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

Georg Philipp Telemann - Introduction

In his time the German composer Georg Philipp Telemann was more popular even than his co-local and contemporary Johann Sebastian Bach. In fact, he was offered the position of Kantor in the church of St. Thomas of Leipzig and only his refusal - he bid Hamburg to keep him close - resulted in Bach's recruitment.

Baroque music discovered in Telemann a genuine, inspiring, unbound and accomplished composer. His ability to co-talk creatively with any kind of musical expression was truly enviable. Cosmic and religious, instrumental and vocal music had no secrets for him. Testimony undeniable are his works, the ones that were saved. They provoke immediate admiration both with the variety of their style and with their quantity.

He composed a thousand and seven hundred or so Cantatas, numerous operas - forty only for the Hamburg Opera - and a host of others extremely prolific and pioneered in the effort to detox the composers from the royal courtyards and the patrons.

Telemann's music was strongly challenged as devoid of substance and content. But music isn't meant for the few. And there's no doubt Telemann's music was written for everyone. Charming, spontaneous, gentle, light, often graceful, with a wide range of colour and rhythmic moods, it miraculously match the characteristics of the French and Italian style that his century. Besides, it was one of the important harbingers of classicism.