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Act I of Strauss's Opera ' Arabella '


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Relayed from
The Royal Opera House, Covent Garden
THE SEASON of grand opera at Covent Garden sees the first performance in Britain of Strauss's very newest opera, Arabella, so new that it was produced for the first time on any stage only a year ago in Dresden. On that occasion no more than the first act was relayed from the Dresden State Opera House. Now,however,we are to hear all the three acts, but not all at once ; thus, tonight's relay of the first act will be followed by the second act on Mav 21. and the third act on May 29.
Arabella is the nearest in type to the well-beloved Der Rosenkavalier of all the operas written by Strauss in the period between the composition of these two, and consequently is the opera most likely to appeal to British audiences. The setting, atmosphere, period and story of Arabella offer the same attractions as they do in the. earlier opera.
The libretto of Arabella, by Hugo von
Hofmannsthal, author of most of Strauss's later opera texts, was taken from his own short shory .' Lucidor ', and relates a pleasant tale of comedy and intrigue. The period is 1860, and the setting Vienna amongst the ' best people '. All this provides splendid opportunities for gay music ; particularly music in waltz-time, for in 1860 Johann Strauss was at the height of his popularity, and, as the ' Waltz King ', wore with distinction the most firmly established and safest crown in Europe.
An article on Arabella by Edwin Evans with a detailed synopsis of the plot is on page 425 of this issue. Listeners will do well to get inside the story ; as with all modern operas, a knowledge of what is doing on the stage very greatly increases the interest of the broadcast.


Unknown: Johann Strauss
Unknown: Edwin Evans

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Act I of Strauss's Opera ' Arabella '

National Programme Daventry, 17 May 1934 20.00

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