Yannick Nézet-Séguin conducts Mahler's Symphony No. 5

Rotterdam Philharmonic Orchestra

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Rotterdam Philharmonic Orchestra

Yannick Nézet-Séguin — Conductor

Program notes

Before he had even turned 40, star conductor Yannick Nézet-Séguin had already won a lifetime’s worth of acclaim. Watch the maestro bring his trademark flair to Mahler’s colossal Symphony No. 5 in this knockout performance with the world-class Rotterdam Philharmonic Orchestra!

1901 was a year of great highs and lows for Mahler: a hemorrhage in February nearly ended his life, and in November he met Alma Schindler, whom he would marry just months later. Composed against this turbulent backdrop, the tonally expansive Fifth Symphony begins with a C-sharp minor funeral march and finishes with an ebullient D-major rondo. Between these poles of grief and jubilation lies the exquisite Adagietto in F major, one of Mahler’s most beloved works, thought to be a musical love letter to Alma.

Nézet-Séguin's electric rapport with the RPhO, forged during his celebrated decade-long tenure as their director, is the product of his dynamism and verve with their renowned energy and soloistic qualities; together, they are the perfect team for the monumental task. Yannick also knows the music intimately: he conducted Mahler’s Fifth to rave reviews in Philadelphia almost a decade earlier, and his triumphant return to the work in 2019 was called “even better with age … passion on a higher level” by the Philadelphia Inquirer. 

Yannick Nézet-Séguin appears courtesy of Deutsche Grammophon

Photo: Yannick Nézet-Séguin © Hans van der Woerd

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Thursday, February 16, 2023