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Mahler's VoicesExpression and Irony in the Songs and Symphonies$
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Julian Johnson

Print publication date: 2009

Print ISBN-13: 9780195372397

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: May 2009

DOI: 10.1093/acprof:oso/9780195372397.001.0001

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Constructing a Voice

Constructing a Voice

Chapter:
(p.93) 3 Constructing a Voice
Source:
Mahler's Voices
Author(s):

Julian Johnson (Contributor Webpage)

Publisher:
Oxford University Press
DOI:10.1093/acprof:oso/9780195372397.003.0003

Mahler's music draws attention to its own artifice, as the product of musical construction. As such it is a self‐conscious musical style, aware of the historicism of its own materials and forms. This tendency is present from his earliest music and is exemplified in the Wunderhorn songs that distance themselves from the lyrical expression of Mahler's contemporaries. The middle symphonies, the Fourth in particular, foreground this idea of music as something made from an ironic play with familiar, historical materials.

Keywords:   artifice, construction, invention, self‐consciousness, historicism, Wunderhorn, Fourth Symphony

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