Johann Strauss Jr.

Biography

Born: Oct 25, 1825; Austria   Died: Jun 3, 1899; Austria   Period: Romantic
Johann Strauss, Jr. is the first truly well-known composer in those classical genres particular to his hometown, the Viennese waltz and Viennese operetta. The Blue Danube Waltz is not only the most popular of his works in the former category, but is among the most widely played and arranged pieces of its time, known to the most casual listener today from many radio, film and television uses of it.

Johann Strauss, Jr. was born in Vienna on Read more October 25, 1825. He showed remarkable skills early in his childhood, despite his father's opposition to any career in music for any of his three sons. Johann, Sr. wanted him to become a banker, but the younger Strauss had his own ideas, taking violin lessons in secret from a player in his father's band. When Strauss was 17 his father left the family, thus allowing him to begin serious study without encumbrance. His mother, a good amateur violinist who had always encouraged him, remained supportive. Strauss now studied theory with Joseph Drechsler and took violin lessons from Anton Kohlmann. In 1844 young Johann led his first concert and a year later formed his own band, thereby competing with his father's orchestra. He was also writing his own quadrilles, mazurkas, polkas, and waltzes for performance by his ensemble, even conducting works by his father, and receiving praise from the press. He was given the honorary position of Bandmaster of the 2nd Vienna Citizens' Regiment (his father was bandmaster of the 1st regiment) in 1845, and in 1847 began composing for the Vienna Men's Choral Association.

His real success began in 1849 after Johann Strauss, Sr. died. Johann, Jr. merged his father's orchestra with his own and took up his father's contracts. His career moved along smoothly for the next several years, but in 1853 he became seriously ill and turned over conducting duties to his younger brother, Josef, for six months. After his recovery he resumed fully both his conducting and his composing activities, eventually gaining the respect of such composers as Brahms, Wagner, and Verdi for his seemingly unlimited imagination for using melodies.

Strauss married singer Henriette "Jetty" Treffz in August 1862, and they settled in Hietzing. Thereafter, she became his business manager and apparently a great inspiration, drawing him toward operetta, just as Viennese theater operators were becoming tired of the works of Offenbach. His first, Indigo und die vierzig Räuber, came in 1871, and his most famous, Die Fledermaus, was staged three years later with great success. Eine Nacht in Venedig (1883) and Der Zigeunerbaron (1885) were his only other international operetta hits.

In 1872, he traveled to the United States and led highly successful concerts in Boston and New York. For all the success that came in the 1870s for Strauss, there was also much grief: his mother and brother Josef died in 1870, and his wife died suddenly of a heart attack in 1878. Her death devastated him, and the suddenly helpless composer unwisely married the much-younger actress Angelika Dittrich, six weeks later. The marriage lasted only four years, though it may have saved the composer from personal disaster in the months following his wife's death.

Strauss, a Roman Catholic, left the church and had to give up his Austrian citizenship to marry Adele Deutsch in 1887, owing to the Church's unwillingness to recognize his divorce. His new wife, with whom he had lived for a long period before their marriage, seemed to inspire him much like his first wife. In his last years, Strauss remained quite productive and active. He was working on a ballet, Cinderella, when he developed a respiratory ailment which grew into pneumonia. He died on June 3, 1899. Read less

The Strauss Family In London / Georgiadis, London So
Release Date: 06/29/2004   Label: Chandos Collect  
Catalog: 6691   Number of Discs: 1
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Strauss: Die Fledermaus / Haider, Mikolaj, Reiss, Edelmann, Holecek
Release Date: 01/28/2014   Label: Capriccio Records  
Catalog: 5167   Number of Discs: 2
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Vienna Premiere Vol 1 / Rothstein, Johann Strauss Orchestra
Release Date: 07/06/2009   Label: Chandos  
Catalog: 8381   Number of Discs: 1
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Vienna Premieres Vols. 1, 2 & 3 / Rothstein, Johann Strauss Orchestra
Release Date: 07/26/2011   Label: Chandos  
Catalog: 10684   Number of Discs: 3
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Karajan: Mozart, Beethoven, Schubert, Brahms, R. Strauss, Opera Arias - 1946-1949
Release Date: 04/08/2014   Label: Warner Classics  
Catalog: 633618   Number of Discs: 10
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Work: Gypsy Baron Overture (Der Zigeunerbaron)

