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In Jaromír Weinberger’s music, melodies and rhythms from Bohemia combine with ingeniously constructed orchestral textures – and all this in the instrumental guise of the Roaring Twenties * In 1930 Weinberger’s Švanda dudák was the most widely performed opera in German-language opera houses * Under the German title Schwanda, der Dudelsackpfeifer, the work became more popular than in its Czech original version, which hardly attracted attention in Prague in 1927 * The success was also thanks to the German text by Max Brod, Franz Kafka’s friend and Leoš Janácek’s collaborator * Back then, and for many years afterward, Švanda was performed in German even at the Met and in Covent Garden * In Germany, Austria, and Czechoslovakia, however, the opera disappeared from the repertoire, for Weinberger was Jewish * In 1937 he was still able to produce his Wallenstein at the Vienna Opera, but in his subsequent American exile major successes eluded him * Only the orchestral variations on Under the Spreading Chestnut Tree, conducted by John Barbirolli, were received with warm applause in New York’s Carnegie Hall

Selected Works by Jaromír Weinberger:
Schwanda the Bagpiper (1927) opera
The Beloved Voice (1930) opera
Wallenstein (1937) opera
Under the Spreading Chestnut Tree (1939/41) Variations and Fugue on an Old English Tune

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