A CMajor/Unitel release [Unitel802808, DVD; 802904; Blu-ray] features as very fine performance of Mahler’s Symphony No. 2 “Resurrection” filmed at Barcelona’s Palau de la Música Catalana last year.

Gustavo Dudamel leads the superb Munich Philharmonic and the equally exceptional choirs of Orfeó Català and Cor de Cambra del Palau de la Música Catalana. The splendid vocal soloists are mezzo-soprano Tamara Mumford and soprano Chen Reiss.

A lengthy composition that runs close to ninety minutes but never overstays its welcome, the five-movement symphony is a mature work to which the composer initially attached a narrative to accompany the music. Mahler later got rid of it but the spirituality of the title and the text of the vocal music from the fourth movement – Urlicht – and the final Die Auferstehung reveal the spirituality behind the music.

Mezzo-soprano Tamara Mumford uses her silky voice to good effect in Urlicht and soprano Chen Reiss brings a silvery, shimmering quality to the music and words of Die Auferstehung: “With wings which I have won for myself, In love’s fierce striving, I shall soar upwards To the light which no eye has penetrated!”

Gustavo Dudamel draws a noble performance from his orchestral and choral forces, remarkably conducting the entire score by memory in this treasure of a collector’s item.

Rafael de Acha http://www.RafaelMusicNotes.com