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Jane Henschel (mezzo-soprano)
Gregory Kunde (tenor)
Hans Graf, conductor
In 1907 Mahler suffered a series of severe losses. Following pressure, he resigned his position as Director of the Court Opera in Vienna. After his elder daughter Maria died, he himself received the diagnosis of a severe heart condition. During the summer of 1908, Mahler sketched Das Lied von der Erde (The Song of the Earth), a ‘symphony for two vocal soloists and orchestra’. The texts, taken from Hans Bethge’s The Chinese Flute, are concerned with the themes of transience and loss, culminating in the overwhelming Der Abschied (The Farewell). The Houston Symphony and Hans Graf have recorded Zemlinsky and Berg on Naxos 8572048; ‘tonally sumptuous and emotionally expansive’. (Allmusic.com)
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