For the six centuries of the Hapsburg Empire Vienna was a lure for artists from all over Europe. In the 18th century it was Mozart who came from neighboring Salzburg. And from nearby Bohemia, Gustav Mahler made Vienna his final creative home in the incredible, fertile decades that saw the 19th century become the 20th. Both were lauded and then discarded by the ever fickle Viennese, but both men did their greatest work to win accolades in Vienna. Mozart’s Concerto No. 17 was written for his own pianistic genius. Not only that, the theme for the finale was supposedly inspired by the regular song of Mozart’s pet starling! Mahler’s Symphony No. 5 garnered him some of his first truly international fame. With it’s fateful opening trumpet fanfare and the famous Adagietto, it justifiably has earned its fame. By the way, the Adagietto, so often played very slowly and used on solemn occasions was never meant by the composer to be a dirge. It is a love letter in music to Mahler’s wife, Alma.