Browse 1-25 of 66 Available Recordings
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  • 1.
    Karajan 1951-1960: Mozart, Schubert, Brahms, Strauss, Wagner
    Label: Warner Classics   Catalog: 633623 Release Date: 05/13/2014   Number of Discs: 12
    Composer:  Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart,  Richard Strauss,  Richard Wagner,  Johannes Brahms  ... 
    Conductor:  Herbert von Karajan
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Berlin Philharmonic Orchestra,  Philharmonia Orchestra
    On sale! $74.99
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  • 2.
    Karajan: Mozart, Beethoven, Schubert, Brahms, R. Strauss, Opera Arias - 1946-1949
    Label: Warner Classics   Catalog: 633618 Release Date: 04/08/2014   Number of Discs: 10
    Composer:  Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart,  Ludwig van Beethoven,  Franz Schubert,  Johannes Brahms  ... 
    Performer:  Leopold Wlach,  Julius Patzak,  Elisabeth Schwarzkopf,  Elisabeth Höngen  ... 
    Conductor:  Herbert von Karajan
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Vienna Philharmonic Orchestra,  Friends of Music Chorus
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  • 3.
    Bruno Walter - The Edition
    Label: Sony   Catalog: 548952 Release Date: 07/02/2013   Number of Discs: 39
    Composer:  Johannes Brahms,  Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart,  Franz Schubert,  Ludwig van Beethoven  ... 
    Performer:  Walter Hendl,  John Corigliano Sr.,  Leonard Rose,  Martha Lipton  ... 
    Conductor:  Bruno Walter
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Columbia Symphony Orchestra,  Occidental College Consort,  New York Philharmonic  ... 
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  • 4.
    Legendary Moments From The New Year's Concerts / Vienna Philharmonic [3 CDs & 1 DVD]
    Label: Sony   Catalog: 795206 Release Date: 01/04/2013   Number of Discs: 4
    Composer:  Johann Strauss Jr.,  Josef Strauss,  Johann Strauss Sr.,  Josef Lanner  ... 
    Performer:  Kathleen Battle,  Lorin Maazel,  Werner Hink
    Conductor:  Carlos Kleiber,  Herbert von Karajan,  Lorin Maazel,  Zubin Mehta
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Vienna Philharmonic Orchestra
    CD: $16.99
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  • 5.
    Schubert: Symphony no 8; Johann Strauss, Josef Strauss / Karajan, Vienna PO
    Label: Deutsche Grammophon   Catalog: 439104 Release Date: 12/05/2012   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Franz Schubert,  Johann Strauss Jr.,  Josef Strauss,  Johann Strauss Sr.
    Conductor:  Herbert von Karajan
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Vienna Philharmonic Orchestra
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  • 6.
    Label: Motif (Design)   Catalog: 1198585 Release Date: 11/06/2012   Number of Discs: 3
    Composer:  Franz Xaver Gruber,  André Rieu,  Franz Schubert,  Irving Berlin  ... 
    Performer:  André Rieu
    Conductor:  Joseph Francek,  Norbert Neukamp
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  • 7.
    Strauss Family: Favourite Dances
    Label: Marco Polo   Catalog: 8225353 Release Date: 10/30/2012   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Johann Strauss Jr.,  Josef Strauss,  Johann Strauss Sr.
    Conductor:  Johannes Wildner
    CD: $17.99
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  • 8.
    50 Best Overtures & Preludes
    Label: Emi Classics   Catalog: 27368 Release Date: 05/22/2012   Number of Discs: 3
    Composer:  Gioachino Rossini,  Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart,  Gaetano Donizetti,  Vincenzo Bellini  ... 
    Conductor:  Carlo Maria Giulini,  Gianluigi Gelmetti,  Lamberto Gardelli,  Sir Colin Davis  ... 
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  • 9.
    Best Overtures 100
    Label: Emi Classics   Catalog: 27333 Release Date: 05/22/2012   Number of Discs: 6
