Mahler´s Eighth Symphony

The Symphony of a Thousand doesn’t quite require 1,000 performers, but close to 300 singers and instrumentalists. Mahler’s Symphony No. 8 is in every way a musical epos, and a grandiose tribute to love and the salvation of mankind. Watch the livestreaming of Friday´s concert on Play.

Inspiration struck Gustav Mahler with incredible force in the summer of 1906 when he wrote the whole piece in a matter of months. His wife, Alma, later told how the Veni Creator Spiritus music of the first movement was composed before Mahler received the text, and yet fit like a glove. Mahler’s Symphony No. 8 brought together the Latin 9th century hymn and Goethe’s 1,000 years younger play Faust. It’s a pioneering and optimistic piece that, in the words of the composer, sounds ‘as if the whole universe began to sing’!



dot 2017/2018





The Swedish Radio Symphony Orchestra is a multiple-award-winning ensemble renowned for its high artistic standard and stylistic breadth, as well as collaborations with the world’s finest composers, conductors, and soloists. It regularly tours all over Europe and the world and has an extensive and acclaimed recording catalogue.

Daniel Harding has been Music Director of the SRSO since 2007, and since 2019 also its Artistic Director. His tenure will last throughout the 2024/2025 season. Two of the orchestra’s former chief conductors, Herbert Blomstedt and Esa-Pekka Salonen, have since been named Conductors Laureate, and continue to perform regularly with the orchestra.

The Swedish Radio Symphony Orchestra performs at Berwaldhallen, concert hall of the Swedish Radio, and is a cornerstone of Swedish public service broadcasting. Its concerts are heard weekly on the Swedish classical radio P2 and regularly on national public television SVT. Several concerts are also streamed on-demand on Berwaldhallen Play and broadcast globally through the EBU.


32 professional choristers make up the Swedish Radio Choir: a unique, dynamic instrument hailed by music-lovers and critics all over the world. The Swedish Radio Choir performs at Berwaldhallen, concert hall of the Swedish Radio, as well as on tours all over the country and the world. Also, they are heard regularly by millions of listeners on Swedish Radio P2, Berwaldhallen Play and globally through the EBU.

The award-winning Latvian conductor Kaspars Putniņš was appointed Chief Conductor of the Swedish Radio Choir in 2020. Since January 2019, its choirmaster is French orchestral and choral conductor Marc Korovitch, with responsibility for the choir’s vocal development.

The Swedish Radio Choir was founded in 1925, the same year as Sweden’s inaugural radio broadcasts, and gave its first concert in May that year. Multiple acclaimed and award-winning albums can be found in the choir’s record catalogue. Late 2023 saw the release of Kaspars Putniņš first album with the choir: Robert Schumann’s Missa sacra, recorded with organist Johan Hammarström.


The Eric Ericson Chamber Choir was founded in 1945 by the then 27-year-old Eric Ericson and has since been a prominent hub of the Swedish as well as the international music scene. The ensemble’s interest in continually finding new music and new fields of work has given them a very extensive repertoire: from early music to the very latest. For generations of Swedish and international composers, the choir has represented an ideal with its characteristic Nordic sound and skilful virtuosity. The Eric Ericson Chamber Choir is part of the international elite of professional ensembles. Fredrik Malmberg has been their choirmaster since 2013.

Mikaeli chamber choir is one of Sweden’s most well-reputed choirs, with a broad and accomplished repertoire. Based in Stockholm, the choir comprises 32 experienced singers. Ever since the start in 1970 it has been led by Anders Eby, who is a professor of choral conducting and a conductor and teacher with various international assignments.

The ensemble’s passion for Swedish choral music has led to a large number of first performances, commissions and personal relationships with our greatest composers of choral music. The choir and its conductor also have an interest in historical music, which has contributed to the breadth of its repertoire, treating audiences to everything from female 19th century composers to polyphonic renaissance music.

Over the years, the choir has had extensive collaborations with Swedish orchestras and soloists. Mikaeli chamber choir appears on well over 20 recordings and countless radio performances, as well as concerts and performances on most of Stockholm’s major scenes. In an effort to further these traditions, the choir has also for many years arranged workshops and master classes for young, aspiring conductors.

During almost 50 years, the choir has been a mainstay of Swedish choral life. Since July 2018, Mikaeli chamber choir operates as an independent group.

S:t Jacobs Kammarkör framträder regelbundet vid gudstjänster och konserter i S:t Jacobs Kyrka och Storkyrkan i Stockholm. Körens repertoar består dels av a cappella-stycken från olika stilar och epoker och dels storskaliga verk för kör och orkester. Kören har vunnit flera av Europas främsta körtävlingar och även deltagit i ett stort antal festivaler. S:t Jacobs Kammarkör leds av Gary Graden.

The Chorista Youth Choir consists of young people in secondary or upper secondary school with a passion for singing. The choir performs at church services and concerts at Uppenbarelsekyrkan (the Church of Revelation) in Hägersten, as well  as going on concert trips. Their choirmaster is Kerstin Börjeson.

The Adolf Fredrik Church’s Treble Choir is made up of children aged 9–12. The choir has a high level of ambition and performs single as well as multi-part works for treble chorus. The choir performs on its own, as well as together with a pianist or organist, various instrumental ensembles or orchestras. Their repertoire is aimed at the classic choral tradition but also includes jazz, folk songs, traditional music, etc. The choir is led by Isabel Josephson.

