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The Fifth


21 – 22 Nov 2024

Last season's Symphony No. 4 elevated ambiguity to a principle of composition. Composed two years on, the Fifth ushers in a new era in Mahler's creative work. The inspiration drawn from Des Knaben Wunderhorn has dried up; the human voice is - until the Eighth – left to one side. Above all, the orchestra takes on a whole new dimension: the writing became denser and more complex, using superimposed, often heterogeneous lines that hardly seemed destined to come together - such was Mahler's original conception of polyphony; each instrument is treated as a soloist independent of the other musicians, with a fragmentation of ranks and an extreme refinement of orchestration.

But as is often the case, it is above all the astonishing trajectory of the work that impresses. Beginning with the tragedy of a ponderous funeral march, an inexplicable and sudden shift in the middle of the second movement propels it into humorous exuberance and an irrepressibly positive energy that now leads the way. Only the dreamy nocturnal adagietto interrupts this effervescence for a while. Should we see in this upheaval an echo of the one Mahler experienced in 1901 when he met the brilliant and striking young woman he was soon to marry? This concert also offers us the pleasure of welcoming back Giulio Cilona, Kapellmeister at Berlin's Deutsche Oper, who made such an impression in a memorable Don Pasquale in Nancy in December 2023.


  • Thu. 21 November 2024
    Salle Poirel
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  • Fri. 22 November 2024
    Salle Poirel
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about 1 h 15

€ 5 - 38

The concert on Friday 22 November features a music discovery workshop for children aged 7 to 12. For more information, click here.


Musical direction

Giulio Cilona

Gustav Mahler

 Symphony n°5

See also

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