Czibulka, Fahrbach Jr., Fetrás, Gung’l, Hellmesberger Jr., Ivanovici, Lanner, Lincke, Millöcker, Schmid, Schrammel, Ziehrer
Czech Chamber Philharmonic Orchestra Pardubice / John Georgiadis
       MARCO POLO 8.225365 75’ 01”

Having extensively covered the dance music of Johann Strauss Jnr. extending to over 50 volumes, and with several additional discs devoted to the likes of Karel Komzak and Carl Ziehrer, Marco Polo have come up with the engaging idea of exploring some of the contemporaries of the illustrious Strauss Family and this generously filled volume - there is to be a second - consists entirely of world premiere recordings.

The excellent Czech ensemble employed are under the expert guidance of John Georgiadis who has had a long association with music of this type. Some of the composers included here are, of course, familiar because they penned much better known compositions. Examples are Iosef Ivanovici (Waves of the Danube) and Ocsar Fetrás (Moonlight on the Alster).

One distinct oddity here, despite the title this CD bears, is a certain Kurt Schmid who didn't arrive in the world until 1942 and is still active but who writes copiously in the style of traditional Viennese dance music and whose 'Anniversary March' bears the staggering opus number of 527!!

All the music here is attractively tuneful and a pleasure to listen to. Sound quality is full and ample with plenty of tangible presence.

Well worth investigating and one hopes that Volujme 2 will not be too long delayed.

Roger Hyslop

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