Daniel Harding is Music and Artistic Director of the Swedish Radio Symphony Orchestra, with whom in 2022 he celebrated his 15-year anniversary. In the 2014/2015 season, he devised and curated the celebrated Interplay Festival, featuring concerts and related inspirational talks with renowned artists and academics. As Artistic Director, he continues this type of influential programming. Harding is also Conductor Laureate of the Mahler Chamber Orchestra, with whom he has worked for over 20 years, and Music Director of Youth Music Culture, The Greater Bay Area in China. The 2024/2025 season will be his first as Music Director at the Academia Nazionale di Santa Cecilia in Rome.

Harding is a regular visitor to the world’s foremost orchestras, including the Wiener Philharmoniker, Berliner Philharmoniker, Royal Concertgebouw Orchestra, Symphonieorchester des Bayerischen Rundfunks, Staatskapelle Dresden and the Orchestra Filarmonica della Scala. In the US, he has appeared with the Boston Symphony Orchestra, The Cleveland Orchestra, Chicago Symphony Orchestra, Los Angeles Philharmonic, New York Philharmonic, and the San Francisco Symphony. A renowned opera conductor, he has led acclaimed productions at the Teatro alla Scala Milan, Wiener Staatsoper, Royal Opera House at Covent Garden, and at the Aix-en-Provence and Salzburg Festivals. He was Music Director of the Orchestre de Paris, the Anima Mundi festival of Pisa, and Principal Guest Conductor of the London Symphony Orchestra.

Daniel Harding tours regularly with the Swedish Radio Symphony Orchestra, performing at prestigious venues all over Europe and the world, and has recorded several acclaimed and award-winning albums with the orchestra. His tenure as Music and Artistic Director will last throughout the 2024/2025 season. “It is increasingly rare that the relationship between a conductor and an orchestra not only lasts for more than a decade, but keeps growing,” he says about working with the orchestra.

In 2002, Harding was awarded the title Chevalier de l’Ordre des Arts et des Lettres by the French Government, and in 2017 nominated to the position Officier des Arts et des Lettres. In 2012, he was elected a member of the Royal Swedish Academy of Music. In 2021, he was appointed Commander of the Most Excellent Order of the British Empire. Daniel Harding grew up in Oxford, England, and played trumpet before taking up conducting in his late teens. He is also, since 2016, a qualified airline pilot.

The American dramatic soprano Lise Lindstrom was born and raised in California. She was introduced to the world of music by her mother who is also a singer, as well as music teacher. After studying at San Francisco State University and the San Francisco Conservatory of Music, Lise made a spectacular and highly acclaimed debut at the Metropolitan Opera, where she stood in as princess Turandot with less than two hours’ notice. Her other leading roles include Elektra, Salome and Brünnhilde at operas such as the San Diego Opera, Deutsche Oper Berlin, Wiener Staatsoper, the Royal Opera House, Teatro alla Scala, Hamburg Staatsoper and Arena di Verona.

Performing Mendelssohn’s Elias with the London Philharmonic Orchestra and receiving the Kathleen Ferrier Award in 2002 were two early high points in the career of Scottish mezzo-soprano Karen Cargill. Since then, she has performed with a number of philharmonic orchestras, including in Boston, Philadelphia, Seoul, Rotterdam, Berlin and London. She has worked with prominent conductors such as Myung-Whun Chung, Bernard Haitink, Robin Ticciati and Valery Gergiev. On the operatic stage, Cargill has appeared as Waltraute in Ragnarök at Deutsche Oper, Suzuki in Madama Butterfly at the English National Opera and as Isabella in L’italiana in Algeri at the Scottish Opera.

Canadian contralto Marie-Nicole Lemieux had her breakthrough in Belgium in 2000, when she was awarded first prize in the prestigious Queen Elisabeth Competition. That was the start of an extensive international career during which she performed at venues such as La Scala, the Paris Opera, Gran Teatre del Liceu in Barcelona, as well as at festivals in Salzburg and Glyndebourne, amongst others. Lemieux cultivated her career in baroque music and has gradually taken on the 18th century French and Italian opera repertoire as well. She also performs with great symphony orchestras and conductors and gives chamber concerts with a particular preference for the French, Russian and German repertoire.

The tenor Simon O’Neill from New Zeeland performs on several of the world’s opera stages. He has sung at Teatro alla Scala, the Metropolitan Opera House, the Royal Opera House, Bayerische Staatsoper and the Salzburg as well as the Bayreuth Festival. He is primarily known for the demanding roles of Parsifal and Lohengrin. Simon O’Neill is currently considered one of the world’s finest heroic tenors with his majestic and dense voice. On Queen Elizabeth’s birthday in 2017, he was appointed Officer of the New Zealand Order of Merit for his contribution to music. Besides Wagner roles, Simon O’Neill’s repertoire includes Othello, Florestan in Fidelio, Cavaradossi in Tosca, and Mao in Nixon in China.

The bass barytone Shenyang was born in Tianjin in China and studied at the Shanghai Conservatory of Music. He has played the title role in Mozart’s The Marriage of Figaro at the National Centre for the Performing Arts in Beijing, and at the Metropolitan Opera he played Masetto in Mozart’s Don Giovanni, Garibaldo in Handel’s Rodelinda and Colline in Puccini’s La Bohème. He has also performed Beethoven’s Symphony No. 9 with the Toronto Symphony Orchestra. In 2010, he premièred Xiaogang Ye’s Song of Farewell, which was written for him, with China’s National Symphony Orchestra. The same year, he won the Montblanc New Voices Award at the Stars of the White Nights Festival.

Concert length: 1 h 40 min, no intermission