The trumpet fanfares in the first movement of Mahler's Seventh Symphony remind us less of Vienna around 1900 than of science fiction from America. Film composers would later launch their star cruisers to the accompaniment of similar sounds. It’s a fitting comparison, since Mahler always combined high art with the popular. He justified such melanges with reference to an all-encompassing “world” that was contained in each of his symphonies. And thus we find cowbells, a guitar, and a mandolin in the Seventh Symphony. In Baden-Baden, the name of Gustav Mahler is primarily associated with Michael Gielen and Pierre Boulez. Both conductors performed his symphonies many times with the SWR ensembles – a tradition that François-Xavier Roth is now continuing.