Viennese blood

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Work data
Title: Viennese blood
Shape: operetta
Original language: German
Music: Johann Strauss (son)
Libretto : Victor Léon and Leo Stein
Premiere: October 26, 1899
Place of premiere: Vienna
Place and time of the action: Vienna at the time of the Vienna Congress
  • Prince of Ypsheim-Gindelbach, Prime Minister of Reuss-Schleiz-Greiz ( bass buffo / baritone )
  • Balduin Graf Zedlau, envoy from Reuss-Schleiz-Greiz to Vienna ( tenor )
  • Gabriele, his wife ( soprano )
  • Josef, valet of Count Zedlau ( baritone )
  • Count Bitowski ( speaking role )
  • Demoiselle Franziska Cagliari, dancer at the Kärntnertor Theater in Vienna ( Soubrette )
  • Kagler, carousel owner, her father (bass buffo / baritone)
  • Pepi Pleininger, tasting mummy (soubrette)

Wiener Blut is a “comic operetta ” in three acts by Johann Strauss (son) , compiled and edited by Adolf Müller junior . The title came from the concert waltz Wiener Blut op. 354 (1873). The first performance of the operetta took place on October 26, 1899 in the Carltheater Vienna. The libretto was written by Victor Léon and Leo Stein , who later also wrote the libretto for the operetta The Merry Widow by Franz Lehár .


After an impressive life's work and in the middle of his work on the ballet Aschenbrödel , the 74-year-old Johann Strauss was not (anymore) in a position to tackle a new operetta. Nonetheless, he gave in to the urging of theater director Franz Jauner , his enterprising wife Adele and of course the librettist to authorize an operetta with his name after the conductor of the Theater an der Wien, Adolf Müller jun. , a compilation of dance melodies that were already available.

This compilation finally took over Müller jun. himself, who once again proved himself to be an experienced and highly talented theater practitioner: He put together the music effectively from various works by Strauss, whereby Strauss himself only acted in an advisory capacity (see section "Compilation" ). Müller referred to (at least) 31 works, the most famous of which were revealed very quickly (such as the waltz Wiener Blut or Morgenblätter or the Polka Schnell Leichtes Blut ), but he also resorted to very early, Biedermeier -like dances by Strauss back to the 1840s, which he skilfully combined with the nostalgic moments of the operetta: “In fairness it should therefore read: 'Wiener Blut', an operetta by Adolf Müller based on the motifs of Strauss's works.” This kind of secondary use of dance compositions as pasticcio at the The stage was new in 1899 and only became popular in Viennese operetta after the First World War .

Victor Léon and Leo Stein, on the other hand, wrote the storyline and faced the not easy task of adding singable texts to finished pieces of music, some of which were well known, which together should also result in a useful storyline. Her libretto about the amorous escapades of Count Zedlau at the time of the Congress of Vienna emerged from both .

With a new work from the pen of the Waltz King, Franz Jauner , the director of the Carltheater, believed he could save himself from the impending bankruptcy . Initially, Strauss had intended the work for the Theater an der Wien , however, there were disputes over fee claims. Johann Strauss finally no longer resisted Jauner's insistence that it was then offered to the Carltheater, and four months after Strauss' death the comedy of mistake was launched there.

Newspapers ironically commented on the premiere as “a vacation that Master Strauss took from heaven” and compared it to Titurel , who sings in Richard Wagner's Parsifal from the grave. The fiasco of the premiere led, among other things, to Jauner's suicide . However, this was probably also due to the zeitgeist that dominated the year 1899 and which looked spellbound to the 20th century and hoped to see better times. In such a situation, it was not necessary to look back at the Congress of Vienna.

The hoped-for box-office success was only achieved with the new production of the operetta in 1905 in the Theater an der Wien, which became a triumphal march around the world that continues to this day.


The fun-loving Viennese Gabriele was married to Count Baldwin Zedlau, an envoy from Reuss-Schleiz-Greiz . After a short time, Zedlau turns out to be very narrow-minded and since he lacks Viennese blood , Gabriele moves back to her parents' castle. The lonely Zedlau then begins an affair with the beautiful Franziska Cagliari. Balduin also keeps an eye on his servant Josef's friend Pepi Pleiniger, who works as a tasting mummy.

