• Gustav Mahler
    Symphony No. 1 in D major (65 min.)

    Berliner Philharmoniker

    Sir Simon Rattle

  • Gustav Mahler
    Symphony No. 2 in C minor “Resurrection” (93 min.)

    Berliner Philharmoniker

    Sir Simon Rattle

    Rundfunkchor Berlin, Magdalena Kožená Mezzo-Soprano, Simon Halsey Chorus Master, Kate Royal Soprano

  • Gustav Mahler
    Symphony No. 3 in D minor (109 min.)

    Berliner Philharmoniker

    Sir Simon Rattle

    Nathalie Stutzmann Contralto, Knaben des Staats- und Domchors Berlin, Women of the Rundfunkchor Berlin, Simon Halsey Chorus Master

  • Gustav Mahler
    Symphony No. 4 in G major (66 min.)

    Berliner Philharmoniker

    Sir Simon Rattle

    Camilla Tilling Soprano

  • Gustav Mahler
    Symphony No. 5 (73 min.)

    Berliner Philharmoniker

    Sir Simon Rattle

  • Gustav Mahler
    Symphony No. 6 (95 min.)

    Berliner Philharmoniker

    Sir Simon Rattle

  • Gustav Mahler
    Symphony No. 7 (83 min.)

    Berliner Philharmoniker

    Sir Simon Rattle

  • Gustav Mahler
    Symphony No. 8 “Symphony of a Thousand” (88 min.)

    Berliner Philharmoniker

    Sir Simon Rattle

    Erika Sunnegårdh Soprano, Susan Bullock Soprano, Anna Prohaska Soprano, Lilli Paasikivi Soprano, Nathalie Stutzmann Contralto, Johan Botha Tenor, David Wilson-Johnson Baritone, John Relyea Baritone, MDR Rundfunkchor , Howard Arman Chorus Master, Knaben des Staats- und Domchors Berlin, Rundfunkchor Berlin, Simon Halsey Chorus Master

  • Gustav Mahler
    Das Lied von der Erde (77 min.)

    Berliner Philharmoniker

    Sir Simon Rattle

    Anne Sofie von Otter Mezzo-Soprano, Stuart Skelton Tenor

  • Gustav Mahler
    Symphony No. 9 (91 min.)

    Berliner Philharmoniker

    Sir Simon Rattle

  • Gustav Mahler
    Lieder eines fahrenden Gesellen (19 min.)

    Berliner Philharmoniker

    Sir Simon Rattle

    Christian Gerhaher Baritone

  • Gustav Mahler
    Rückert-Lieder (24 min.)

    Berliner Philharmoniker

    Sir Simon Rattle

    Magdalena Kožená Mezzo-Soprano

The Berliner Philharmoniker can look back on a remarkable Mahler tradition. The composer himself appeared as a conductor with the orchestra, and performed his Second and Third Symphonies here, the latter in its first ever performance. The orchestra’s high regard for the composer, who was anything but undisputed during his lifetime and for many years afterwards, is demonstrated by a variety of dates: the monumental Eighth Symphony was performed in Berlin as early as 1912, the first German Mahler cycle was also performed here in 1923, and the Resurrection Symphony was heard at the Philharmoniker’s radio debut a year later. Among Mahler’s conductors with the Philharmoniker were their close associates Bruno Walter, Raffael Kubelik, Otto Klemperer and Leonard Bernstein, who conducted an unforgettable performance of the Ninth in his only programme with the orchestra. While Wilhelm Furtwängler and Herbert von Karajan’s relationship with the composer remained somewhat distant (although Karajan’s interest increased in his later years), two proven Mahler experts, Claudio Abbado and Sir Simon Rattle, were appointed chief conductors of the orchestra.

Mahler played a more central role in Sir Simon’s musical career than almost any other composer: as a teenager he conducted the Second Symphony with an orchestra and chorus he formed for the event. During his time as music director of the City of Birmingham Symphony Orchestra, Rattle realized a cycle, most of which is also documented on recordings. And many key milestones in his work with the Berliner Philharmoniker were marked by Mahler performances: his debut with the orchestra in 1987 and his last concert as chief conductor in the Philharmonie in June 2018 featured the Sixth Symphony, sometimes referred to as the “Tragic”, plus Rattle’s first concert as chief conductor which saw an acclaimed performance of the Fifth.

Two anniversaries followed each other in 2010 and 2011: the first marked the 150th anniversary of the composer’s birth and the second the 100th anniversary of his death. To mark the occasion, Sir Simon and the Philharmoniker performed the composer’s nine completed symphonies and his Lied von der Erde. As this playlist with the complete symphonies and important orchestral lieder shows, Mahler’s music was also an important part of the repertoire in the years that followed. Consequently, Sir Simon’s era with the Berliner Philharmoniker will be remembered not least as a time of great Mahler performances.