Mahler from the train … update post … ‘that’s’ Why Mahler

So here is an edited version of Friday’s Mahler Stube and composing hut picture.
(Note: see previous post below – ‘Mahler from the train’ – to make sense of this one) :

And here now are some rather clearer pictures I took when I journeyed from Venice in August 2009 (exactly one century after Mahler was working there) to see the hut:

This, amongst other things, is a piece of paper I found in the hut in Mahler’s handwriting listing the movements of the Song of the Earth and the 9th. symphony, presumably made whilst he was at the Hotel Savoy in New York during the winter season of 1908.

And this is the kind of view that Mahler would have had from just outside his composing hut. Bizarrely, it points exactly to where the snowy picture from the train was taken. Dobbiaco is visible in the distance.

And finally here is a youtube where you can see video of the Stube up close.

These pictures may look ‘nice’, but the experience of being there, right in the hut, well that is just indescribable. When there in 2009 I went for dinner in the Stube the night before visiting the hut, courtesy of a hire bicycle at the railway station, and met the owner. Then I got there early the next morning, right at opening time, and had more than an hour in the hut on my own. During that time I listened to the 1974 Christa Ludwig, Reneé Kollo and Leonard Bernstein recording of Das Lied on an MP3 that I had brought with me. Oh, and I made sure not to go during Dobbiaco Mahler Festival time. Mahler in the mountains. Get it right and there is simply nothing to compare with it. You look at that picture from outside the hut looking towards Dobbiaco and the mountains that are now the Austrian border, and think, ‘that is exactly the view that he would have seen whilst writing this music’. Why Mahler? … that’s why Mahler.


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