Johann Strauss II - Kaiser-Walzer (Emperor Waltz), Op. 437

Strauss often played in the glittering Imperial balls, conducting the orchestra and playing the first violin at the same time.   The majestic launch of this fascinating waltz presents the backdrop of the celebration of the 40th anniversary of the hegemony of the Austrian Emperor Franz Joseph in 1888. Johann Strauss II was Music Director of the Dance Hesperides of the Imperial Court from 1863 to 1872 and composed on occasion for the celebration of an imperial anniversary. The ingenuity of the melody of the Emperor Waltz, which was originally orchestrated for a full orchestra, is such that it was easily adapted for the four or five instruments of a chamber ensemble by the Austrian composer Arnold Schoenberg in 1925. This waltz is a tender and somewhat melancholic work, which at times turns its gaze nostalgically to the old Vienna. The waltz praises the majesty and dignity of the old monarch, who was fully devoted to his people. It begins with a majestic, magnificent march, which soon re

Hector Berlioz - introduction

Portrait of Hector Berlioz

Transcending the boundaries of the classical measure, Hector Berlioz was indifferent to the laws that defined in the first half of the 19th century the fine-sounding and musical beauty. It is therefore justified for his work to be challenged by his contemporaries.

The retrospective effort to approach his music, reveals reform proposals fermented with transparent persuasiveness and disarming sincerity.

The passion and the sensitivity that often defined the paths of his life spontaneously gush from his music. In his works we immediately trace the love of color and dramatic contrasts, original sounds and shadows, expressive ingredients that give imposing character and emerge miraculously through the pioneering and exciting orchestrations with wich he benefited his music. However, he so often resorted to exaggerations, which weakened the classical purity of his melodic findings.

Besides of being a fiery romantic composer, Berlioz was also an intellectual. His excellent education and ability to handle the language, exemplary helped him to put his ideas in great writing, even for today's data, musical essays such as "Evening with the Orchestra" (Paris, 1852), "The conductor: theory of his art" (Paris, 1856), "The grotesques of music" (Paris, 1859), "Memoirs" (Paris, 1870).