Andris Nelsons conducts Mahler’s Second Symphony

On December 13, 14 & 15, Andris Nelsons conducts the Berliner Philharmoniker and MDR Rundfunkchor Leipzig in Mahler’s all-encompassing Second Symphony (Resurrection Symphony). The five-movement work that joins together a variety of genres – symphony, tone poem, symphonic cantata – features soprano Lucy Crowe and contralto Gerhild Romberger as soloists. Nelsons, an avid fan of Mahler’s music since an early age, said of the composer:

“This music speaks so closely to me. There is everything in his music, from naive childishness to the greatest catastrophe, in his symphonies is a whole world.”

Beginning the evening’s program is Maija Einfelde’s Lux aeterna, for mixed chorus, chime bells and vibraphone. Earlier this season, Einfelde’s piece premiered in concert with Nelsons and the Boston Symphony Orchestra, led by the Tanglewood Festival Chorus’s director James Burton. Critics said of the performance:

“One of two pieces Nelsons is programming to celebrate the centennial of the formation of the Republic of Latvia, Lux aeterna is marked by the contrapuntal layering and repetition of a short text from the Requiem Mass in which the celebrant beseeches a merciful God to grant eternal rest to the departed and “let perpetual light shine upon them”. With undulating melodies and varying textures, Einfelde creates a form of plainchant which sounds both contemporary and traditional.” (Bachtrack)

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