The fact that the present CD opens with the Marsch Wiener Künstler underlines the connection between the Schrammel Quartet and the Vienna Philharmonic. For the 100th Philharmonic Concert in 1886, the conductor Hans Richter invited the Schrammel brothers to perform in front of the orchestra, and Johann (Hanns) Schrammel thanked the composition of the March for Viennese artists. Johann Strauss was reportedly "not amused" about Lanner's preference. The present version was arranged by Otto Thirsfeld.
The Polka française Im Kahlenbergerdörfl comes from Philipp Fahrbach junior. The young Fahrbach took over his father's orchestra, which had begun with Johann Strauss' father, and also gave concerts at the World Exhibition in Vienna in 1873. In his day he was one of the most popular dance composers in Vienna. The arrangement for Schrammelquartett comes from the virtuoso harmonica player Josef Friedrich Mikulas, who this time preferred the "picksweet Hölzl". In his long musical life, which he lived until 1980, he not only worked but also wrote countless own works.
The D-dance was created by Johann Schrammel. In this original piece, the processing is not necessary. The fine composition technique speaks for itself. The Polka Schnell Wien on everything by Eduard Strauß was edited by Alfons Egger for Schrammelquartett. These loving arrangements allowed the Philharmonia Schrammeln to include a large part of the oeuvre of the Strauss brothers in their repertoire. In doing so, he opened the spectrum of the ensemble wide. The original waltz poet by Johann Schrammel can be heard again. It shows that the Schrammeln also play the specifically Viennese waltz beat, although they probably never played up to the dance themselves. For a Viennese who can dance the waltz, the question of the length of the individual quarters poses no problem. It takes more time to turn through 180 degrees than to pull the foot into the final part of the bar.
Carl Wilhelm Drescher (1850-1925) also played in the Schrammel Quartet. With his own orchestra, he gained great popularity as the “King of the Vienna Salon Chapels”. His Grinzinger march pays homage to the best-known wine tavern area in Vienna. Josef Mikulas arranged it for the clarinet.
Johann Schrammel’s Waltzidyll Morgengruß again arranged Josef Mikulas for the harmonica line-up. It couldn't be more Viennese. Like many waltzes, this one is not intended for dancing. It's about absolute music, about instrumental performance pieces.
Alexander Katzenberger (1831–1892) is particularly original. Together with his wife, who knew how to play the "picksweet Hölzl" excellently, and his children, he built up a small salon orchestra, which mainly played in the Vienna Prater. The dance Memories of the Red Stadel was arranged by the composer Walter Wasservogel (1912-1986), who played for decades in a pub in downtown Vienna.
Galloping At the barrel slide, Karl Mikulas addresses the custom of sliding over a bucket of thousands on the feast day of St. Leopold on November 15th in Klosterneuburg. Josef Mikulas' brother was also a brilliant broker of Viennese dance styles.
"A Schnoferl ziagn" is the Viennese expression for wrinkling your nose to indicate that you are upset or offended. "Schnoflert" means "spoken through the nose". The composer Johann Mayer, known as Zwickerl, has included precise instructions for playing the Schnofler dance: "sul ponticello", near the bridge, so that a nasal tone is created.
The Polka française Praterveigerln by Johann Schrammel indicates the search for the first violets in the Prater. Anyone who found these first signs of the approaching spring could be proud. Edited by Walter Wasservogel for clarinets. When an assassination attempt on Emperor Franz Josef I failed on February 18, 1853, Johann Strauß wrote a march with the complicated title: Emperor Franz Josef I. Rescue Jubilee March, which he ended by echoing the old Haydn anthem. Eberhard Götz, once a member of the ensemble, adapted the march for Schrammeln. Vienna owes the rescue to the construction of the votive church.
The old Viennese singing dances by Johann Schrammel were edited by Alfons Egger. Egger, member of the State Opera Orchestra since 1967, became the first violinist of the Philharmonia Schrammeln in 1972 and became a recognized expert in Viennese music. The Schrammel brothers were particularly close to his heart, which is why he also worked on the book Die Schrammeln and their time for his mother Margarethe Egger, which is the standard work on these Urwien musicians and the genre they created. In 1997 he crowned his commitment to the composer Josef Lanner, which had been underestimated until then, and founded the orchestra »Corso Vienna«. It continues to shape the Philharmonia Schrammeln today.
In May 1861 Richard Wagner heard his Lohengrin for the first time in Vienna and was thrilled by the performance. So it is only natural to show that the prelude to this opera does not lose any of its effect, even in the screeching arrangement with button harmonica, that you can even hear new facets.
Alfons Egger worked on the Chinese gallop of Johann Strauss' father for the clarinet. If you listen closely, you can notice that a quote from Puccini's Turandot was swindled into it. Egger not only has a sense of humor when arranging. He is still the heir of Josef Lanner, who developed and cultivated cheerfulness in Viennese music at an early age.
In the 20th century, Hans Zajicek (1899¬¬ – 1973) continued the Viennese tradition and wrote the suburban dance. The processing comes from Robert Peter. The last piece comes from Carl Wilhelm Drescher again: Scherz-Polka Kellner preis'n offers a study of the fine Viennese humor arranged by Josef Mikulas.
© Richard Schmitz