Gustav Mahler quotes

Who is Gustav Mahler?

Gustav Mahler was an Austro-Bohemian Romantic composer, and one of the leading conductors of his generation.

Gustav Mahler quotes

“A symphony must be like the world. It must contain everything.”

Gustav Mahler

“Both my marriages were failures! Number one departed, and number two stayed.”

Gustav Mahler

“I am hitting my head against the walls, but the walls are giving way.”

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 Letter to Max Marschalk

“If you think you're boring your audience, go slower not faster.”

Gustav Mahler

“It is a funny thing, but when I am making music, all the answers I seek for in life seem to be there, in the music. Or rather, I should say, when I am making music, there are no questions and no need for answers.”

Gustav Mahler

“It should be one’s sole endeavor to see everything afresh and create it anew.”

Gustav Mahler

“Melodic invention is one of the surest signs of a divine gift.”

Gustav Mahler

“Never let oneself be guided by the opinion of one's contemporaries. Continue steadfastly on one's way.”

Gustav Mahler

“The point is not to take the world's opinion as a guiding star but to go one's way in life and working unerringly, neither depressed by failure nor seduced by applause.”

Gustav Mahler

“To write a symphony is, for me, to construct a world.”

Gustav Mahler

“Tradition is not the worship of ashes, but the preservation of fire.”

Gustav Mahler

“What is best in music is not to be found in the notes.”

Gustav Mahler

“You must renounce all superficiality, all convention, all vanity and delusion.”

Gustav Mahler