Gabriele finds out about her husband's activities and returns to his villa. After a turbulent mix-up, everyone meets in Hietzing at the Heuriger . Gabriele is accompanied by Prince Ypsheim-Gindelbach, the Prime Minister of Reuss-Schleiz-Greiz and head of Count Balduin. Balduin has fun with the tasting lady Pepi Pleiniger and Joseph comes with the beautiful Franziska Cagliari. Nevertheless, it comes to a happy ending, the respective couples (Gabriele and Balduin, Pepi and Joseph, Cagliari and Ypsheim-Gindelbach) find each other again and everyone recognizes that this can only be due to the Viennese blood, and sing a big final chorus.

The short lines of text show that the waltz was not originally intended for singing voices, but rather as an instrument. So one was forced to find something short but understandable and rhyming as the lyrics:

Viennese blood / Viennese blood! / Own juice, / Full of strength, / Full of embers. / Viennese blood, / rare good, / you exalt, / you revive / our courage!
Viennese blood / Viennese blood! / What the city / beautiful has / rests in you! / Viennese blood / Hot flood! / Everywhere / Is the word: / Viennese blood!

The title “Viennese Blood” and these lines of verse about it became a catchphrase: In this way, the exclusivity of the “ blue blood ” is skillfully transmitted to the entire population of the multicultural city of Vienna.


For the compilation Adolf Müller jun. proven 31 works in different situations, whereby the sound carrier example refers to the only existing Johann Strauss Complete Edition of the Marco Polo Edition ( Naxos ) and was only recorded for listening. The information follows Helmut Reichenauer: Thoughts on Viennese blood in the almanac of the “Wiener Blut” cultural association (No. 1, October 2011).

