Now we can all share the magic of a very, very special evening in the Royal Festival Hall in 1999. The Berlin Philharmonic's performance that night defies description, defies superlatives for me. Mahler's magnificent depiction of the evolution of life on Earth could surely never receive a more resounding or moving performance. The playing is peerless, and I just can't see how it can ever be bettered.
Personally I find this one of the very greatest of Mahler's symphonies. From the thrilling intensity of the first movement, through to the beautiful, angelic voices in the fifth, this is uplifting, life-enhacing music par excellence. Then there is the magnificently romantic sixth movement, the crowning glory of the whole piece.
At the end, the audience goes wild. Who can blame them?