Celebrating 25 Years of Excellence

Mahler Pioneers



SOMM Recordings announces Mahler Pioneers, a major addition to the Mahler catalogue with first commercial releases of historic performances of Das klagende Lied, Symphony No.4, and the Adagio from the Tenth Symphony.

This two-disc set also features interviews with the legendary conductor Leopold Stokowski and former New York Philharmonic Orchestra timpanist Alfred Friese about their memories of Mahler in rehearsal.

Recorded live in London’s Royal Festival Hall on 13 May 1956, Das klagende Lied is heard in its first-ever British performance with Walter Goehr conducting the London Symphony Orchestra, Goldsmiths’ Choral Union and three luxury soloists; soprano Joan Sutherland – most probably the only known document of her singing Mahler – tenor Peter Pears, and contralto Norma Procter.

Symphony No.4 was performed by Goehr, again with the LSO, and soprano Teresa Stich-Randall on 9 February 1960 as part of that year’s Mahler centenary celebrations. Before the year was out, the committed Mahlerian Goehr was dead. The Tenth Symphony’s Adagio dates from 21 November 1948, with Hermann Scherchen conducting the BBC Symphony Orchestra, anticipating Scherchen’s recorded survey of Mahler’s symphony in the 1950s.

Two revealing, never before issued interviews with Stokowski in 1970 and Friese in 1962, offer candid recollections of encounters with Mahler. Mahler Pioneers has been curated by historic recordings specialist Jon Tolansky, who also provides insightful and authoritative booklet notes.

SOMM’s reputation for historic recordings is unmatched, its four-volume Vaughan Williams Live series (ARIADNE 501650185019-25020), Beecham Conducts Sibelius (5013) and R. Strauss (5021) garnering widespread acclaim.

Previous Mahler recordings on SOMM include Das Lied von der Erde with Kathleen Ferrier, and the New York Philharmonic conducted by Bruno Walter (ARIADNE 5007), and Das Lied von der Erde and Lieder eines fahrenden Gesallen with the Orchestra of the Swan (SOMMCD 0109).

On This Recording

Das klagende Lied bcdeg
  1. I. Del Spielmann
  2. II. Hochzeitsstück
  1. Adagio from Symphony No.10 f
  2. Interview: Leopold Stokowski
Symphony No.4 in G major ag
  1. I. Bedächtig, nicht eilen
  2. II. In gemächlicher Bewegung, ohne Hast
  3. III. Ruhevoll, poco adagio
  4. IV. Sehr behaglich
  5. Interview: Alfred Friese

aTeresa Stich-Randall, soprano
bJoan Sutherlandb soprano
cNorma Procterc contralto
dPeter Pearsd tenor
eGoldsmiths Choral Union
fBBC Symphony Orchestra, Hermann Scherchen conductor
gLondon Symphony Orchestra, Walter Goehr conductor