sense of spiritual grandeur and adventure, that renewed all one’s youthful faith in a work which one feared might have lost its power, thrill and surprise for ever’. Daily Telegraph on the recorded live performance of Mahler Symphony No. 8 in 1991.

“There have been more refined, and more shapely accounts of this gargantuan work put on disc, but few with the sense of excitement and physicality that this one generates. From the first moments of the opening Veni Creator Spiritus hymn, to the final orchestral outburst...Tennstedt maintains the performance on a knife-edge of excitement” The Guardian, 3rd March 2011

“Even in the hour-long second movement, Tennstedt sustains such a high level of concentration and intensity that the attention is riveted throughout, culminating in a ecstatic peroration that overwhelms the senses...[His] probing energy and profound wisdom prove a winning combination in this epic trailblazer.” Classic FM Magazine, May 2011 ****

“As always, Tennstedt gives an impression of living by the skin of his teeth, but with a flexibility and freedom of expression that consistently draw sustenance from roots of the music...The whole opening hymn blazes with urgency...every performer's possession by the music is never in doubt...the exhilaration and spiritual reach of the performance are immense.” International Record Review, April 2011

GGramophone Awards 2011

Shortlisted - Orchestral

GGramophone Magazine

Editor's Choice - June 2011

LPO - LPO0052

(CD - 2 discs)

$15.50

(also available to download from $20.00)

In stock - usually despatched within 1 working day.

Mahler: Symphony No. 8 in E flat major 'Symphony of a Thousand'

Mahler: Symphony No. 8 in E flat major 'Symphony of a Thousand'


Melanie Diener, Julianne Banse, Lisa Larsson (sopranos), Yvonne Naef, Birgit Remmert (mezzos), Anthony Dean Griffey (tenor), Stephen Powell (baritone), Askar Abdrazakov (bass)

Tonhalle Orchestra Zurich, Schweizer Chamber Choir, WDR Rundfunkchor Köln, David Zinman

Having completed several cycles, among them the complete Beethoven symphonies (with over 1 million copies sold internationally), the orchestral works of Richard Strauss and Schumann, in 2007 David Zinman embarked on this recording of Mahler’s complete symphonies with Tonhalle Orchestra Zurich. This is the eighth release, with each issue being released in numerical order, and the cycle will be completed later in 2010. The initial release is in SACD format, once stocks run out this will be replaced by the standard CD version (catalogue number 88697672942) The New York born David Zinman has recorded these works twice before, and feels that the time he has spent with them has allowed his understanding of them to broaden: “Mahler has been with me for over 40 years. I have much more insight into his work now than I used to have. You should not only follow your ego in interpreting him. It’s about discovering what exactly is written in the score. We all grow in our knowledge, as a human being, and I am sure I will still discover new things until my death.”

“Zinman's Mahler never peaks too soon, never shows all its emotional cards too early, that that confidence to keep something in reserve as long as possible pays dividends in the second part...Both solo and choral singing are consistently good...but it's the measured, musical nous of Zinman's conducting that really deserves the spotlight.” The Guardian, 22nd April 2010 ****

“the intensity and beauty of the string sound in the long orchestral introduction to Part II is vintage Mahler in Zinman’s loving, but never self-indulgent, hands... it’s clear he remains one of the world’s most inquiring senior maestros, looking for fresh perspectives. In his Mahler cycle, he has certainly found those.” Sunday Times, 25th April 2010

“It sounds tall, wide and handsome in that wonderfully open Zinman way, and in the central development section he and his engineers ensure that we hear right into the texture, our ears led on by every strand of counterpoint.” Gramophone Magazine, July 2010

Building a Library

Featured - May 2010

Super Audio CD

Format:

Hybrid Multi-channel

RCA Zinman Mahler Symphonies - 88697579262

(SACD - 2 discs)

$19.25

In stock - usually despatched within 1 working day.

Mahler: Symphony No. 8 in E flat major 'Symphony of a Thousand'

Mahler: Symphony No. 8 in E flat major 'Symphony of a Thousand'

Recorded at St Paul's Cathedral last July, this is the sixth title in Gergiev's mighty Mahler cycle.


Viktoria Yastrebova, Ailish Tynan, Ludmila Dudinova (sopranos), Lilli Paasikivi, Zlata Bulycheva (mezzo-sopranos), Alexey Markov (baritone), Sergey Semishkur (tenor) & Evgeny Nikitin (bass)

Choir of Eltham College, Choral Arts Society of Washington, London Symphony Chorus & London Symphony Orchestra, Valery Gergiev

CONCERT REVIEW:

"two performances bringing Gergiev's Mahler cycle to a triumphant close. Gergiev caught the crucial moment of expectation to perfection. But in the end it was the shattering power of several hundred voices, an expanded orchestra and full cathedral organ that delivered the mightiest of Mahler's symphonies with the sonic splendour it demands." London Evening Standard

“As a concert venue St Paul's Cathedral's problems remain acute: chief culprit is the building's notorious nine-second reverberation period which gives climaxes earth-shattering power but reduces inner detail to mush.
In these circumstances the conductor's role is mainly one of damage limitation. Not that Gergiev chooses sluggish tempi to palliate the acoustics. Indeed he tends to plough on as precipitately as ever at section ends. Not for him the grand but apocryphal slowing into the first movement recapitulation as favoured by Bern- stein et al. Some exaggerated enunciation by the far-flung choral groups is presumably designed to maximise audibility. Meanwhile most of the soloists proffer Mariinsky German in vaguely Verdian style and the ladies aren't always in tune. James Mallinson and his sound team do their best with the microphones, ensuring that unique moments such as the stratospheric apparition of the Mater Gloriosa are captured for posterity. There's a more than usually sweettoned sentimentality about much of Part 2.
Belying the thrills and spills of an event in which many of the performers will have been unable to hear each other or catch much more than a glimpse of their maestro, the final Chorus Mysticus brings a real sense of gravitas and uplift. The massed voices are wonderfully hushed at the start even if the offstage trumpets register less impressively at the close (everyone sounds offstage at St Paul's). Whether this is a tribute to Gergiev's sense of the dramatic, the professionalism of his assembled artistes or sheer good luck is difficult to tell.
Shorn of applause, the reading is neatly accommodated on a single hybrid SACD and makes an appropriately idiosyncratic climax to a controversial cycle. The packaging, quite sumptuous for a bargain issue, has full texts and translations.”
Gramophone Classical Music Guide, 2010

“at once the most ambitious and the most impressive in Gergiev's variable Mahler series...The atmosphere of a great occasion is caught admirably, with the timpani and organ very impressive...A most competitive version.” Penguin Guide, 2010 ***

Super Audio CD

Format:

Hybrid Multi-channel

LSO Live Gergiev Mahler Symphonies - LSO0669

(SACD)

$11.75

(also available to download from $10.00)

In stock - usually despatched within 1 working day.

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