Viennese Dances

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JOSEPH LANNER Viennese Dances
Orchestre de Cannes cond. Wolfgang Dörner
Naxos 8.573552

Devotees of the New Year’s Day Concert from Vienna will know the name of Joseph Lanner (1801-1843). He has been claimed as ‘father of the Viennese waltz’ and was a contemporary of Johann Strauss I (1804-49), the viola player in his first quartet until they quarrelled and the latter left to form his own group. Lanner’s music was clearly an inspiration to the Strauss family, but Strauss Snr. became better known outside Vienna, probably due to his willingness to travel more widely. There are ten works on this 68½ minute disc – Lanner wrote 209 with opus numbers and many without – finishing with his best-known work, the delightful Die Schönbrunner-Walze, given 21 encores at his farewell concert. Other titles include Tarantula Galop, Witches’ Dance Waltz, Homage March and Hans Jörgel’s Polka, alluding to the character in a serial much read in Vienna at the time. Both the orchestra (Orchestre Régional de Cannes Provence Alpes Côte d’Azur) and their musical director since 2013 are unknown to me. However Dr Dörner was born in Vienna and the players sound as if born to this music. A wonderfully tuneful album at a low price.

Peter Burt

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