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- (Disc 1)

Schubert, Franz - Composer
Strauss, Josef - Composer

Venue: Grosses Festspielhaus Salzburg
Date of Concert: 2009
Festival: Salzburg Festival
Playing Time: 01:35:18
Television Director: Beyer, Michael
Catalogue Number: A045005540000

The opening of the Salzburg Festival, for many regarded as the world's most renowned music festival, is by tradition a high-profile event. In 2009, this first concert given by the Wiener Philharmoniker was conducted by Nikolaus Harnoncourt. The program is, in honor of the 80th birthday of the great Austrian conductor (6 Dec. 2009), purely Austrian.

Though it may seem unusual at first glance, under Harnoncourt's direction the disparate works fuse into a moving, slightly melancholy portrait of the Viennese dance in the early 19th century. The concert opens with Anton Webern's delicate orchestration of Schubert's Six German Dances, which segues into two polkas and a waltz by Josef Strauss, the younger – and bolder – composer brother of "Walzerkönig" Johann Strauss, Jr. With this alternation of bittersweet and brassy dances, the stage is set for Harnoncourt's staggering reading of Schubert's "Great" C major Symphony, in which the dance of death – so Viennese yet so universal – seems to have served as the composer's model.

Part 1

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