Mahler’s 4th.

On this CD, Trevor Pinnock, conducts the Royal Academy of Music Ensemble in two  interesting chamber arrangements: Mahler’s most frequently performed symphony, the 4th, and Debussy’s ‘Prelude a l’apres midi d’un faune’.


  • Prélude à l’après-midi d’un faune


  • Symphony No. 4 in G major

Performed in the Chamber arrangement by Erwin Stein, with Sonia Grane (soprano)

And supported by the Royal Academy of Music Ensemble, conducted by Trevor Pinnock

Arranged for Schoenberg’s 1918 Society for Private Musical Performances, these arrangements were designed to highlight the fresh perspective that a stripped-back orchestration could offer the listener.

With this recording, Trevor and the Academy launched a series of performances and recordings which are retrospectively reigniting Schoenberg’s vision of performing chamber reductions of symphonic repertoire, including newly commissioned arrangements for this series.

Erwin Stein’s visionary transformation of Mahler’s 4th symphony is for fifteen players and soprano (Sonia Grane). A Mahler symphony of more modest proportions, it lends itself perfectly to a chamber arrangement.

Benno Sachs’ re-orchestration of Prelude a l’apres-midi d’un faune retains many of the sounds of Debussy’s original, using the span of the piano to fill out gaps in the texture, and the harmonium to sustain missing parts in the winds, additions which add much interest and afford a new coherence and sensuality to the melodic line.

Trevor Pinnock is known worldwide as a harpsichordist and conductor who pioneered performance on historical instruments with his own orchestra, The English Concert.

The Financial Timeswrote in July, 2013:

“… Under Pinnock, the Royal Academy of Music’s Chamber Ensemble bring to the surface the lithe counterpoint that usually lumbers under thicker string textures.”
“this recording shows [Pinnock] to be well acquainted and at ease with the demands of Mahler’s Fourth…both [performances] capture a simplicity of timbre and coloring that goes to the essence of the music…What they miss in fullness of sound, they gain in transparency and up-tempo crispness”

Here is the Piano Quartet in A Minor composed by Gustav Mahler and performed by Prazak Quartet.

And here is the full orchestra version of Mahler’s 4th symphony, in a beautiful performance directed by Claudio Abbado:


Tags: Gustav Mahler, Trevor Pinnock, Symphony #4