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The Karajan Collection - Strauss, Et Al: Waltzes & Polkas


Release Date: 10/25/2005 
Label:  Emi Classics   Catalog #: 76879   Spars Code: ADD 
Composer:  Johann Strauss Jr.Josef Strauss
Conductor:  Herbert von Karajan
Orchestra/Ensemble:  Vienna Philharmonic Orchestra
Number of Discs: 1 
Recorded in: Mono 
Length: 1 Hours 16 Mins. 

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Notes and Editorial Reviews





This collection of waltzes and polkas by the immensely gifted Strauss brothers was not conceived as a single program. The recordings were produced for English Columbia by Walter Legge in several sessions from 1946 to 1949, as the musical life of Vienna was recovering from the ravages of World War II. They were conceived to fit 12-inch, shellac 78-rpm discs; England did not see domestic long playing records until 1950. There are no repeats, and sometimes no further abridgments.


Yet, this program is of much more than historic interest. Perhaps in Read more reaction to the horrors of war, the 38-year old Herbert von Karajan and the venerable Vienna Philharmonic brought a zest and warmth to these performances notably above their usual high standard. The recording engineers were also at their best, placing their microphones to capture an abundance of distinctive individual voices within the orchestra, as well as a satisfying overall blend of sound. It reminds me of an observation made over 50 years ago by Peter Bartók, that every mode of recording has produced its occasional great results.


It is no accident that Karajan worked as diligently on Strauss waltzes and polkas as on the symphonies of Beethoven and Brahms. The conductors of central Europe routinely played these works as encores or in popular concerts; many of them left fine recordings, including Hans Knappertsbusch, Erich Kleiber, Carl Schuricht, Josef Krips, Eugene Ormandy, and Bruno Walter. The serious collector who introduced me to these riches half a century ago pointed out that a Viennese waltz should make one feel the dancers were moving without touching the ground. That happens here, and much other magic besides. Urgently recommended.


FANFARE: Robert McColley
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Works on This Recording

1. An der schönen, blauen Donau, Op. 314 by Johann Strauss Jr.
Conductor:  Herbert von Karajan
Orchestra/Ensemble:  Vienna Philharmonic Orchestra
Period: Romantic 
Written: 1867; Vienna, Austria 
2. Wiener Blut, Op. 354 by Johann Strauss Jr.
Conductor:  Herbert von Karajan
Orchestra/Ensemble:  Vienna Philharmonic Orchestra
Period: Romantic 
Written: 1873; Vienna, Austria 
3. Kaiser-Walzer, Op. 437 by Johann Strauss Jr.
Conductor:  Herbert von Karajan
Orchestra/Ensemble:  Vienna Philharmonic Orchestra
Period: Romantic 
Written: 1889; Vienna, Austria 
4. Geschichten aus dem Wienerwald, Op. 325 by Johann Strauss Jr.
Conductor:  Herbert von Karajan
Orchestra/Ensemble:  Vienna Philharmonic Orchestra
Period: Romantic 
Written: 1868; Vienna, Austria 
5. Perpetuum mobile, Op. 257 "Musikalischer Scherz" by Johann Strauss Jr.
Conductor:  Herbert von Karajan
Orchestra/Ensemble:  Vienna Philharmonic Orchestra
Period: Romantic 
Written: 1862; Vienna, Austria 
6. Wein, Weib und Gesang, Op. 333 by Johann Strauss Jr.
Conductor:  Herbert von Karajan
Orchestra/Ensemble:  Vienna Philharmonic Orchestra
Period: Romantic 
Written: 1869; Vienna, Austria 
7. Leichtes Blut, Op. 319 by Johann Strauss Jr.
Conductor:  Herbert von Karajan
Orchestra/Ensemble:  Vienna Philharmonic Orchestra
Period: Romantic 
Written: 1867; Vienna, Austria 
8. Unter Donner und Blitz, Op. 324 by Johann Strauss Jr.
Conductor:  Herbert von Karajan
Orchestra/Ensemble:  Vienna Philharmonic Orchestra
Period: Romantic 
Written: 1868; Vienna, Austria 
9. Tritsch-Tratsch-Polka, Op. 214 by Johann Strauss Jr.
Conductor:  Herbert von Karajan
Orchestra/Ensemble:  Vienna Philharmonic Orchestra
Period: Romantic 
Written: 1858; Vienna, Austria 
10. Sphären-Klänge, Op. 235 by Josef Strauss
Conductor:  Herbert von Karajan
Orchestra/Ensemble:  Vienna Philharmonic Orchestra
Period: Romantic 
Written: 1868; Vienna, Austria 
11. Transaktionen, Op. 184 by Josef Strauss
Conductor:  Herbert von Karajan
Orchestra/Ensemble:  Vienna Philharmonic Orchestra
Period: Romantic 
Written: 1865; Vienna, Austria 
12. Delirien, Op. 212 by Josef Strauss
Conductor:  Herbert von Karajan
Orchestra/Ensemble:  Vienna Philharmonic Orchestra
Period: Romantic 
Written: 1867; Vienna, Austria 
13. Pizzicato Polka by Johann Strauss Jr.
Conductor:  Herbert von Karajan
Orchestra/Ensemble:  Vienna Philharmonic Orchestra
Period: Romantic 
Written: 1870; Vienna, Austria 
Notes: This work was written in collaboration with Josef Strauss (1827 - 1870). 

Sound Samples

An der schönen, blauen Donau - Walzer Op. 314 (1997 Digital Remaster)
Wiener Blut - Walzer Op.354 (1997 Digital Remaster)
Pizzicato Polka (1997 Digital Remaster)
Kaiser, 'Emperor' Op. 437 (1997 Digital Remaster)
G'schichten aus dem Wienerwald, 'Tales from the Vienna Woods' Op. 325 (1997 Digital Remaster)
Perpetuum mobile Op. 257 (1997 Digital Remaster)
Wein, Weib und Gesang Op. 333 (1997 Digital Remaster)
Leichtes Blut, 'Light as a feather' Op. 319 (1997 Digital Remaster)
Sphären-Klänge, 'Music of the Spheres' Op. 235 (1997 Digital Remaster)
Transaktionen, 'Transactions' Op. 184 (1997 Digital Remaster)
Delirien, 'Delirious' Op. 212 (1997 Digital Remaster)
Unter Donner und Blitz Op. 324 (1997 Digital Remaster)
Tritsch-Tratsch Op. 214 (1997 Digital Remaster)

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