Blue Danube Waltz

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On the Beautiful Blue Danube, Op. 314 is a waltz composed by Johann Strauss II in 1867 for the Vienna Men's Singing Society. It was written for four-part choir with orchestra or piano. The words were written by Josef Weyl. It was first performed on 15 February 1867 by the Vienna Men's Singing Society and the orchestra of the Forty-Second Infantry Regiment directed by Rudolph Weinwurm.[1] It was performed without voices on March 4 and again on March 10 in the same format at a benefit for Strauss's brothers. It was a sensation when performed at the Paris Exposition the same year. This performance marked the beginning of Strauss's international reputation.[1] The waltz was published in 1867 by Carl Anton Spina.

The piece begins with a slow introduction in the dominant key of A major. This introduction is followed by five small waltzes of two sections each. Melodies with large leaps are contrasted with linear melodies composed within a narrow range. The coda touches on the various melodies and concludes with a lively finish.[1] The waltz was first played in the United States in its instrumental version on 1 July 1867 in New York. It was first played in Great Britain on 21 September 1867 in London at the promenade concerts in Covent Garden. The instrumental version is usually performed today. On New Year's Eve in Vienna, the waltz is broadcast on television and radio stations at midnight. It is an encore piece at the Vienna New Year's Day Concert.

References[change | change source]

  1. 1.0 1.1 1.2 Palmer, John. All music guide to classical music: the definitive guide to classical music. Hal Leonard Corp. p. 1314.

Other websites[change | change source]

Media related to The Blue Danube at Wikimedia Commons