In November 1995, Telarc released a recording of Mahler's Symphony No. 5 performed by the Atlanta Symphony Orchestra led by Yoel Levi (CD-80394). Upcoming plans for recordings with the ASO include the Dvorÿk Slavonic Dances (scheduled to be recorded this May) and another Mahler disc, featuring the Symphony No. 4 along with the Songs of a Wayfarer.
Levi, who became Music Director of the ASO in 1988, plans to serve in that capacity until the year 2000.
Mahler composed his Symphony No. 6 in A Minor in 1904, and revised it several times. Divided into four movements, it was subtitled "Tragic" at its first performances, but the composer later discarded that appellation.
A highly emotional work, the symphony is noted for its ominous "hammer blows of fate" in the final movement, depicting, according to Mahler, the downfall of his hero, "who undergoes three strokes of destiny, the third of which fells him like a tree." In his final revision of the symphony, Mahler deleted the third hammer blow, leaving only the first two dramatic moments so accompanied.