Eckehard Stier: Conductor.
Messiaen - l’Ascension;
Mahler - Symphony No.5.
Messiaen’s l’Ascension is a testimony to the depth of the composer’s Catholic faith - it was described as “spiritually ecstatic” by one reviewer. Whatever its ecclesiastical references, this is a dramatic orchestral work.
Considerably grander is Mahler’s Fifth Symphony, the opening trumpet fanfare of which presages a passionate and exhilarating journey through emotional territory that range from “total darkness to total light at either end of the symphony”. Listen out for the music from the soundtrack to the film Death In Venice.