The Waltz King Johann Strauss II 1825-1899Shad Sparks
Early Life • Strauss was born in St. Ulrich near Vienna Austria, on October 25, 1825. • His father’s name was Johann Strauss I • He had two younger brothers Edward and Josef.
Early Life (cont.) • While he was younger his father wanted him to be a banker rather than a violinist • Knowing this, he secretly studied with the first violinist in his father’s orchestra, Franz Amon • When his father found out, he whipped Johann. He said he would beat the music out of him • Later on his father ended up abandoning the family for a mistress, Emile Trampusch
Debut as a Composer • Strauss made his debut at Dommayer's in October 1844, where he performed some of his first works • The waltzes Sinngedichte, Op. 1 and Gunstwerber, Op. 4 and the polka Herzenslust, Op. 3 were just some that he performed
Career Advances • Strauss eventually surpassed his father's fame and became one of the most popular waltz composers of the era • In 1853 Strauss was driven by constant demands and stress to take a 7 week vacation to the countryside. • In his absence, his brother Josef had to quit his job as an engineer to command Johann’s orchestra.
Music • http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_CTYymbbEL4&feature=player_detailpage#t=90
Marriage • Strauss married the singer Henrietta Treffz in 1862, and remained together until her death in 1878. • Six weeks after her death he married actress Angelika Dittrich. • Dittrich was not a supporter of Strauss’s music and with many disagreements, they eventually got a divorce.
Marriage (cont) • After the divorce Strauss sought after his third wife Adele Deutsch whom he married in August 1882. • Unlike Dittrich, Deutsch encouraged Strauss’s musical talent to flow resulting in many great compositions
Death • Johann was diagnosed with pleural pneumonia in 1889 and died in Vienna at the age of 73. • He was buried in Zentralfreidhof and at the time of his death, he was still composing his ballet Aschenbrödel.
Legacy • Much of his music has been played on tv and in movies through the years • Strauss is remembered with performances by the Vienna Philharmonic Orchestra playing many of his compositions • Johann Strauss II will be remembered forever
References • Gänzl, Kurt. The Encyclopedia of Musical Theatre (3 Volumes). New York: Schirmer Books, 2001. • Traubner, Richard. Operetta: A Theatrical History. Garden City, NY: Doubleday & Company, 1983. • Jacob, H. E. Johann Strauss, Father and Son: A Century of Light Music. The Greystone Press, 1940.