Audio Overview: The Achieved Orchestra Performs Mahler at Carnegie Hall

December 25th, 2013

Hiroyuki Ito for The New York Moments

The Met Orchestra Peter Mattei singing Mahler’s “Lieder Eines Fahrenden Gesellen” with this orchestra led by James Levine at Carnegie Corridor.

Placing a benchmark for “beauty” in a voice, as in everything, is in a natural way a highly subjective endeavor. A seem a single listener may consider exclusive may possibly demonstrate grating to yet another. Even some of the most beloved singers, like Maria Callas, experienced their detractors.

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But if a benchmark can be proven, Peter Mattei certainly has 1 of the most gorgeous voices of any dwelling singer — a mellifluous, lustrous baritone with no rough edges or imperfections. His relocating performance of Mahler’s “Lieder Eines Fahrenden Gesellen” (“Songs of a Wayfarer”) with James Levine and the Met Orchestra on Sunday afternoon at Carnegie Hall reinforced that impact.

That youthful track cycle, created before Mahler’s symphonies and other massive parts, depicts the emotions of an deserted lover. Mahler, who was motivated by the German folk poetry selection “Des Knaben Wunderhorn” when he wrote his very own texts for the function, composed the cycle although infatuated with the soprano Johanna Richter.

Mr. Mattei, a tall, charismatic and graceful stage existence, imbued the music with myriad shadings and information, conveying an aching vulnerability in the opening track, which depicts the protagonist’s disappointment as he imagines his beloved’s marriage to one more. He sang with stylish phrasing during, as in the poignantly shaped line “Ah mein Leide” (“About my sorrow”) that concludes the initial tune. The contrasts in between sections have been vivid, with Mr. Mattei rendering the dramatic third song with heartfelt conviction and singing with gentle radiance in the resigned closing section.

Mr. Levine and the orchestra accompanied him with equally revelatory enjoying, the swirling orchestral shades in the third area a powerful counterpart to Mr. Mattei’s despairing portrayal of the heartsick youthful gentleman.

Soon after intermission came Mahler’s Symphony No. 7, which lasts nicely over an hour and is scored for vast forces such as trademark Mahlerian touches like cowbells. The sprawling symphony unfolds in excess of five movements and was motivated by a verse by the German Passionate poet Joseph von Eichendorff — “Sleeps a song in items abounding, at any time dreaming to be read. All Earth’s tunes starts resounding, if you uncover the magic word” — and the sound of lapping oars Mahler listened to in the course of a boat journey in Austria.

The outer movements had been the most convincing in this overall performance, with polished brass taking part in and an urgency that rendered the first section notably vivid. An edge-of-your-seat pleasure improved the tumultuous finale, which unfolded in a blaze of orchestral shade. The meandering middle movements proved significantly less powerful, even though Mr. Levine illuminated plenty of specifics, as in the atmospheric Nachtmusik I, which the composer compared to Rembrandt’s portray “The Evening View.”

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