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Kazushi Ono / Wouter Van Vaerenbergh

Matinee: Mahler 5

Brussels Philharmonic, Kazushi Ono

Gustav Mahler’s symphonies are one of the cornerstones of 20th-century symphonic music. Magnificent architectural structures, fearless and pioneering forms with deep, personal and sometimes raw emotions.

For anyone not yet familiar with Mahler’s music, his epic 5th Symphony makes an ideal ‘first date’. In this work, the composer was finally read to leave behind his quest for answers to the big life questions, and to focus with all his might and optimism on life. The result is intense music that reflects both the force of nature of the Austrian mountains and his love for his wife Alma - in a moving Adagietto that has become world-famous thanks to Visconti’s film Death in Venice.

Mahler’s great friend Natalie Bauer-Lechner described it as follows: ‘Every note is full of vitality and spins around as if in a whirlwind. There is nothing romantic or mystical in it: it is simply an expression of unbelievable energy and unparalleled strength. It is humanity in the clear light of day, at the apex of his life.’

Flagey, Brussels Philharmonic