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STRAUSS, Josef: Edition - Vol. 25 (Michael Dittrich/ Rudolf Hentsel/ Slovak State Philharmonic Orchestra) (Marco Polo: 8.223664)

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Josef Strauss (1827-1870)

Orchestral Works Vol. 25

[1] Die Windsbraut, Polka (schnell) (The Wind’s Bride, Quick Polka), Op. 221

On the occasion of the charity masquerade ball held on 4th February 1867 in the overcrowded Colosseum of the industrious entrepreneur Carl Schwender in Fünfhaus, Josef Strauss thoroughly challenged the dancing couples with his new quick polka Die Windsbraut. The marked rhythms of this joyful composition guaranteed a good mood and some additional jokes in the audience. It is not known whether any of the visitors at the suburban establishment tried to explain the title. The dictionary defines a Wind’s Bride as follows: "Storm - in poetic language". Those who consult Johann Wolfgang von Goethe will find the following verse in his Faust:

"How races the wind’s bride through the air,

with what blows she beats my neck!"

One did not need to resort to Goethe’s Faust, however, to enjoy a fun-filled evening at Schwender’s. The brisk rhythm and the characteristic melody lines were sufficient to incite applause for the composer, and several spontaneous encores of the work took place in response to the audience’s enthusiasm. Die Windsbraut, however, did not become famous.

[2] Die Tanz-Interpellanten, Walzer (The Dance Petitioners. Waltz), Op. 120

Josef Strauss composed the waltz Die Tanz-Interpellanten for the balls of the 1862 Carnival. On 17th January 1862, a preview of the ball programmes appeared in the Fremden-Blatt. In it the novelties to be expected from Johann and Josef Strauss were enumerated, mentioning as Josef’s first work the waltz Die Tanz-Interpellanten. Unfortunately no mention was made in the article regarding for which evening the work was scheduled, nor is its title of much help. "Interpellants" are petitioners (e.g., in parliament), but also people who present a specific objection (e.g., in court). If the waltz had been destined for the lawyers’ ball, it would have been provided with a pertinent dedication. (Johann Strauss had composed the waltz Colonnen, Op. 262, for the 1862 lawyers’ ball). Perhaps Josef’s work was played at a grandiose masquerade ball that was held during this Carnival Season in the Theater an der Wien, but no proof of this assumption exists.

On 19th February 1862, an invitation by the brothers Johann and Josef Strauss to their charity ball to be held on 25th February in the Sofiensaal appeared in all the newspapers. Two big orchestras would play, as promised, one conducted by Johann, and the other, under Josef Strauss’s baton. Together, both conductors would perform fifty dance pieces, including all the novelties of the 1862 Carnival Season. From Josef Strauss, the waltzes Die Tanz-Interpellanten and Hesperus-Ball-Tänze, Op. 116, were expected. Again, it was not noted for which ball Tanz-Interpellanten was destined. One may suppose that the work was first performed during the 1862 Carnival, because it is highly unlikely that a waltz of this calibre was not presented to the public until as late as 25th February in the Sofiensaal. Neither the composer’s notes nor those of the horn player Franz Sabay contain any indications in this regard. In the reports on the Strauss ball of 25th February, only one work was specially singled out, and that was Josef Strauss’s Sturm-Polka, Op. 75, from the year 1859.

[3] Margherita-Polka, Op. 244

Josef Strauss composed the graceful Margherita Polka for the marriage of Prince Umberto of Italy (1844 - 1900) to Princess Margherita (1851 - 1926), the daughter of the Duke of Genoa, which took place on 22nd April 1868. The composer tried several times afterwards to present the work to the couple, but we do not know whether he ever succeeded in performing the polka in Italy. Since a visit to Vienna planned by the future King of Italy and his wife did not come to fruition, Josef Strauss finally chose the first promenade concert of his orchestra in the Blumensäle of the Garden Society on 13th June and his charity concert on 19th June 1868 in the Volksgarten, to present the work to the public. The polka, however, disappeared astonishingly quickly from the programmes of the Strauss orchestra. Of the editions by the publisher C.A. Spina, which appeared without any dedications, only the original piano editions remain. The orchestral parts of the polka were found in later copies.

