Mahler, Gustav. (1860–1911)
1900 Program, Conducting Beethoven's Symphonies 1 and 4
Rare program from a December 16, 1900 concert with members of the Vienna Hof-Opernorchester under Gustav Mahler, performing Beethoven's Symphony no. 1, Overture to Coriolanus, and Symphony no. 4. 6 pp., including a list of the orchestra members and advertising. Small stamps and notes to the front wrapper. Toning and wear, with staple binding detached; overall very good. 5.5 x 8 inches (14 x 20.3 cm).
Mahler created controversy with his re-orchestrations of Beethoven's symphonies, sometimes adding instruments (such as the tuba) that would have been unknown to Beethoven. Along with the Ninth Symphony, the Overture to Coriolanus was one of the works to receive this treatment, to a degree that conductor Leonard Slatkin considers "over the top." However, in a pamphlet he distributed at one of the Beethoven performances of 1900, Mahler explained that: "far from following any arbitrary purpose ... [I] was constantly and solely concerned with carrying out Beethoven's wishes even in seemingly insignificant details, and with ensuring that nothing the master intended should be sacrificed or drowned in a general confusion of sound."