The Last Waltz
Author: John Suchet
Captured in a beautiful package, including more than fifty color photographs, The Last Waltz tells the intriguing story of of the Viennese Strauss family known for producing some of the best known, best loved music of the nineteenth century. Johann and Josef Strauss, the Waltz Kings, composed hundreds of instantly recognizable and enduring melodies, including The Blue Danube Waltz, Tales from the Vienna Woods, Voices of Spring and The Radetzky March. Their iconic music has been featured on the scores of nearly a thousand films. Yet despite their success, this was a family riven with tension, feuds and jealousy, living in a country that was undergoing seismic upheaval. Through the personal and political chaos, the Strauss family continued to compose music to which the Viennese – anxious to forget their troubles – could dance and drank champagne, even as their country hurtled towards oblivion at the hands of the First World War. Classical music expert and radio host John Suchet skillfully portrays this gripping story, capturing the family dramas, the tensions, triumphs and disasters against the turbulent backdrop of Austria in the nineteenth century, from revolution to regicide.
Did They Rest in Peace?
Author: Joseph William Lewis Jr. M.D.
Ashes to ashes, dust to dust. By what miracle can an assortment of seemingly unrelated particles come together and correctly assemble to form a human being? Amazingly, once aggregated, these atoms, molecules, and compounds manage to interact reasonably coherently during our lives but seek to return to their dusty state when death occurs. Of the billions of our species who have existed on earth over the millennia, most have quietly and inexorably returned to ashes and dust when their term of life expired. This book tracks some of the misadventures of selected corpses, including burials that went awry to body snatching, exhumations, human-relic collection, and assorted desecrations. Over the years, it seems that a remarkable number of bodies have failed to enjoy the admonition to “Rest in Peace.” Whether these aberrations in the burial process have disturbed the afterlife of the departed, everyone is dying to discover the answer.
The illustrated life-story of the world’s most beloved composer, bringing vividly to life the man himself, his influences, achievements, and the glittering milieu of the Habsburg empire in eighteenth-century Europe. We think we know the story of Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart's life. Austrian-born to a tyrannical father who worked him fiercely; unhappily married to a spendthrift woman; a child-like character ill at ease amid the aristocratic splendor of the Viennese court; a musical genius who died young thus depriving the world of future glories. Yet only that last point is actually true. In this comprehensive biography, John Suchet examines the many myths and misunderstandings surrounding the world's best-loved composer. From his early days as a child prodigy performing for the imperial royal family in Vienna to the last months of his short life, driven to exhaustion by a punitive workload, one thing remained constant: his happy disposition. Through trials and tribulations, grand successes and disheartening setbacks, Suchet shows us the real Mozart—blessed with an abundance of talent yet sometimes struggling to earn a living. His mischievous nature and earthy sense of humor, his ease and confidence in his own incredible abilities; these were traits that never left him. His music has brought comfort to countless generations; his life, though brief, is no less fascinating.
Author: John Suchet
Genius, patriot, pessimist, atheist: an exploration of Italy's best-loved composer, Giuseppe Verdi
The image of Vienna as a musical city is a familiar one. This book explores the history of music in Vienna, focussing on three different epochs, 1700, 1800 and 1900
A fascinating and insightful biography of one of the greatest composers of all time, Johann Strauss. Many of the earliest books, particularly those dating back to the 1900s and before, are now extremely scarce and increasingly expensive. We are republishing these classic works in affordable, high quality, modern editions, using the original text and artwork.
Offering comprehensive coverage of classical music, this guide surveys more than eleven thousand albums and presents biographies of five hundred composers and eight hundred performers, as well as twenty-three essays on forms, eras, and genres of classical music. Original.
The Radetzky March
Author: Joseph Roth
Publisher: The Overlook Press
"Incomparably Roth's greatest novel . . . the great poem of elegy to Habsburg Austria." —J. M. Coetzee, The New York Review of Books The Radetzky March, Joseph Roth's classic saga of the privileged von Trotta family, encompasses the entire social fabric of the Austro-Hungarian Empire just before World War I. The author's greatest achievement, The Radetzky March is an unparalleled portrait of a civilization in decline, and as such a universal story for our times.
Author: John Suchet
Publisher: Open Road + Grove/Atlantic
Beethoven scholar and classical radio host John Suchet has had a lifelong, ardent interest in the man and his music. Here, in his first full-length biography, Suchet illuminates the composer’s difficult childhood, his struggle to maintain friendships and romances, his ungovernable temper, his obsessive efforts to control his nephew’s life, and the excruciating decline of his hearing. This absorbing narrative provides a comprehensive account of a momentous life, as it takes the reader on a journey from the composer’s birth in Bonn to his death in Vienna. Chronicling the landmark events in Beethoven's career—from his competitive encounters with Mozart to the circumstances surrounding the creation of the well-known Für Elise and Moonlight Sonata—this book enhances understanding of the composer's character, inspiring a deeper appreciation for his work. Beethoven scholarship is constantly evolving, and Suchet draws on the latest research, using rare source material (some of which has never before been published in English) to paint a complete and vivid portrait of the legendary prodigy.
A Nervous Splendor
Author: Frederic Morton
Publisher: Diversion Publishing Corp.
National Book Award finalist: This journey through fin-de-siècle Vienna is “a remarkable and unusual slice of history” (Los Angeles Times). On January 30, 1889, at the champagne-splashed height of the Viennese Carnival, the handsome and charming Crown Prince Rudolf shot and killed his teenage mistress and then himself in a suicide pact. The two shots that rang out at Mayerling in the Vienna Woods echo still. A Nervous Splendor deftly tells the haunting story of the prince and his city, where, in the span of only ten months, “the Western dream started to go wrong.” Other young men with striking intellectual and artistic talents, all as frustrated as the prince, moved through Vienna during this period—among them a young Sigmund Freud, Gustav Mahler, Theodor Herzl, Gustav Klimt, and the playwright Arthur Schnitzler, whose La Ronde was the great erotic drama of the fin de siècle. In this book, the bestselling author of The Rothschilds and Thunder at Twilight creates a portrait of a time and place that is “as lush, beguiling, and charming as an emperor’s waltz” (Publishers Weekly). “A Nervous Splendor is my favorite book about Vienna.” —John Irving, New York Times–bestselling author of House Cider Rules
The Strauss Family
Author: Peter Kemp
Publisher: Seven Hills Books
Author: John Suchet
Pyotr Ilyich Tchaikovsky is one of the most successful composers that Russia has ever produced, but his path to success was not an easy one.A shy, emotional child, intended for the civil service by his father, Tchaikovsky came late to composing as a career, and despite his success he was a troubled character. Doubting himself at every turn, he was keenly wounded by criticism. The death of his mother haunted him all his life and his incessant attempts to suppress his homosexuality took a huge toll.From Tchaikovsky's disastrous marriage to his extraordinary relationship with his female patron, his many amorous liaisons, and his devotion to friends and family, Suchet shows us how the complexity of Tchaikovsky's emotional life plays out in his music. A man who was by turns quick to laugh and to despair, his mercurial temperament found its outlet in some of the most emotionally intense music ever written.
A respected music critic offers a comprehensive overview of the world of classical music in an A-to-Z reference that encompasses more than a millennium of Western music and includes biographies of thousands of composers, as well as coverage of individual works, musical history and instruments, musical forms, technical terms and jargon, operatic plots, and other key areas. Original.
Only in Vienna
Author: Duncan J. D. Smith