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

Mozart - Piano Concerto No. 21 in C major, K. 467


"The Concert" by the French painter Nicolas Lancret reflects the popularity of concerts in the 18th century.

Mozart wrote his pianistic compositions for himself and his students. He composed three piano concertos in 1785, including this one, which he presented in Vienna in March of that year.

Piano concertos were apparently Mozart's greatest contribution to instrumental music. It was the style and form of the concertos that the composers - like Beethoven - imitated and emulated in their work. The popularity of the concerto in the 19th century owes much to Mozart's latest works.


IAllegro maestoso

Allegro maestoso's inaugural string-playing music resembles a march, while the entrance of the two woodwinds adds a sense of military band. The piano appears discreetly, at first it does not take on a soloist role but merely contributes to the sound of the orchestra. The first melody of the piano appears soon and acquires a guiding character.

The piano announces a new theme - oddly reminiscent of the original part of the Symphony No. 40. This is contrasted with a brighter music - an extremely attractive piano melody - before the theme of the march is heard again. At this point a final new theme is expanding and developing. Throughout the first movement, the piano is constantly busy, with the soloist's music almost always prominent. An elaborate cadenza leads to the final orchestral section.

II. Andante

The slow Andante is obviously one of the composer's best known - it is also one of his most beautiful. Strings announce the serene original theme. Accompanying deep strings provide the harmonious substrate with kindly repetitive notes. High strings play with surdina, ensuring the softest orchestral "color". The piano repeats the music, accompanied by the string pizzicatto. A second and later a third theme is introduced, before the music returns to the original melody.

III. Allegro assai

With a brief, imposing introduction begins the Allegro assai. The piano suggests its own comment on the theme before the orchestra introduces new material. Throughout the orchestra and piano part they share with each other the important part of the music, while the soloist decorates with scales and grabbings when the orchestra plays the melody. The theme of the introduction is often heard and with it the work ends.