Gustav Mahler’s death

Mahler’s grave

Gustav Mahler died on May 18, 1911. A few months earlier he gave his very last concert as Music director of the New York Philharmonic Orchestra. He had left Vienna and moved to New York after many years of wide-spread criticism of his work as a composer. He headed for New York, where he was wanted, rather than being constantly hounded about his Jewish origins.

Mahler had converted to Catholicism years earlier, when he was trying to obtain the position as the head of the Imperial Opera Company in Vienna; and… he was ultimately successful in his quest. As such, Gustav Mahler was not only the conductor of the Vienna Opera, but also of the Vienna Philharmonic Orchestra; the reason is simple: The Opera orchestra members were also members of the VPO.

As such, 2011 is the 100th anniversary of Gustav Mahler’s death. And throughout the world millions of people for whom Mahler’s music has been so deeply meaningful take some time to remember this amazingly creative man.

Here are some members of the New York Philharmonic Orchestra, paying their respects at Mahler’s grave this week, 100 years after his death. After all, he was the conductor of their orchestra years earlier, and they regularly perform his music now:

And here is Leonard Bernstein conducting the ending of Mahler’s 2nd symphony:

May Gustav Mahler rest in Peace…

Tags: Gustav Mahler, May 18, 2011, May 18, 1911, Vienna Philharmonic, New York Philharmonic

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