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Culture watch: A recently discovered 'Das Lied von der Erde' recording

June 15, 2011 |  5:30 am

Das lied Mahler: Das Lied von der Erde

(Deutsche Grammophon)

This live recording of Mahler’s “Song of the Earth” — with tenor Fritz Wunderlich, baritone Dietrich Fischer-Dieskau and the Vienna Symphony conducted by Josef Krips — comes out of the blue and is out of this world.

A recently discovered document of a concert in Vienna on June 14, 1964, it captures both singers at their considerable primes. Wunderlich’s lyrical energy and Dieskau’s refined plumbing of Mahlerian pathos create tense immediacy.

The no-nonsense Krips (who had become music director of the San Francisco Symphony the year before) determinedly points out startling details in Mahler’s orchestral score with a brutally compelling urgency.


More Culture Watch picks from Times writers

— Mark Swed