While the music of Johann Strauss I was largely eclipsed by the more popular works of his sons, particularly the waltzes and operettas of Johann Strauss II, the elder composer's work was enormously successful in its day and secured the family's reputation in nineteenth century Vienna. Unfamiliar though many of these pieces may be to the uninitiated, some are still programmed regularly as light concert fare, though they are seldom played in the authentic Biedermeier style that is captured on this disc. Strauss' orchestras tended to be small, often with as few as 12 musicians, so the size of the ensemble is an important consideration. The Camerata Cassovia, a chamber orchestra led by Christian Pollack, performs these waltzes and galops in the intimate style one would have heard in social gatherings of the period. Pollack, a professor at the Vienna Conservatory and researcher of Viennese dance music and the works of the Strauss family in particular, has not only re-created the music's sound in a historically faithful way, but he has actually revived some of the unpublished works from manuscripts. The recorded sound is of high quality, and the CD's informative liner notes offer thorough histories of each composition.
AllMusic Review by Blair Sanderson
Alte und neue Tempête: Altdeutscher Polstertanz, Altvater-Galoppade und Sauvage, dances for orchestra, Op. 10