New Year's Eve Concert - 'A WALZER MUST BE'.
Only two years after Franz Lehár had catapulted himself to the top of the operetta composers with his "Merry Widow", Leo Fall, born in Olomouc, Moravia, and only three years younger, started a career in 1907 with no less than two celebrated operettas, which at its peak was in no way inferior to that of his competitor. His first two successful plays - "Der fidele Bauer" and "Die Dollarprinzessin" - set the tone for the range between maudlin folk play and satirical salon comedy that was to remain characteristic of Fall's further work. Especially with the former direction, he countered the cosmopolitan, metropolitan operettas of Franz Lehár, Emmerich Kálmán or Paul Abraham with his own, unmistakable alternative. And instead of reveling in the broad orchestral sound or swinging in snappy rhythms from the New World like his colleagues, Fall relied entirely on a chiseled, transparent orchestral sound, with the help of which the subtle ironic wit - entirely in the sense of the inventor of the operetta, Jacques Offenbach - seeps from the text into the music: there the clarinet laughs, the violins click, the piccolo giggles. And although Falls operettas take us to very different locations - from Thessaly ("Der liebe Augustin") to Paris ("Madame Pompadour") to Istanbul ("Die Rose von Stambul") - the composer remains musically closely connected to his adopted home of Vienna. Thanks to his ingenuity and compositional mastery, he gave the Viennese waltz its last great flowering. That is why the motto on the Bosporus is: "It must be a waltz"!