Category: Reviews & Articles
From Mahler's Des Knaben Wunderhorn concert with the Sydney Symphony, Mark Wigglesworth, conductor


"The first song, Revelge, saw Scarlata narrating a battle scene, gesturing pugnaciously with his hands and leading the audience into the action of the frontline. His high notes were impeccable while the deeper sonorities pierced through the grisly chromatic passages in the strings, the col legno adding to the spine-chilling, hostile vista. In Des Antonius von Padua Fischpredigt, in which a priest must preach to fish as his congregation is nowhere to be found, Scarlata was able to encapsulate the ironies and contradictions contained within the story, surely the same irony that bred the association of youth and death in Mahler himself. But with Mahler, no cycle can end without a return to the funereal. In Der Tambourg'sell (The Drummer Boy), Scarlata's intensely dramatic rendition of a young boy marching to the gallows had the audience on edge: whether that drummer boy is the young Gustav, some nameless military man, or humankind itself, the first half was bid Gute Nacht in a most frightful but beautiful manner."