Last modified on 2 November 2014, at 05:00

Gustav Mahler

If a composer could say what he had to say in words he would not bother trying to say it in music.

Gustav Mahler (7 July 186018 May 1911) was a Bohemian-Austrian composer and conductor.

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  • Ich weiß für mich, daß ich, solang ich mein Erlebnis in Worten zusammenfassen kann, gewiß keine Musik hierüber machen würde.
    • If a composer could say what he had to say in words he would not bother trying to say it in music.
    • Variant: For myself I know that, as long as I can summarize my experience in words, I would certainly not make any music about it.
      • Letter to Max Marschalk (1896-03-26). Original German text cited from: Blaukopf, Herta (ed.). Gustav Mahler. Briefe. 2nd edition. Zsolnay, Vienna 1996, ISBN 3-552-04810-3, p. 171.

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