an blog | AJBlog Central | Contact me | Advertise | Follow me:

Finisher of Mahler’s 10th takes Mahler’s former job

Yoel Gamzou, the young Israeli-American who wrote and conducted his own completion of Mahler’s tenth symphony, has been appointed first kapellmeister in Kassel, where the young Mahler was briefly second kapellmeister. Gamzou is 25 years old. Way to go.

Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...


  1. Stephen Whitaker says:

    The “Way to go” is presumably via Kassel-Calden Airport, located just 20 minutes from Kassel city centre .

    Please refrain from employing such ugly and meaningless expressions of approbation.

    • Maestro Flash Montoya says:

      settle down there. as soon as you’re calm, how ’bout a “high five” for the young man.

      • Stephen Whitaker says:

        Manners dictate that I couldn’t do that to a complete stranger either!

        Congratulations are in order but I haven’t the slightest notion of the merits
        of Yoel and his ‘completion’.

  2. Michael Hurshell says:

    I saw him perform his version of the 10th in Berlin, in 2010. While I didn’t particularly like the version itself, making the version and performing it was of course an immense achievement for such a young man. Very talented musician.

  3. Bob Burns says:

    “Finishing” the 10th is akin to someone doing the same to Picasso’s “The Charnel House.” It simply isn’t “finished.” It is someone’s idea of Mahler. It is not Mahler. It is a kind of ventriloquism.

    This young man may be an excellent musician but he is not Gustav Mahler.

  4. David Snyder says:

    “Bob Burns”, if that’s his real name has an interesting point. Does this young man compose? If so, what’s his music like?

    • Michael Hurshell says:

      “Completing” is simply shorthand for “making an attempt to make something performable out of the sketches.” It is understood by all – or at least all who take the subject seriously – that posthumously edited and expanded sketches do not pretend to “be Mahler.” Clearly, in the case of the 10th, many have been intrigued and the number of versions continues to grow. Therefore there is no call for derision. I rather think Gamzou will continue to edit his version, maybe for decades. That doesn’t mean it will wind up as the definitive version (if there ever will be such a thing), but his sincerity and dedication to the idea are evident.

  5. From what I’ve seen of the Mahler 10 sketches, the work is pretty much actually “finished” in that it has a continuous musical argument from the beginning to the end of each movement (like the 3rd Act of Berg’s Lulu but unlike, say, Bach’s last chorale prelude or the many broken-off-in-midstream fragments from Mozart). The sketches do need completion, however, in the sense that Hurshell uses. I have many problems with the over-used Deryck Cooke version (not least in the insufficiently complex handling of the strings) and welcome any new attempts at completion.

an ArtsJournal blog