[4] Pauline, Polka Mazur (Polka Mazurka), Op. 190

Her Highness the Princess Pauline Metternich-Winneburg, née Countess Sandor, sponsored the Industrialists’ Ball, held on 28th January 1866 in the Redoutensaal. The proceeds of the ball were ear-marked for a pet project of the active and extremely influential wife of the Austrian ambassador to the Parisian court, Richard Prince Metternich-Winneburg, namely the foundation of a German hospital in the French capital. Naturally the Strauss orchestra was appointed to provide the music for the Industrialists’ Ball in the Vienna Hofburg, and Josef Strauss had also prepared the traditional dedication waltz, which, according to the purpose of the festivity, received the title Deutsche Grüsse, Op. 191. Since the brothers Johann and Josef Strauss were eager to make a triumphant appearance in Paris at the 1867 World’s Fair with Princess Metternich’s help, Johann Strauss wrote another waltz, Wiener Bonbons, Op. 307, and Josef Strauss added to his Deutsche Grüsse a polka mazurka titled Pauline. All these compositions were dedicated to the Princess and were performed at the Industrialists’ Ball on 28th January 1866 in the Redoutensaal. On 31st January 1866 the publisher C.A. Spina released a piano edition of the polka mazurka Pauline.

Josef Strauss, however, also wrote a second polka mazurka called Pauline. This composition appeared, with the dedication to Princess Pauline on the title page of the piano edition, on 15th February 1866. The orchestral parts followed on 7th July 1866. Since a polka mazurka under the title Pauline was very rarely found in the programmes of the Strauss orchestra, it cannot be clear which version Josef Strauss ultimately regarded as valid. It may have been the second one. The occasion on which this version was first played has not yet been determined.

[5] Soll und Haben, Walzer (Debit and Credit. Waltz), Op. 68

The business sector of Vienna suffered long and hard during the economic crisis which beset Austria starting in approximately 1846. It was not until 1855 that merchants, from wholesalers to sales personnel, had recovered sufficiently to recognise the growing importance of the merchant class with their own ball to be held at Sperl’s during the Carnival season. On that occasion, Johann Strauss played his high-spirited Handels-Elite-Quadrille, Op. 166, for the first time at Sperl’s. On 21st February 1859, another ball of this kind was held, this time in the elegant Sofiensaal. The Strauss orchestra was again hired to provide the music, but Johann Strauss did not appear before his musicians on this evening, leaving the ball to his brother Josef, who contributed the traditional dedication piece, the waltz Soll und Haben.

On the following day, the Theaterzeitung had this to say, among other things: "The attendance was quite numerous. Overcrowding, however, was not a problem and did not interfere with the guests’ dancing enjoyment, especially by youthful revellers. The festival took place amidst unspoilt and unbridled merriment. The dresses of the ladies were splendid. Of the waltzes presented by Strauss for this occasion, the one entitled Soll und Haben was the best".
Item number 8223664
Barcode 730099366427
Release date 25/10/2002
Media type CD
Number of units 1
Disc: 1
Die Souberette, Polka schnell, Op. 109
1 Die Windsbraut, Polka schnell, Op. 221
2 Die Tanzinterpellanten, Walzer, Op. 120
3 Margherita, Polka francaise, Op. 244
4 Pauline, Polka mazur, Op. 190
5 Soll und Haben, Walzer, Op. 68
6 Faust-Quadrille, Op. 112
7 Hesperus Balltanze, Walzer, Op. 116
8 Mein schones Wien, Albumblatt
9 Heilmethoden, Walzer, Op. 189
10 Euterpe, Polka mazur, Op. 82
11 Die Souberette, Polka schnell, Op. 109
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