The Embrace Everything podcast series is an exploration and celebration of the music of Gustav Mahler. Throughout his life, Mahler insisted that music had to, literally, embrace everything. This makes his compositions unusually rich in what they offer both audience and musicians. Each season will explore a different Mahler symphony and include interviews with leading conductors, music scholars and musicians. Additionally, Mahler’s own words and those of his contemporaries will be read by actors.
Movement Five – With Wings I’ve Won for Myself
Mahler described the last movement of his Second Symphony, which includes two soloists and a chorus, as a colossal fresco of The Day of Judgement. All of humanity meets its maker, and Mahler stretches his musical wings, soaring to glorious heights.
Movement Four – O Little Red Rose
The fourth movement of Mahler’s Second Symphony is a delicate song for mezzo-soprano and orchestra. It’s a turning point in the symphony, where the protagonist’s spiritual wisdom blossoms.
Movement Three – Never Did a Sermon So Please the Fish
In the summer of 1893, Mahler wrote a song, entitled “St. Anthony of Padua’s Sermon to the Fish.” It turned out so well, he incorporated melodies from it into the third movement of his Second Symphony.
Movement Two – A Sunbeam into Your Soul
For his Second Symphony, Mahler created a second movement he described as a memory, “a ray of sunlight, pure and cloudless, out of the hero’s life.” The music is bittersweet.
Movement One – A Burning Denunciation of the Creator
Mahler’s Second Symphony begins with the funeral for the hero of his First Symphony. The dramatic music rages with sorrow and anger...but also hope, for life after death.
Season 2 – Rise Again - Mahler's Second Symphony
Season 2 focuses on Mahler’s Second Symphony in C minor (1894), delving into Mahler’s gigantic musical exploration of life, death, and what lies beyond. Each episode is devoted to a movement of the symphony. Guests include conductors Kent Nagano and Michael Tilson Thomas; principal musicians of the New York Philharmonic, the Berlin Philharmonic, the Cleveland Orchestra, and the Montreal Symphony Orchestra; and scholars from Columbia and Oxford Universities.
This is the first podcast review I have ever written. This series of elucidation of Mahler’s symphonies makes what was merely enjoyable before, exquisite now.
I hope that Mr. Cohen et al. will continue this work with the rest of Mahler’s symphonies.
And, of course, then there is Bruckner…
I am a composer, and I greatly enjoy Mahler’s music. The context and information they provide has completely reshaped my understand of Mahler’s symphonies!
President of The Gustav Mahler Soc. Of NY
Simply exquisite! An excellent script with interesting musical references and comments by a fine array of scholars and musicians. Although the effort to avoid the comments interfering with the music when in voice-over was most successful, the ardor with which the translations were spoken over the music (especially in the finale) brought tears to my eyes.
Congratulations to Aaron and Marilyn for their excellent work in making this podcasts a considerable success.