Work title, opus number premiere Sound carrier example
(Strauss edition)
Operetta "Wiener Blut" (1899):
act, scene, text passage
Piano reduction
( Cranz ): page
On the beautiful blue Danube (W), op.314 Dianabad Hall
Feb 15, 1867
Vol. 33 III. Act No. 11: “Let's dance! Waltz singing, oh your sound ... "(Ensemble) 143-146
On to the dance (Ps), op.436 Strauss-Palais
March 3, 1888
Vol. 20 III. Act No. 13: "Isn't the arbor luring you?" (Countess Minister) 153
Ballsträusschen (Ps), op.380 (Trio) Sophienbadsaal
February 19, 1878
Vol. 6 Act II, No. 9: “The Count - did you see him? - me? No, no! "(Pepi-Josef) 96
With us z'Haus (W), op.361 (Waltz 1) New World (Hietzing)
August 6, 1873
Vol. 1 III. Act No. 12, instrumental 149-150
With us z'Haus (W), op.361 (Introduction) New World (Hietzing)
August 6, 1873
Vol. 1 III. Act No. 12, instrumental 147
With us z'Haus (W), op.361 (Waltz 4) New World (Hietzing)
August 6, 1873
Vol. 1 III. Act, No. 12: "Go and sell it mei G'wand" (folk singer) 148, 149, 151
German Warrior March , op.284 Volksgarten
February 28, 1864
Vol. 7 Act II, No. 10 (appearance of the Comtesse): "The Viennese Comtesse gives at the Vienna Congress" (ladies' choir) 103-108
One heart, one sense (PM), op.323 Redoutensaal of the Hofburg
February 11, 1868
Vol. 20 Act II, No. 9: "Go look, my dear darling" (Josef-Pepi) 98-100
Fata morgana (PM), op.330 Flower halls of the Gartenbau-Ges.
February 1, 1869
Vol. 20 III. Act, No. 13: "Here are the arbors, here they should wait" (Graf) 155
Festive Polonaise , op.352 Volksgarten
September 15, 1871
Vol. 17 Act II, No. 6, instrumental and: "Oh, who counts the many names" (choir) 76-77
Features Waltz , op.293 Sophienbad-Saal
January 24, 1865
Vol. 10 Act I, No. 1b: "Five full days, I say five days, I have not seen his master" (Franziska) 15-16
Free balls (Ps), op.326 Prater , Schützen-Halle
July 27, 1868
Vol. 33 Act I, Finale: (p. 68) "No, no, I won't get smart out of it" and (p. 72) "There is probably a deception behind it" (ensemble) 68-75
Rejoice in life (W), op.340 Musikverein
January 15, 1870
Vol. 1 II. Act, final: "I won, I won" (Minister) 117-118
Stories from the Vienna Woods (W), op.325 (Waltz 1) Volksgarten
June 19, 1868
Vol. 21 I. act, introduction, instrumental 6th
Gut bourgeoisie (Pf), op. 282 Redoutensaal of the Hofburg
January 26, 1864
Vol. 26 Act II, No. 7: (p. 83) "I am a real Viennese blood ..." (Countess) and (p. 88) "I became a man of the world" (Count) 83, 84, 88
Jubilee March , op.396 Theater an der Wien
May 10, 1881
Vol. 15 III. Act No. 11, instrumental 136-138
Light Blood (Ps), op. 319 Volksgarten
March 10, 1867
Vol. 8 Act I, No. 4: (p. 34) "It seems to me you want to have fun ..." (Pepi) and (p. 35) "Draußt in Hietzing" (Josef-Pepi) 34-38
Light Blood (Ps), op. 319 Volksgarten
March 10, 1867
Vol. 8 Act II, No. 9: (p. 97) “Draußt in Hietzing” (Josef-Pepi) and (p. 101) “Ah, that might suit me, ah to let me stand” (Pepi) 97, 101
Praise of Women (PM), op.315 Volksgarten
February 17, 1867
Vol. 15 Act II, No. 11: "There are often moments in life" (Countess Minister) 113-115
Louischen-Polka (, op.339 Pavlovsk
September 22, 1869
Vol. 26 Act II, No. 11: "There are often moments in life" (Pepi) and (p. 35) "Draußt in Hietzing" (Josef-Pepi) 34-38
Morning sheets (W), op.279 (Waltz 1) Sophienbad-Saal
January 12, 1864
Vol. 10 Act I, No. 5: "Howdy God, you dear Nesterl" (Countess) 56, 57, 60
Morning Leaves (W), op.279 (Introduction) Sophienbad-Saal
January 12, 1864
Vol. 10 III. Act No. 13: “Quickly an arbor! Is that free? "(Franziska-Josef) 156
Myrtle Blossoms (W), op.395 (Waltz 1 + 2) Redouten halls of the Hofburg
7 May 1881
Vol. 10 Act I, No. 5: (p. 58) “How did I play music on you, poor spinet” and (p. 59) “My bedroom, it seems to be deserted” (Countess) 58, 59
New Vienna (W), op.342 (Introduction) Dianabad Hall
February 13, 1870
Vol. 36 Act I, No. 3 (letter scene): "Dear darling, I have to confess to you" (Graf-Josef) 27, 28
New Vienna (W), op.342 (Waltz 1a) Dianabad Hall
February 13, 1870
Vol. 36 Act I, No. 3: "You sweet sugar puff my, o come, o come to the tryst" (Count) 28, 29
New Vienna (W), op.342 (Waltz 1b) Dianabad Hall
February 13, 1870
Vol. 36 Act I, No. 3: "Do you think she'll come out?" (Count) 30th
New Vienna (W), op.342 (waltz 1a and introduction) Dianabad Hall
February 13, 1870
Vol. 36 Act II, No. 9: "Will then ask you later" (Graf) 92, 93
Neva Polka (Pf), op. 288 Pavlovsk
September 27, 1864
Vol. 41 Act II, No. 8: "When I became her husband" (Count) 90
Patroness polka (Pf), op.286 Sophienbad-Saal
February 2, 1864
Vol. 21 Act I, No. 5: "I can't complain ..." (Franziska) 46
Postillon d'amour (Pf), op.317 Volksgarten
March 10, 1867
Vol. 43 Act I, No. 1 (Entree): "I'm looking there now, I'm looking there now" (Josef) 9
Rasch indeed (Ps), op. 409 Sophienbad-Saal
January 29, 1883
Vol. 23 Act I, No. 2: “Hello, my dear child! - Good day, sir! "(Graf-Franziska) 18-19
Seraglio Dances (W), op.5 (Introduction) Dommayers Casino
November 19, 1844
Vol. 4 Act I, No. 5: "Des Landes Reuss-Schleiz-Greiz Verweser ..." (Minister) 39-40
City and Country (PM), op. 322 Flower halls of the Gartenbau-Ges.
January 19, 1868
Vol. 18 Act I, No. 2: "Every now and then you have to be with the woman" (Graf) 22nd
Waldine (PM), op.385 Musikverein
December 7, 1879
Vol. 11 Act I, No. 5: "I know what you want to explain and can only applaud" (Minister) 49
Wine, Woman and Song (W), op.333 (Waltz 1) Dianabad Hall
February 2, 1869
Vol. 27 III. Act No. 13: "Toast, toast, you darling mine" (Graf) 160-164
Wine, Woman and Song (W), op.333 (Waltz 2) Dianabad Hall
February 2, 1869
Vol. 27 Act II, No. 11: "The ladies allow me to make them known" (Minister) 119-122
Wine, Woman and Song (W), op.333 (Waltz 3a) Dianabad Hall
February 2, 1869
Vol. 27 Act II, No. 11 (p. 130): “It's fun, I can see it clearly” (Graf) and (p. 140) “The Viennese city, it has a symbol” (ensemble) 130, 131, 140, 141
Wine, Woman and Song (W), op.333 (Waltz 3b) Dianabad Hall
February 2, 1869
Vol. 27 II. Act, No. 11: "And I haven't found him, I'm a sheep" (Josef + Ensemble) 127-129
Wine, Woman and Song (W), op.333 (Waltz 4a) Dianabad Hall
February 2, 1869
Vol. 27 III. Act No. 14: “Smart and fine! Smart and fine! Everything wants to be conquered! "(Countess) 168-171
Wine, Woman and Song (W), op.333 (Waltz 4b) Dianabad Hall
February 2, 1869
Vol. 27 Act II, No. 11: “Ha, ha, ha! Hold me there for the best! "(Ensemble) 132-133
Wiener Blut (W), op.354 (waltzes 1a + b) Musikverein
April 22, 1873
Vol. 32 Act II, No. 7: “Viennese blood, Viennese blood! Own juice full of power, full of embers! "(Graf-Gräfin) 85-87, 89
Wiener Blut (W), op.354 (Waltz 1a) Musikverein
April 22, 1873
Vol. 32 III. Act No. 15: “Viennese blood, Viennese blood! Own juice full of power, full of glow! "(Ensemble and choir) 172-174
Wiener Blut (W), op.354 (Waltz 4a) Musikverein
April 22, 1873
Vol. 32 Act II, No. 11: “Yes, but - so be silent! - I know - Shut up! "(Josef-Pepi) 126-127
Wildfire (Pf), op.313 Volksgarten
November 18, 1866
Vol. 40 Act I, No. 4: "Wish good morning Mr. von Pepi" (Pepi-Josef) 33
Where the lemons bloom (W), op.364 Teatro Regio di Torino
May 9, 1874
Vol. 2 Act I, No. 8: "What use is my good intention?" (Graf) 91

