Mahler was no stranger to loss and untimely death, having grieved for eight of his siblings who died in their childhood.
Thus he was moved to select 5 poems written by a grief-stricken father who set his pain to words in a collection of over 400 poems, looking for meaning and catharsis. Never intended for publication but were later printed posthumously.
This 5-movement work, arranged here for viola quartet, lends a new dimension to the text; there is pain, but also acceptance and transcendence, and a wonderful spirit of love and hope. The subtle timbre of the viola ensemble is perfectly suited to the music.Truly amazing work. 24 mins. M