Mahler: A Biography

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Overlook Press, Sep 1, 1999 - Biography & Autobiography - 254 pages
3 Reviews
Although Gustav Mahler has become one of most popular of composers, he remains widely misunderstood both as man and musician. In Mahler, Jonathan Carr analyzes and debunks many of the myths surrounding the composer, offering a complete re-examination of his life and work. Setting the stage with a look into Mahler's early career as an ambitious (and often ruthless) conductor, Carr focuses his eye on the composer's last decade -- his tempestuous marriage to the complicated but alluring Alma Schindler, his work as a "summer composer" in isolated huts in the country, his revolutionary achievements as director of the Vienna opera, his final years in America, and the circumstances around his death in 1911.In her memoirs Alma drew Mahler as a sickly, cerebral recluse. Arnold Schoenberg called him a "saint." Leonard Bernstein, largely responsible for the Mahler "boom" in the Sixties, found a "secret shame" at the heart of Mahler's music, "the shame of being a Jew and the shame of being ashamed." But he was also skilled at behind-the-scenes politicking in Vienna and a devotee of Oriental mysticism, both of which are crucial for a full understanding of Mahler. Using letters, diaries, and other material hitherto unavailable in English, Carr brilliantly challenges some of the most widely held assumptions about Mahler.

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Review: Mahler: A Biography

User Review  - Brian - Goodreads

I really loved how objective the author was in his analysis of Mahler's life. There were several instances in which he specifically states that there's some argumentation as to what transpired in ... Read full review

Review: Mahler: A Biography

User Review  - Shiblets - Goodreads

So far, this book is interesting. And it's funny some of the stories they tell about Mahler! Such as him at the age of three going out side in nothing but a shirt and an accordian! And that when he ... Read full review

Contents

On the Road
29
To the Summit
51
Vienna Digging In
76
Copyright

9 other sections not shown

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About the author (1999)

Jonathan Carr was a former bureau chief of the Financial Times and The Economist. His other books include biographies of Helmut Schmidt and Gustav Mahler.

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