Johann Strauss II Edition, Vol.51 (Adrian Erod/ Ivan Tvrdik/ Jerome Cohen/ Slovak Philharmonic Chorus/ Slovak Radio Symphony Orchestra) (Marco Polo: 8.223279)
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The Johann Strauss Edition
Edition. Volume 51
Johann Strauss II, the most famous and enduringly successfulof 19th-century light music composers, was born in Vienna on 25 October 1825.
Building upon the firm musical foundations laid by his father, Johann Strauss I(1804-1849) and Joseph Lanner (1801-1843), the younger Johann (along with hisbrothers, Josef and Eduard) achieved so high a development of the classicalViennese waltz that it became as much a feature of the concert hall as of theballroom. For more than half a century Johann II captivated not only Vienna butalso the whole of Europe and America with his abundantly tuneful waltzes,polkas, quadrilles and marches. The appeal of his music bridged all socialstrata, and his genius was revered by such masters as Verdi, Brahms and RichardStrauss. The thrice-married 'Waltz King' later turned his attention to thecomposition of operetta, and completed 16 stage works (among them DieFledermaus, Eine Nacht in Venedig and Der Zigeunerbaron) besidesmore than 500 orchestral compositions - including the most famous of allwaltzes, The Blue Danube (1867). Johann Strauss II died in Vienna on 3June 1899.
The Marco Polo Strauss Edition is a milestone in recordinghistory, presenting, for the first time ever, the entire orchestral output ofthe 'Waltz King'. Despite their supremely high standard of musical invention,the majority of the compositions have never before been commercially recordedand have been painstakingly assembled from archives around the world. Allperformances featured in this series are complete and, wherever possible, theworks are played in their original instrumentation as conceived by the 'masterorchestrator' himself, Johann Strauss II.
 "WOKLINGEN DIE LIEDER" nach der POLKA MAZURKA CHAMPÊTRE
op. 239 ('Where songs ring out',based on the Polka Mazurka champêtre op. 239)
Johann Strauss commenced his fourth summer season ofconcerts at the Vauxhall Pavilion in Pavlovsk, near St Petersburg, in early May1860, only returning to his native Vienna at the end of October that year.
During his Russian engagement he delighted his audiences with several newcompositions, amongst them the Polka Mazurka champêtre (RusticPolka-mazurka). It seems likely that Strauss conducted the première of thispiece with the Pavlovsk Strauss Orchestra at his second benefit concert, anevent immediately followed by the first rustic masked festival of the season,on 21 July 1860 (= 9 July, Russian calendar). The fair copy of the score whichthe composer sent for engraving purposes to his Viennese publisher, CarlHaslinger, suggests that Strauss provided for the participation of a smallchorus (of Tyrolean singers?) even at the first performance of the polka. Themanuscript score, which was prepared by a copyist, is for orchestra andfour-part male chorus and bears on its title page the wording (in translation):"Polka Mazurka (champêtre) for Orchestra and Vocal Part by JohannStrauss". The singers did not, however, receive a text: theirvocalisation of "La, la, la, la, la" merely follows themelodic line of the polka-mazurka.
Johann also conducted the first performance of this jollywork in Vienna, when he featured it on 25 November 1860 at a concert given withhis brother Josef in the Volksgarten marking his first public appearance sincereturning from Russia. On this occasion the work was announced (in translation)as a "Polka-mazurka in the style of a Ländler (rustic), with tileparticipation of a 14-voice male chorus". Carl Haslinger issued theoriginal version of the polka-mazurka (without vocal refrain) in a pianoedition on 10 December 1860, and the printed orchestral parts - erroneouslyentitled Polka-Mazur (champêtre) - followed in April of the followingyear. During 1861 Haslinger's publishing house also released, as No. 9 in itsseries of "Liederkranz" (Garland of Songs), an arrangement ofthe Polka Mazurka champêtre for four-part male chorus (2 tenors, 2basses) / vocal quartet and two horns. This time the work had a text by thewriter Ludwig Foglar (1819-89), with whom Johann had become acquainted atHaslinger's house concerts during the 1850s, and had been given the title "Woklingendie Lieder". Though undeniably elegant, Foglar's text is neverthelessrousingly patriotic. The first three verses exhort:
"Wo klingen die Lieder/da laßt euch gern nieder!/
Zögert nicht, Glanz und Licht/schmückt die Welt wieder.
Und schliesset nur fest den Bumd/Herz an Herz und Mund anMund,/
dass ein froher Reigentanz/sei unser Leben ganz.
Frei und einig/Hand in Hand/hütet das Heimatland.
Treu in Noth und Tod,/wenn ein Feind ihmdroht!"
('Where songs ring out/sit yourself down happily!
Do not hesitate, brightness and light/adorn the world again.
And form a firm alliance/Heart to heart and mouth to mouth,/
So that our whole life will be/a happy round dance.
Free and united/hand in hand/keep watch over our motherland.
Loyal in peril and death,/if it is threatened by an enemy!')
Foglar's lines conclude optimistically:
"Friede walte, Freude gestalte/
Freiheit, Freiheit erhalte die Wen! Ja!"
('Peace hold sway, Joy create/
Freedom, freedom preserve the world! Yes!')
It is not known whether Foglar's choral version wasprofessionally performed at the time. Later the Wiener Männergesang-Verein(Vienna Men's Choral Association) occasionally included it in the programmes oftheir concerts, and even recorded it commercially in 1968 with theNiederösterreichische Tonkünstlerorchester under Norbert Balatsch.
Nevertheless, despite such occasional performances, "Wo klingen dieLieder" has remained virtually unknown.
 MANHATTANWALTZES o.op
Despite the phenomenal personal success reaped by JohannStrauss from his conducting engagement at the World's Peace Jubilee andInternational Musical Festival in Boston during June and July 1872, thecomposer did not cherish fond memories of his one and only visit to the UnitedStates of America. As he recounted more than two decades later to OttoEisenschitz, the reporter for the Deutsche Zeitung (4.02.1894):
"Nobody could have kept me there any longer. T