The Royal Concertgebouw Orchestra conducted by Daniel Harding performs Mahler’s Symphony No. 1. The picturesque symphony seems to have a ‘programme’, but Gustav Mahler eventually withdrew all indications for that.
Gustav Mahler’s Symphony No. 1 is at the same time symphony and symphonic poem. The premiere in 1889 was a failure: the critics and the audience both found the First Symphony unbalanced and the changes of mood too extreme; the lack of a clear programme or title for the work was one of the principal causes of this general incomprehension. In 1893 Mahler added the title ‘Titan’ to the piece. Eventually Mahler renounced the title, but it is still often used.
Daniel Harding made his debut with the Royal Concertgebouw Orchestra in 2004, and returned to the orchestra several times. After serving as chief conductor of the Deutsche Kammerphilharmonie Bremen and the Trondheim Symphony Orchestra, he now holds the positions of principal guest conductor of the London Symphony Orchestra, music director of the Swedish Radio Symphony Orchestra, artistic director of the Ohga Hall in Karuizawa, Japan and conductor laureate of the Mahler Chamber Orchestra.