Next: Mahler on Music

Gustav Mahler



Maestro E and his good friend (and brilliant composer) Alastair Putt at the house shown above. The sign reads: "Composed here: Das Lied von der Erde, Symphony no. 9, Unfinished Symphony no. 10"

Mahler in 1881. At age twenty-one he had just completed his first major work, "Das Klagende Lied", and was miserably in love for the first time.

Mahler's composing hut in Toblach (now part of Italy, but at the time it was part of Austria), in the Italian Alps (Dolomites). Mahler composed his final works in this hut!

Alma Schindler, c. 1898. Often called "the most beautiful woman in Vienna", she would become Mahler's wife in 1902.  She was an accomplished pianist and showed talent for composing, which was quashed by Mahler until very late in his life. Her beauty was matchless and legendary. She outlived Mahler by 53 years.

Mahler and his wife had two children: Maria (left) and Anna (right). Maria died tragically in 1907 at the age of five from scarlet fever and diphtheria. His daughter Anna lived to the ripe age of 83, dying in 1988. She was an accomplished sculptor.

Mahler with his daughter Anna, photographed in 1909, only two years before the composer's death. By this time in 1909 Mahler was already critically ill.

Mahler and Freud. Mahler visited Freud in Holland in 1910, one year before Mahler's death. Mahler was having serious marital problems and sought advice from the great psychoanalyst.  Freud came to the conclusion that Mahler had a "mother fixation" after Mahler related his entire life story to Freud.

Like Richard Strauss, Mahler was an outdoor enthusiast and a very passionate hiker. Here is a characteristic photo of Mahler in his element: the Alps!

The house that Mahler spent his last few summers at, in Toblach. It is now a restaurant (and not a bad one!)

Mahler, like his friend Richard Strauss, was a favorite subject for cartoonists and caricaturists. Here is a small sampling. The basic themes should be apparent!

Mahler and Richard Strauss coming out of the Vienna Opera House. Note the huge difference in height between the two composers!

The first known picture of Mahler, aged five or six. Later in life Mahler recalled how he had dreaded the occasion, thinking he would be whisked inside the camera and stuck on a piece of cardboard. Compare with the early photo of Richard Strauss, below, who appears full of confidence and aplomb.

One of the last photographs of Mahler, possibly taken in October 1910 on his final voyage from Europe to New York or on the return journey, April 1911. His face is already listless, his strength failing: he stands in his characteristic pose.

Mahler on his way to America in 1908 to become the conductor of the Metropolitan Opera in New York. Note the remarkable (and sad) change between this picture and the one below taken three years later....

Maestro E paying homage to Mahler at the hut, 2016.

Mahler at the seaside in Holland, 1906.