Symphony No.2 in C minor ('Resurrection')
Gustav Mahler

88

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The third of Mahler's Hall of Fame entries, the Second Symphony is down five

Not content with stretching the orchestra to its limit, Mahler clearly fancied a challenge when composing his Symphony No. 2 in the late 1800s. His triumphant symphonic debut, the Titan, had called for many more instruments than was the norm, so for his follow-up he decided to go one step further. The gargantuan symphony orchestra would remain, but alongside it was placed an organ, an offstage brass ensemble, and some church bells.

And a choir. A very large choir.

And, to round things off, some soloists. It's little wonder that, whenever the Resurrection Symphony is performed, it's the only work on the programme.

The Resurrection of Christ by Paolo Veronese (c.1570).