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THE SCOOP | Orchestre symphonique de Montréal And Maestro Rafael Payare Celebrate A New Recording & Long Term Partnership

By Anya Wassenberg on March 3, 2023

Orchestre symphonique de Montréal (Photo courtesy of the OSM)
Orchestre symphonique de Montréal (Photo courtesy of the OSM)

The Orchestre symphonique de Montréal and conductor Rafael Payare are marking the beginning of a long term partnership with Pentatone with a new recording, released today.

Distributed through Naxos, Mahler Symphony No. 5 is planned to be the first of a series of recordings to be released in the coming years. The album was recorded at la Maison symphonique de Montréal, Canada, in August 2022.

It’s an auspicious beginning to Payare’s tenure as conductor.

Rafael Payare (Photo: Antoine Saito)
Maestro Rafael Payare (Photo: Antoine Saito)


Rafael Payare, Music Director of the Orchestre symphonique de Montréal, released a statement about the album, and a work that is close to his heart.

“Gustav Mahler’s Fifth Symphony is a deeply personal work, written at the prime of the composer’s life. The extremes in the music — from the darkness of the funeral march to the ecstatic joy of the finale — very much reflect the highs and lows of his own life at the time, which range from surviving a near-death experience to marrying his beloved Alma and becoming director of the Vienna Court Orchestra.

“The Fifth is the last of Mahler’s symphonies to have an almost naïve quality; his subsequent symphonic works would take a much darker, more existential turn. But in the Fifth, we have a composer who, while a fully mature artist, is still looking forward to what the future might bring. This is music brimming with exuberant energy, hope and a deep love of life.

“I could not be happier to be immersed in Mahler’s score with the Orchestre symphonique de Montréal. Their technical finesse and their tonal colour, range and depth bring to life the vast musical canvas that the composer created. For me personally, it is also a beautiful way to begin a long and rewarding relationship with this wonderful orchestra. We invite you to experience Mahler’s rich and profoundly moving music with us.”

Renaud Loranger, Vice President Artists & Repertoire, Pentatone also discussed the recording in a statement.

“Growing up near Montréal, OSM concerts — first at Lanaudière, and later in the city — were the bedrock of my musical upbringing. It is an immense pleasure and privilege to welcome this storied ensemble to the Pentatone family, all the more so with their new music director, Rafael Payare, at the helm — a conductor who truly embodies the present and future of the art form.”

The OSM already boasts an impressive discography — Mahler No. 5 will be the organization’s 132nd recording. They’ve recorded on a long list of the world’s classical labels, including Decca, Analekta, Sony, and CBC Records, among others.

The symphony was recorded as the OSM launched a Mahler cycle that will take them through multiple seasons of concerts.

Buy/stream the album from the service of your choice here.


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