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Gustav Mahler was born 150 years ago. He died 100 years ago, in 1911. This is a big Mahler year, with all sorts of commemorations of the composer's life and music. Gerard Schwarz, who recently stepped down as music director of the Seattle Symphony, chose a Mahler symphony for his farewell performance. People are so strongly drawn to Mahler because the composer expresses every one of his emotions in larger–than–life music. Seattle Weekly music critic and composer Gavin Borchert says there's nothing in our culture that compares to experiencing a performance of Mahler's music. Gavin speaks with KUOW's Dave Beck.