Richard Strauss

Biography

Born: Jun 11, 1864; Germany   Died: Sep 8, 1949; Germany   Period: 20th Century
Though the long career of Richard Strauss spanned one of the most chaotic periods in political, social, and cultural history of the world, the composer retained his essentially Romantic aesthetic even into the age of television, jet engines, and atom bombs. Born in Munich in 1864, Strauss was the son of Franz Joseph Strauss, the principal hornist in the Munich Court Orchestra. Strauss demonstrated musical aptitude at an early age, and extensive Read more training in piano, violin, theory, harmony, and orchestration equipped him to produce music of extraordinary polish and maturity by the time he reached adulthood. His primary teachers had been his father, who was a musical conservative, and Ludwig Thuille, a Munich School composer and family friend. Strauss' Serenade for 13 Winds, Op. 7 (1881), written when he was 17, led conductor Hans von Bülow to pronounce him "by far the most striking personality since Brahms." Bülow was able to give Strauss his first commission and an assistant conductor position. Through new friendships, Strauss learned to admire the writings of Schopenhauer and Nietzsche and the music of Wagner and Liszt. He embarked on a long career of conducting and composing, which take him all over Europe and the U.S.

From the beginning of Strauss' career as a composer, it was evident that the orchestra was his natural medium. With the composition of the "symphonic fantasy" Aus Italien in 1886, Strauss embarked on a series of works that represents both one of the pivotal phases of his career and a body of music of central importance in the late German Romantic repertoire. Though he did not invent the tone poem per se, he brought it to its pinnacle. In such works as Don Juan (1888-1889), Ein Heldenleben (1897-1898), and Also sprach Zarathustra (1895-1896) -- whose first minute or so, thanks to its use in the film 2001: A Space Odyssey, is the composer's most readily recognizable music -- Strauss displayed his abundant gift for exploiting the coloristic possibilities of the orchestra as a dramatic device like few composers ever had (or have since).

With the arrival of the twentieth century, after becoming conductor at Berlin's Hofoper, Strauss' interest turned more fully to opera, resulting in a body of unforgettable works that have long been fixtures of the repertoire: Salome (1903-1905), Elektra (1906-1908), and Der Rosenkavalier (1909-1910) are just a few of his best-known efforts for the stage. In 1919, Strauss became co-director of the Vienna Staatsoper, but was forced to resign five years later by his partner, Franz Schalk, who resented being left with many of the operational duties while Strauss was frequently away guest conducting or being feted as a great composer. When the political situation in Europe became malignant in the 1930s, profound political naïveté led to Strauss' confused involvement with the Nazi propaganda machine, and the composer eventually alienated both the Nazis and their opponents. With the end of World War II, however, he was permitted to resume his professional life, although it would be a mere echo of his previous fame. He began to have serious health problems, his financial situation had been compromised, and the monuments that embodied great German art for him -- Goethe's Weimar house; the Dresden, Munich, and Vienna opera houses -- had been destroyed. Throughout his last years, works such as the Oboe Concerto (1945) and the gorgeously expressive Four Last Songs (1948) attest to Strauss' unwavering confidence in his singular musical voice.
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Strauss: Also Sprach Zarathustra, Don Juan, Till Eulenspiegel / Mackerras, RPO
Release Date: 03/08/2011   Label: Royal Philharmonic Masterworks  
Catalog: 29260   Number of Discs: 1
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Strauss: Elektra / Herlitzius, Pape, Thielemann, Staatskapelle Dresden
Release Date: 08/05/2014   Label: Deutsche Grammophon  
Catalog: 002114902   Number of Discs: 2
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Strauss: Die Frau ohne Schatten / Nilsson, Bohm
Release Date: 09/20/1994   Label: Deutsche Grammophon  
Catalog: 445325   Number of Discs: 3
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Strauss: Elektra / Herlitzius, Meier, Salonen, Orchestre De Paris
Release Date: 08/26/2014   Label: Bel Air Classiques  
Catalog: 110   Number of Discs: 1
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Notturno - Strauss: Songs / Thomas Hampson, Wolfram Rieger
Release Date: 05/06/2014   Label: Deutsche Grammophon  
Catalog: 002037002   Number of Discs: 1
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Work: Also sprach Zarathustra, Op. 30

