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„Rise again, yes, rise again“

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This year the honour of presenting the Beethovenfest’s final concert goes to the Mahler Chamber Orchestra. Our festival motto was
inspired by the finale of Gustav Mahler’s Second Symphony, where the opening line of the underlying Klopstock ode reads ’Rise again, yes, rise again’. Despite this religiously certified assurance of the future, the work’s gestation was an exhausting struggle with
Beethoven’s Ninth. Mahler spent almost six years labouring on his ’Resurrection’ Symphony. After receiving a withering critique of the
first movement from conductor Hans von Bülow, he lit on the idea for the monumental finale during – of all places – von Bülow’s funeral. It was to be a continuation and apotheosis of Beethoven’s great model. This impulse not only rescued the symphony, it also
strengthened Mahler’s resolve to pursue a composer’s career with every means at his disposal.

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