It is the greatest I have ever composed, wrote Gustav
Mahler after completing his Eighth Symphony. This
remark did not only refer to the gigantic forces of
singers and instrumentalists required by the score,
but also to the idea that is conveyed in sound. By
contrasting the Whitsuntide hymn “Veni creator
spiritus” with the closing scene from Goethe’s “Faust
II”, Mahler expresses the close spiritual relationship
between art and religion: the reconciliation with the
idea of spiritual love.
This CD is a live recording of a concert on March 27,
2010 that was performed in the Vienna Konzerthaus.
It is particularly attractive due to the outstanding
group of soloists, which includes Johan Botha, Jane
Henschel and Kwangchoul Youn. Bertrand de Billy
also proves his ability here to bring out the finest, subtlest
music-making from even the largest orchestral
and choral bodies.