General Category => Gustav Mahler and Related Discussions => Topic started by: barry guerrero on September 02, 2011, 02:17:48 AM

Title: timings for Dorati/IPO M6 coming out on Helicon
Post by: barry guerrero on September 02, 2011, 02:17:48 AM
Harmonia Mundi will be releasing an Antal Dorati/Israel Phil. Mahler 6 on the Helicon label. I believe that the performance is from around 1965, but it's in mono. The timings are I - 17:54 (obviously, no expo. repeat); II (scherzo) - 12:21; III (andante) - 13:27; IV - 27:25. Interesting, eh?

I'm pretty sure that it's coming out on Tuesday 09/13.
Title: Re: timings for Dorati/IPO M6 coming out on Helicon
Post by: chalkpie on September 02, 2011, 04:06:02 AM
A mono Mahler recording? Can't see the point honestly - I'll save my scratch for other muzac and maybe some tequila  ;)
Title: Re: timings for Dorati/IPO M6 coming out on Helicon
Post by: James Meckley on September 02, 2011, 04:08:25 AM
I just listened to this release thanks to a friend on another continent (apparently it's already available directly from Harmonia Mundi). It was recorded in Mann Auditorium, Tel-Aviv, on 27 October 1963. It is indeed a mono recording, but the sound isn't bad at all. There seems to be a spot mic on the timpani, which makes the rolls leading into the first two hammer blows (there are three total) quite impressive. Blow #1 is especially powerful. Bass drum and low brass also seem "spotlit." Occasional horn clams, though nothing really embarrassing. No applause or "bravos" at the end, thankfully.

I have an air check of a Dorati/Philadelphia Mahler 6 from 1975 which is about six minutes longer overall (no first movement repeat, two hammer blows, also Scherzo–Andante).

Title: Re: timings for Dorati/IPO M6 coming out on Helicon
Post by: waderice on September 02, 2011, 01:09:01 PM
To ignore what potentially can be an excellent performance recorded in mono sound (regardless of the composer, the work, and how good or bad the quality is of the recorded mono sound) is to "throw the baby out with the bath water".  Unfortunately, I used to be that way, but as I became more experienced as a listener, I eventually learned to overlook the sound type and quality (unless deterioration in the recorded source really got in the way of enjoying the performance).  What happened is that the more performances I listened to of a given work, I "learned" the work to have enough familiarity with it, i.e., knowing it by heart, and how it should "go".  Additionally, to ignore performances of Mahler originally recorded in mono sound is to deprive oneself as a Mahler student of the enormous efforts and sacrifices that the early Mahler conductors made to bring what was an unfamiliar composer to the attention of then-uncaring audiences.  We should all thank our lucky stars for these efforts; otherwise we wouldn't have the polished, knowledgeable  performances of Mahler we have today, where listeners can critique this and that performance of a given work of Mahler, similar to what listeners do of the Beethoven symphonies that have enjoyed this status for many years.

James, I heard Dorati do the M6 live here in Washington back in the mid-1970's.  As I recall, it was one of Dorati's finest performances I ever heard.

Title: Re: timings for Dorati/IPO M6 coming out on Helicon
Post by: chalkpie on September 02, 2011, 02:30:59 PM
Wade - I certainly appreciate your point of view, however I have no shame in admitting that sonics are part of the "pie" for me in enjoying Mahler. There are SO many incredible sounding recordings these days that even if a performance is legendary, it is still lacking something substantial in my book. Even the Bernstein Sony recordings show their age and wear for me, and as much as I enjoy what LB brought to the music during that era, the sonics are a bit tough to handle after hearing modern recordings, and I don't see myself grabbing for those very often as a result. I'm talking about the trombone/timp lightning bolt strikes at the beginning of M3, or the delicate harp glissando into the moonlight episode in becomes more beautiful, powerful, and convincing in stellar sound. This is not just isolated with Mahler for me - it also applies to many modern composers I enjoy such as Ligeti, Bartok, Stravinsky, Messiaen, Ravel, etc. The textures reveal themselves better in glorious sound, simple as that.

It's great that these more historical recordings are seeing the light of day, and there is certainly a market for them, but for the most part I'm not gonna spend my coin on those, as i would rather invest in other music that I don't currently own.

Title: Re: timings for Dorati/IPO M6 coming out on Helicon
Post by: waderice on September 02, 2011, 03:58:58 PM
chalkpie - Yes, we are all entitled to our own view.  But I eventually learned from other veteran classical music listeners with more experience than I that stereo analog or digital sound isn't a primary object in listening to Mahler or classical music in general.  As I said, I used to be of the same thinking as you, that optimum sound in a performance is important, and I eventually started finding out (with additional prodding from my veteran listener friends) that the overall performance was important, not the sound.  I've listened to classical music for 40+ years.  It wasn't until the last 15 or so that I started learning that it is the performance and the conductor's concept of the work that take precedence over the sound of the recording.  Yes, a single-miked mono concert recording performance of Mahler may not capture the quiet nuances or thunderous drum rolls you enjoy hearing.  But I'm now willing to overlook those and aim for the conductor's conception of the work.  I'm sure that with more experience, you will eventually learn how you feel a given work should go, and come around to this way of thinking, realizing that those two criteria are what make for the optimum musical experience.  You may not realize it now, but I'm sure you eventually will, as I did.  Bottom line, yes, stereo and digital sound help in the enjoyment of the musical experience, but they are not the sole reason to avoid a historic performance originally recorded monaurally.  Also, I've found out that within recent years (about 20) that so many recorded performances of the same work (and it doesn't have to be Mahler) are starting to sound much the same, with little or no new light shed on a popular concert piece.  In fact, these seemed to be a hideous competition with one another that they actually detract from the listening experience, not enhance it.  It was a marketing ploy for Decca, EMI, DG, Philips, et. al., to try to gain the upper hand in the "sweepstakes" for say, the Tchaikovsky Pathetique Symphony.  And as I hate to say it, it seems nowadays to be the same way with Mahler.  But I'm trying to maintain a balanced view, and not allow myself to get caught up in all this because of being on a retirement pension.

Title: Re: timings for Dorati/IPO M6 coming out on Helicon
Post by: barry guerrero on September 02, 2011, 04:22:53 PM
"short of being a professional musician, such as Barry Guerrero"

Over this last year, I played all of four Oktoberfest gigs. I got paid relatively very well for them though   8)