Strauss, Johann II

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Strauss, Johann II (b Vienna, 1825; d Vienna, 1899). Austrian composer, conductor, and violinist, eldest son of Johann Strauss, and deservedly known as ‘the Waltz King’. Because his father did not want his sons to choose mus. as career, worked as bank clerk but learned vn. secretly and studied comp. with Drechsler. In 1844 formed own orch. of 24 and appeared as cond. of his own and his father's waltzes in rivalry to his father (they also supported opposing sides in the 1848 revolution). When his father died, amalgamated both orchs. and toured Austria, Poland, and Ger. In 1855 engaged to direct summer concerts in Petropaulovsky Park, St Petersburg, for 10 years. Cond. of Austrian court balls 1863–72. Comp. nearly 400 waltzes which have come to epitomize Viennese gaiety and sentiment. Visited Paris 1867, London 1867, USA 1872. Turned to stage 1871, when first of a series of successful operettas was produced at the Theater an der Wien, the most famous being Die Fledermaus (1874). Of his waltzes, the Blue Danube (1867), Roses from the South (1880), the great Emperor Waltz (1888), and Tales from the Vienna Woods (1868) are beloved wherever mus. is played, as are his polkas and other dances. Was friend and admirer of Wagner, who, like Brahms and other composers incl. Schoenberg, were what we should now call ‘fans’ of Strauss, recognizing a supreme master of a genre who comp. with style, elegance, taste, and wit. Prin. works:OPERETTAS: Indigo und die vierzig Räuber (1871); Der Karneval in Rom (1873); Die Fledermaus (1873–4); Cagliostro in Wien (1875); Prinz Methusalem (1877); Blindekuh (1878); Das Spitzentuch der Königin (1880); Der lustige Krieg (1881); Eine Nacht in Venedig (1883); Der Zigeunerbaron (1885); Simplicuis (1887); Ritter Pazman (1892); Fürstin Ninetta (1893); Jauka (1894); Waldmeister (1895); Die Götten der Vernunft (1897).BALLET: Cinderella (1899; completed as Aschenbrödel by J. Bayer, f.p. Berlin 1901, f. Eng. p. Manchester 1979).WALTZES: Abschied von St Petersburg, Op.210; Accelerationen, Op.234; An der schönen blauen Donau (On the beautiful Blue Danube), Op.314; Architektenball-Tänze, Op.36; Cagliostro, Op.370; Erinnerung an Covent Garden, Op.139; Freuet euch des Lebens, Op.340; Frühlingsstimmen (Voices of Spring), Op.410; Geschichten aus dem Wienerwald (Tales From the Vienna Woods), Op.325; Grossfürstin Alexandra, Op.181; Hofballtänze, Op.298; Juristenballtänze, Op.177; Kaiser-Walzer (Emperor Waltz) Op.437; Kronungslieder, Op.184; Künstlerleben, Op.316; Der Kuss, Op.400; Lagunen, Op.411; Liebesliederwalzer, Op.114; Morgenblätter (Morning Papers), Op.279; Nordseebilder, Op.380; O schöner Mai, Op.365; Rathausballtänze, Op.438; Rosen aus dem Süden (Roses from the South), Op.388; Schneeglockchen, Op.143; Seid umschlungen Millionen, Op.443; Wein, Weib und Gesang (Wine, Woman and Song), Op.333; Wiener Blut (Vienna Blood), Op.354; Wiener Bonbons, Op.307; Wo die Zitronen blüh'n, Op.364.POLKAS: Aesculap, Op.130; Annen, Op.117; Armenball, Op.176; Aurora, Op.165; Bürgerball, Op.145; Champagne, Op.211; Damenspende, Op.305; Demolierer, Op.269; Electropher, Op.297; Explosionen, Op.43; Figaro, Op.320; Juristenball, Op.280; Lagerlust, Op.431; Leichtes Blut, Op.319; Pizzicato Polka (with Josef Strauss); Tritsch, Tratsch, Op.214; Unter Donner und Blitz (Thunder and Lightning), Op.324.

Also, marches, galops, and Perpetuum Mobile, Op. 257.

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Strauss, Johann II

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