Boult Conducts Mahler’s Third Symphony – Testament

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Mahler
Symphony No.3
Kindertotenlieder

Kathleen Ferrier (contralto) [Symphony & Kindertotenlieder]

(Women’s and children’s voices not identified) [Symphony]

BBC Symphony Orchestra
Sir Adrian Boult [Symphony]

Amsterdam Concertgebouw Orchestra
Otto Klemperer [Kindertotenlieder]

Symphony performed on 29 November 1947 in BBC Maida Vale Studios, London; Kindertotenlieder on 12 July 1951 in Concertgebouw, Amsterdam

Also included is an 8-minute interview with Kathleen Ferrier (10 March 1950)


Reviewed by: Colin Anderson

Reviewed: May 2008
CD No: TESTAMENT
SBT2 1422 (2 CDs)
Duration: 2 hours 10 minutes

The heading could just be an April Fool! But here it is, at last, the much-talked-about recording (from Edward Agate’s collection) of the UK premiere of Mahler’s mighty Third Symphony. Yes, Sir Adrian Boult conducts Mahler. Not that strange, really, for Boult had travelled to Amsterdam in 1920 when Willem Mengelberg arranged a Mahler Festival there, and he wrote about the experience for the Daily Telegraph. Furthermore, Boult made a fine recording of Mahler’s First Symphony for Everest and, according to Jon Tolansky’s booklet note, Boult told him that he was a great admirer of Mahler’s music. Yet, for all Boult’s many and varied sympathies (and his willingness to lead all the first performances that he did), he is not associated with Mahler’s music (although he did, it seems, conduct Mahler at the Proms during the 1940s: “Das Lied von der Erde” in 1945 and Symphony No.4 in 1947).

  • Testament
  • Music Preserved

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