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Mahler Symphony No. 4 – Bass Part

Edited by Paul Ellison

Title: Symphony No. 4
Composer: Gustav Mahler
Instrument: Bass
Edited By: Paul Ellison
Instrumentation: Orchestral
Pages: 13

The bass part for Mahler's Symphony No. 4 in G major has been edited by Paul Ellison, in-demand double bassist, professor, presenter, and former Houston Symphony Orchestra principal bassist of 23 years. Ellison's bowings, fingerings and other editorial markings have been added throughout the score.

Mahler's Fourth is one of the composer's shorter symphonies, clocking in at only about an hour. Mahler's first four symphonies feature themes that originate in earlier songs by Mahler on texts from Des Knaben Wunderhorn (The Youth's Magic Horn). However, the fourth symphony is built around a single song, "Das himmlische Leben," which presents a child's vision of Heaven. Symphony No. 4 begins with a classically sonata form movement, followed by a scherzo & trio then a solemn processional march cast as a set of variations. The song is prefigured in various ways in the first three movements, but in the fourth and final movement the song sung in its entirety by a solo soprano. The soprano represents the child presenting a sunny, naive vision of Heaven and describes the feast being prepared for all the saints.

Download and print the score today to gain access to expertly edited Mahler Symphony No. 4 bass fingerings and bowings from Paul Ellison!

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Dear bassist or interested party,

All my editing is done in the spirit of "living editions." They are never finished or to be considered set in stone.  Bowings, articulations, fingerings, dynamics and phrasings may change with conductors, historical performance considerations, change of instrument, bow or strings, differing venues, individual physical considerations, change of climate or altitude not to mention additional acquired knowledge or change in personal taste.  Asking oneself to have about five ways to play most passages seems to cover the fluctuating circumstances mentioned in addition to giving oneself reason and context for choices to be made.  Each set of performances of any major work is likely to prompt some change(s).  The very nature and future of music as an art form demands live, dynamic, fresh interpretations which frequently necessitates realizing that there actually is no "rule book" and that the "bass police" will never actually show up. 

Please accept this editing in the spirit of knowing that our skills and abilities are in constant flux and may require many possibilities.  Here's to great music making.

-Paul Ellison

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