Browse 26-50 of 89 Available Recordings
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  • 26.
    Strauss: Burleske, Also sprach Zarathustra / Reiner
    Label: Rca   Catalog: 68638 Release Date: 08/03/2011   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Richard Strauss
    Performer:  Byron Janis
    Conductor:  Fritz Reiner
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Chicago Symphony Orchestra
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  • 27.
    Klaus Tennstedt - The Great EMI Recordings
    Label: Emi Classics   Catalog: 94433 Release Date: 06/07/2011   Number of Discs: 14
    Composer:  Ludwig van Beethoven,  Johannes Brahms,  Anton Bruckner,  Richard Strauss  ... 
    Performer:  Jessye Norman,  Jorma Hynninen
    Conductor:  Klaus Tennstedt
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  London Philharmonic Orchestra,  BBC Symphony Chorus,  London Philharmonic Choir  ... 
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  • 28.
    Strauss: Also Sprach Zarathustra, Don Juan, Till Eulenspiegel / Mackerras, RPO
    Label: Royal Philharmonic Masterworks   Catalog: 29260 Release Date: 03/08/2011   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Richard Strauss
    Conductor:  Sir Charles Mackerras
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Royal Philharmonic Orchestra
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  • 29.
    Strauss: Tone Poems / Rudolf Kempe, Staatskapelle Dresden
    Label: Emi Classics   Catalog: 18745 Release Date: 03/08/2011   Number of Discs: 2
    Composer:  Richard Strauss
    Conductor:  Rudolf Kempe
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Dresden Staatskapelle
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  • 30.
    Dvorak: Symphony No.9; Strauss / Mehta, Israel Philharmonic
    Label: Helicon   Catalog: 9632 Release Date: 02/08/2011   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Antonín Dvorák,  Richard Strauss
    Conductor:  Zubin Mehta
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Israel Philharmonic Orchestra
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  • 31.
    Richard Strauss: Tone Poems
    Label: Emi Classics   Catalog: 56334 Release Date: 04/06/2010   Number of Discs: 2
    Composer:  Richard Strauss
    Conductor:  Wolfgang Sawallisch,  Klaus Tennstedt
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  • 32.
    Strauss - Fritz Reiner
    Label: Rca Victor Gold Seal   Catalog: 60930 Release Date: 01/28/2010   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Richard Strauss
    Conductor:  Fritz Reiner
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Chicago Symphony Orchestra
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  • 33.
    Strauss: Also Sprach Zarathrustra / Reiner, Chicago
    Label: Rca Victor Red Seal   Catalog: 5721 Release Date: 12/29/2009   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Richard Strauss
    Conductor:  Fritz Reiner
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Chicago Symphony Orchestra
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  • 34.
    The Royal Edition - R. Strauss: Zarathustra, Etc / Bernstein
    Label: Sony   Catalog: 47626 Release Date: 12/16/2009   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Richard Strauss
    Conductor:  Leonard Bernstein
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  New York Philharmonic
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  • 35.
    Strauss: Don Quixote, Also Sprach Zarathustra / Dimitri Mitropoulos, Et Al
    Label: Medici Masters   Catalog: 35-2 Release Date: 09/29/2009   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Richard Strauss
    Performer:  Paul Schroer,  Alwin Bauer
    Conductor:  Dimitri Mitropoulos
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Cologne Radio Symphony Orchestra
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  • 36.
    Label: Dal Segno   Catalog: DSPRCD050 Release Date: 08/01/2009   Number of Discs: 2
    Composer:  Richard Strauss
    Conductor:  Herbert Blomstedt
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  • 37.
    Strauss: Also Sprach Zarathustra, Don Quixote / Ormandy
    Label: Rca   Catalog: 38287 Release Date: 05/08/2009   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Richard Strauss
    Conductor:  Eugene Ormandy
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Philadelphia Orchestra
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  • 38.
    Strauss: Also sprach Zarathustra / Mehta, Los Angeles PO
    Label: Lim   Catalog: 35 Release Date: 01/20/2009   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Richard Strauss
    Conductor:  Zubin Mehta
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Los Angeles Philharmonic Orchestra
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  • 39.
    Strauss: Ein Heldenleben, Don Juan, Zarathustra / Sinopoli