    Composer:  Gioachino Rossini,  Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart,  Gaetano Donizetti,  Vincenzo Bellini  ... 
    Conductor:  Carlo Maria Giulini,  Gianluigi Gelmetti,  Lamberto Gardelli,  Sir Colin Davis  ... 
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Philharmonia Orchestra,  Stuttgart Radio Symphony Orchestra,  Royal Philharmonic Orchestra  ... 
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  • 10.
    Ballroom Classics / Willi Boskovsky, Wiener Johann Strauss Orchester
    Label: Emi Classics   Catalog: 56571 Release Date: 04/10/2012   Number of Discs: 11
    Composer:  Johann Strauss Sr.,  Johann Strauss Jr.,  Josef Strauss,  Eduard Strauss  ... 
    Conductor:  Willi Boskovsky
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Johann Strauss Orchestra Vienna,  Vienna Symphony Orchestra,  Munich Radio Symphony Orchestra  ... 
    On sale! $57.98
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  • 11.
    J. Strauss Jr.: Voices Of Spring / Guth, Royal Philharmonic Orchestra
    Label: Royal Philharmonic Masterworks   Catalog: 29250 Release Date: 02/14/2012   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Johann Strauss Jr.,  Johann Strauss Sr.
    Conductor:  Peter Guth
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Royal Philharmonic Orchestra
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  • 12.
    Essential Johann Strauss II
    Label: Emi Classics   Catalog: 78139 Release Date: 02/07/2012   Number of Discs: 2
    Composer:  Johann Strauss Jr.
    Performer:  Nicolai Gedda,  Rudolf Schock,  Fritz Wunderlich,  Lucia Popp  ... 
    Conductor:  Willi Boskovsky,  Franz Allers,  Rudolf Kempe,  Fried Walter  ... 
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  • 13.
    Viennese Night at the BBC Proms
    Label: Ica Classics   Catalog: 5026 Release Date: 06/28/2011   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Johann Strauss Jr.,  Franz Lehár,  Johann Strauss Sr.,  Franz von Suppé
    Performer:  Sheila Armstrong
    Conductor:  James Loughran,  Walter Susskind,  Janos Fürst
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Hallé Orchestra,  Royal Philharmonic Orchestra,  BBC Northern Symphony
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  • 14.
    J. Strauss Jr.: Complete Orchestral Edition [52-CD Set]
    Label: Naxos   Catalog: 8505226 Release Date: 04/26/2011   Number of Discs: 52
    Composer:  Johann Strauss Jr.,  Robert Schumann,  Olga Smirnitzkaja
    Performer:  Jozef Sikora,  Regina Jauslin,  Viktor Simcisko,  Katarína Vavreková  ... 
    Conductor:  Alfred Walter,  Richard Edlinger,  Oliver Dohnányi,  Johannes Wildner  ... 
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Kosice Slovak State Philharmonic Orchestra,  Polish National Philharmonic Orchestra Katowice,  Bratislava Slovak State Symphony Orchestra  ... 
    CD: $148.99
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  • 15.
    Strauss Collection - Early Recordings On 78s (1901-1951)
    Label: Opus Kura   Catalog: 1006/13 Release Date: 04/12/2011   Number of Discs: 8
    Composer:  Johann Strauss Jr.,  Spoken Word,  Josef Strauss,  Johann Strauss Sr.
    Performer:  Irene Eisinger,  Dajos Bela,  Barnabas Von Geczy,  Marcella Sembrich  ... 
    Conductor:  Clemens Krauss,  Howard Barlow,  Erich Leinsdorf,  Harry Horlick  ... 
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Kölner Klavier-Trio
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  • 16.
    Wien, Stadt Meiner Traume
    Label: Gramola   Catalog: 98908 Release Date: 04/12/2011   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Johann Strauss Jr.,  Franz Lehár,  Robert Stolz,  Walter Jurmann  ... 
    Performer:  Akiko Nakajima,  Wolfgang Rauball
    Conductor:  Niels Muus
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  • 17.
    Early Orchestral Recordings 1927-1943
