Saturday, June 17th 2017 - Grand Hôtel Intercontinental de Paris

150th anniversary of the Blue Danube


150th anniversary of the Beautiful Blue Danube

Johann Strauss II

Celebrating the Blue Danube in Paris for the Bal des Parisiennes is not only playing once more one of the most famous classical scores in the world : it is the occasion to recall the peculiar story of a music that could have ended forgotten once and for all...

In february, 1867, the waltz of the Blue Danube is for the first time freshly welcomed by the Viennese audience : they do not appreciate the parodic lyrics of the music composed by Johann Strauss II. It is played again only once, which is very little for the time and indicates the audience is not convinced...

Later on in the year, Johann Strauss tries to give the score another chance, by presenting again the Blue Danube, this time for the Parisian audience, at the occasion of the International Exhibition : rather dary ! At that time, Offenbach and Waldteufel reign over the brilliant feast of the Paris of Napoleon III, and challenge the Strauss family. Now it is deprived of its ridiculous lyrics, the Blue Danube meets with triumph : the French audience loves it and asks for it twenty times, making the concert lasting two more hours... Immediately, Vienna gets fond of the score and it is the beginning of the incredible notoriety of this unique waltz.

The Bal des Parisiennes, the Viennese Ball of Paris, celebrates this incredible common story between Paris and Vienna, and will this year pay great attention to celebrating the Blue Danube in a particular way, by having the music played in its original version, thanks to the expertise of the Orchestre Eugenie, whose researchs tend to recreate the original sound of the music, as it was heard in 1867 in Paris. That'll make the 2017 edition of the Ball utterly exceptional !