GUSTAV MAHLER DAS LIED VON DER ERDE
Ivonne Fuchs · Markus Schäfer · Linos Ensemble
‘… a veritable and precise knowledge of Modern Music’ (Alban Berg)
As little as it was perceived by the general public during its short existence, in accordance with its genesis, all the more remarkable were the effects and the aftereffects of the Society for Musical Private Performances, founded by Arnold Schoenberg in Mödling near Vienna in November 1918,
especially as it was associated with the intention to keep away unpopular and malicious critics and ‘to give Arnold Schoenberg the opportunity personally to carry out his intention of providing artists and art lovers with a veritable and precise knowledge of Modern Music’, as Alban Berg described in a leaflet in 1919. A speciality of the society concerts was that within the framework of the means available by no means exclusively chamber music, solo pieces and songs were performed, but to a great extent also originally large-scale orchestral works, for which topical, artistically top-quality were produced. Among Mahler’s works, Symphonies Nos. 4, 6 and 7 and the Lieder eines fahrenden Gesellen could be presented this way. In autumn 1921, he embarked on the arrangement of Mahler’s Das Lied von der Erde, which, however, he broke off in the middle of the first movement. The continuation was to be taken over by Webern, but this did not happen, evidently as a consequence of the end of the society. It was only in 1982/83 that the German composer, conductor and musicologist Rainer Riehn (b. 1941) was prepared to continue what had been begun.