A symphony should contain everything – that was Gustav Mahler’s motto.
He was a rule-breaker who, with his maximalist symphonies, completed symphonic traditions in the footsteps of Beethoven, and set a course towards the music of the future.
His symphonies are often separated into three phases, where the first four are confessions, and show his search for a world view. With the next three, completely instrumental symphonies, he abandons the subjective and seeks an absolute music. The last symphonies were composed in close proximity to death.
Experience his mighty ninth symphony, a coming to terms with the after-life that is both beautiful and without compromise. It was to be his last completed symphony. The Gothenburg Symphony plays under the leadership of Jukka-Pekka Saraste, internationally celebrated for his Mahler interpretations.
Free introduction in the Stora Salen Hall one hour before the start of the concert with musicians from the orchestra.
Gothenburg Symphony Orchestra, called "one of the world's most formidable orchestras" by the Guardian, has toured the USA, Europe, Japan and the Far East and performed at major music centres and festivals throughout the world. Chief conductor is Santtu-Matias Rouvali who started his tenure in 2017. Kent Nagano has been principal guest conductor since 2013. Already at the orchestra's very first years, the great Swedish composer Wilhelm Stenhammar was appointed principal conductor, contributing strongly to the Nordic profile of the orchestra by inviting his colleagues Carl Nielsen and Jean Sibelius to conduct their own works.
Subsequent holders of the post include Sergiu Comissiona, Sixten Ehrling and Charles Dutoit. During Neeme Järvi's tenure (1982-2004), the orchestra became a major international force. In 1997 it was appointed the National Orchestra of Sweden. The list of prominent guest conductors has included Wilhelm Furtwängler, Pierre Monteux, Herbert von Karajan, Myung-Whun Chung, Herbert Blomstedt and Sir Simon Rattle. The orchestra also runs extensive concert projects for children, and regularly releases digital live concerts free on www.gsoplay.se.
The orchestra has issued over 100 recordings on BIS, Deutsche Grammophon, Chandos, Farao Classics and several other labels, including the complete orchestral music by Grieg and the complete symphonies of Sibelius, Nielsen, Stenhammar and Atterberg, and most recently orchestral music by Richard Strauss. The Gothenburg Symphony is owned by the Region Västra Götaland.
Jukka-Pekka Saraste Conductor