    Label: Deutsche Grammophon   Catalog: 459001 Release Date: 07/06/2009   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Johann Strauss Jr.,  Richard Strauss,  Otto Nicolai,  Ottorino Respighi  ... 
    Conductor:  Herbert von Karajan,  Richard Strauss,  Paul van Kempen,  Victor de Sabata  ... 
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Berlin Philharmonic Orchestra,  Bavarian State Orchestra,  Berlin Staatskapelle Orchestra  ... 
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  • 18.
    Johann Strauss: Waltzes, Polkas & Overtures
    Label: Zig Zag   Catalog: 2020601 Release Date: 06/30/2009   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Johann Strauss Jr.
    Conductor:  Jos van Immerseel
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Anima Eterna Orchestra
    CD: $18.99
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  • 19.
    New Year's Concert 2009 / Barenboim, Vienna Philharmonic
    Label: Decca   Catalog: 001257009 Release Date: 02/10/2009  
    Composer:  Johann Strauss Jr.,  Franz Joseph Haydn,  Josef Strauss,  Johann Strauss Sr.  ... 
    Conductor:  Daniel Barenboim
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Vienna Philharmonic Orchestra
    DVD: $29.99
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  • 20.
    New Year's Concert 2009 / Barenboim, Vienna Philharmonic
    Label: Decca   Catalog: 001256902 Release Date: 01/13/2009   Number of Discs: 2
    Composer:  Johann Strauss Jr.,  Franz Joseph Haydn,  Josef Strauss,  Johann Strauss Sr.  ... 
    Conductor:  Daniel Barenboim
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Vienna Philharmonic Orchestra
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  • 21.
    Lehár: Die Lustige Witwe; Johann Strauss Jr: Waltzes / Welser-möst
    Label: Emi Classics   Catalog: 20974 Release Date: 06/10/2008   Number of Discs: 2
    Composer:  Franz Lehár,  Johann Strauss Jr.
    Performer:  Thomas Hampson,  Robert Poulton,  Rudolf Schasching,  Elzbieta Szmytka  ... 
    Conductor:  Franz Welser-Möst
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  London Philharmonic Orchestra,  Glyndebourne Festival Chorus
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  • 22.
    Karajan - Complete Emi Recordings 1946-84 Vol 1 - Orchestral Works
    Label: Emi Classics   Catalog: 12038 Release Date: 04/01/2008   Number of Discs: 88
    Composer:  Johann Strauss Jr.,  Josef Strauss,  E. Nikolaus von Reznicek,  Johannes Brahms  ... 
    Performer:  Karl Leister,  Elisabeth Schwarzkopf,  Ernst Haefliger,  Anne-Sophie Mutter  ... 
    Conductor:  Herbert von Karajan
    On sale! $253.98
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  • 23.
    Karajan - The Legendary Decca Recordings - Brahms, Adam, Et Al
    Label: Decca   Catalog: 001078802 Release Date: 03/11/2008   Number of Discs: 9
    Composer:  Richard Strauss,  Johann Strauss Jr.,  Josef Strauss,  Gustav Holst  ... 
    Conductor:  Herbert von Karajan
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Vienna Philharmonic Orchestra
    On sale! $71.98
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  • 24.
    Label: Opus Kura   Catalog: 7032 Release Date: 09/18/2007   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Engelbert Humperdinck,  Pietro Mascagni,  Giuseppe Verdi,  Enrique Granados  ... 
    Conductor:  Herbert von Karajan
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Philharmonia Orchestra
    On sale! $18.98
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  • 25.
    Songs And Waltzes From Vienna - Lotte Lehman, Bruno Walter
    Label: Cbs Masterworks Portrait   Catalog: 47682 Release Date: 06/25/2007   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Johann Strauss Jr.,  Nico Dostal,  Hermann Leopoldi,  Ralph Benatzky  ... 
    Performer:  Paul Ulanowsky,  Lotte Lehmann
    Conductor:  Bruno Walter
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Columbia Symphony Orchestra
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