I saw a performance of Mahler’s 7th last night. While I recognize the evening’s event as a major achievement for both the orchestra and the conductor, I feel totally unqualified to judge the performance beyond that. I find this piece completely unintelligible. From start to finish there is not a note that I understand, even after having heard the piece in its entirety several times.
The closest parallel I can think of would be a James Joyce novel like Ulysses or Finnegan’s Wake, works I find equally impenetrable. However, I know that really brilliant people respect all of these works, so I’ll try not to write them off too quickly.
But really, what the hell are those guitar and mandolin doing in there?