    Label: Eloquence   Catalog: 4800411 Release Date: 10/13/2008   Number of Discs: 2
    Composer:  Richard Strauss
    Conductor:  Giuseppe Sinopoli
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Dresden Staatskapelle,  New York Philharmonic
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  • 40.
    Strauss: Also Sprach Zarathustra, Tod Und Verklärung
    Label: Decca   Catalog: 425942 Release Date: 09/16/2008   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Richard Strauss
    Conductor:  Vladimir Ashkenazy
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Cleveland Orchestra
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  • 41.
    R Strauss: Also Sprach Zarathustra, Don Juan / Bychkov
    Label: Philips   Catalog: 422357 Release Date: 09/02/2008   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Richard Strauss
    Conductor:  Semyon Bychkov
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Philharmonia Orchestra,  Royal Concertgebouw Orchestra
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  • 42.
    Strauss: Also Sprach Zarathustra / Karajan, Vienna Phil
    Label: London/Decca Jubilee   Catalog: 417720 Release Date: 09/02/2008   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Richard Strauss
    Conductor:  Herbert von Karajan
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Vienna Philharmonic Orchestra
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  • 43.
    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
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  • 44.
    Strauss: Also Sprach Zarathustra, Don Juan, Macbeth / Doráti
    Label: London/Decca Jubilee   Catalog: 2LM430-708 Release Date: 09/11/2007   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Richard Strauss
    Conductor:  Antal Doráti
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Detroit Symphony Orchestra
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  • 45.
    Legendary Strauss Recordings
    Label: Rca Victor Gold Seal   Catalog: 60929 Release Date: 08/06/2007   Number of Discs: 2
    Composer:  Richard Strauss
    Performer:  Bruno Jaenicke,  Scipione Guidi,  Alfred Wallenstein
    Conductor:  Willem Mengelberg,  Serge Koussevitzky,  Sir Thomas Beecham,  Leopold Stokowski  ... 
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  New York Philharmonic,  Boston Symphony Orchestra,  Philadelphia Orchestra  ... 
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  • 46.
    Strauss: Also Sprach Zarathustra, Burleske / Leonskaja, Bertini
    Label: Capriccio Records   Catalog: 71125 Release Date: 01/01/2007   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Richard Strauss
    Performer:  Elisabeth Leonskaja
    Conductor:  Gary Bertini
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Cologne Radio Symphony Orchestra
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  • 47.
    A Tribute To Zubin Mehta
    Label: Decca   Catalog: 000623402 Release Date: 04/11/2006   Number of Discs: 6
    Composer:  Carl Maria von Weber,  Gioachino Rossini,  Gottfried von Einem,  Richard Wagner  ... 
    Performer:  Walter Goodwin,  Forrest Clark,  William Kraft,  Charles DeLancey
    Conductor:  Zubin Mehta
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Los Angeles Philharmonic Orchestra,  Israel Philharmonic Orchestra,  Vienna Philharmonic Orchestra
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  • 48.
    R. Strauss: Orchestral Works / Zinman, Et Al
    Label: Arte Nova   Catalog: 984950 Release Date: 02/14/2006   Number of Discs: 7
    Composer:  Richard Strauss
    Performer:  Thomas Grossenbacher,  Michel Rouilly,  Roland Pöntinen,  Simon Fuchs  ... 
    Conductor:  David Zinman
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Zurich Tonhalle Orchestra,  Zurich Tonhalle Orchestra Winds
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  • 49.
    Strauss: Orchestral Works / Kempe, Frager, Hoelscher, Staatskapelle Dresden
    Label: Brilliant Classics   Catalog: 7591 Release Date: 12/20/2005   Number of Discs: 9
    Composer:  Richard Strauss
    Performer:  Peter Damm,  Manfred Weise,  Wolfgang Liebscher,  Malcolm Frager  ... 
    Conductor:  Rudolf Kempe
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Dresden Staatskapelle
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  • 50.
    Original Masters - Karl Böhm - Mozart And Strauss
    Label: Deutsche Grammophon   Catalog: 000480402 Release Date: 09/13/2005   Number of Discs: 8
    Composer:  Carl Maria von Weber,  Richard Strauss,  Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart
    Performer:  Lisa Della Casa,  Michel Schwalbé,  Kurt Böhme,  Waldemar Kmentt  ... 
    Conductor:  Karl Böhm
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Vienna Philharmonic Orchestra,  Berlin Philharmonic Orchestra,  Royal Concertgebouw Orchestra  ... 
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