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Mahler, IX Symphony, Adagio
Last post Wed, Feb 21 2018 by stephen limbaugh, 5 replies.
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Posted on Sun, Feb 11 2018 16:14
by PaoloT
Joined on Tue, Dec 27 2016, Posts 228

Hi, this is a project I started one year ago to check the different libraries. It's just the beginning of the Adagio, with a slow, transparent polyphony of orchestral strings.

I could finally edit it and adapt it to the full VSL Orchestral and Chamber Strings (plus MIR and a couple effects from Logic). Does it work?



Posted on Fri, Feb 16 2018 22:04
by agitato
Joined on Mon, Jun 22 2015, Posts 278

Hi Paolo,

to be honest I started listening with a lot of skepticism about whether its even possible to render Mahler IX.  But I was surprised when I started listening. Youve done a great job.

However there is room for improvement. Most important, you need more variation in dynamics, particularly in the long notes. Then this would sound really good. You need to make each note as expressive as possible...



Anand Kumar
Posted on Sat, Feb 17 2018 16:51
by Jos Wylin
Joined on Mon, Dec 03 2012, Flanders, Belgium, Posts 451

Hi Paolo,

You have achieved your goals: it is slow, transparent and the orchestral strings do sound lovely. The effects you've added function well, but I have to agree with Agitato that the long notes could have more life in them, realising however that this is one of the toughest things to realise with all string libraries. I've read that remark so often, that it looks like everybody is struggling with the same issue, counting in myself. I guess there is only one way to improve this and that is listening as often as possible to good real examples and then trying to imitate these as precisely as possible...

This was by all means a very decent attempt!


compositions and sampling exercises
Posted on Mon, Feb 19 2018 16:56
by PaoloT
Joined on Tue, Dec 27 2016, Posts 228

Anand and Jos, thank you very much for your ears and hints! Making long notes alive is really a challenge, and I've been too conservative with dynamic controls. I think the next revision would be trying with a breath controller, or just being a bit more expressive with the modulation wheel. Tempo changes will be another thing to check.

And, sure – a great recording of a great conductor with a great orchestra should serve as a model. This will be a much more challenging task, than simply entering notes and controls!


Posted on Wed, Feb 21 2018 09:55
by stephen limbaugh
Joined on Tue, Feb 23 2016, Los Angeles, Posts 55

Not to totally butt in, I gave this a shot a while back as well.


I think one of the key aspects in mocking this up is to make us of sul G patches.  My rendition uses only the Dimension Strings, which is about 2/5 this size needed for this symphony.  It also falls short in transitions from note to note.  Once I have my Synchron strings updated with 2nds/violas legato, I may revisit and fix!

The transitions between the notes I think is very important, as is follow the score (the accents and bowing needs to be applied to the mockup).  

"lang gezogen"... drawn out... MOLTO expressivo... if our Vienna Instruments player is in fact an instrument, we should be riding those CC faders HARD through a piece from Mahler -- a composer who does intense soft, intense loud, intense everything.  "stets großer Ton" ....or if there is movement against held note, bring out the movement! "lang gezogen!" haha  You must read at least 4 languages!

Here is a cheat sheet:


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