Music numbers after the score

The following list of numbers is taken from the piano reduction of the operetta, published under the number CRZ 1020 by Musikverlag Cranz Mainz.

No. 1a song: I'm looking there now, I'm looking there now (Josef)

No. 1b duet: Pepi, he? (Franzi, Josef)

No. 2 duet: Grüß Gott my dear child (Franzi, Graf)

No. 3 Duet: So write and don't smear (Graf, Josef)

No. 4 Duet: Wünsch gut'n Morgen Herr von Pepi (Pepi, Josef)

No. 5 Finale I: There it is! O cruzineser (all)

No. 6 Polonaise: Oh who counts the many names (choir)

No. 7 Duet: I can't forgive one thing ... Viennese blood (Countess, Count)

No. 8 song: When I became her husband (Count)

No. 9 Scene and Duettino: Take my sweet darling (Graf, Pepi, Josef)

No. 10 Lied: At the Vienna Congress (women's choir)

No. 11 Finale II: A, now it's time to operate (all)

No. 12 between act music and G'stanzeln: Go and sell it with G'wand (Pepi, Lissi, Lori)

No. 13 Sextet: O come and don't hesitate any longer (Franzi, Pepi, Countess, Count, Josef, Minister)

No. 14 So we want to ally (Franzi, Countess)

No. 15 final song (Finale III): Wiener Blut (all)

Film adaptations

Wiener Blut (1942) : The popular film adaptation by Willi Forst from 1942 was already produced in Germany and presented an unscathed Austrian world in the middle of World War II . The close ties between Mussolini's dictatorship and National Socialist Germany created the framework for the Venice Film Festival to award the film the Premio della Biennale that same year .

Another film adaptation directed by Hermann Lanske with Benno Kusche , René Kollo , Ingeborg Hallstein , Fritz Muliar and Dagmar Koller in the leading roles appeared in 1972 as a co-production by ZDF and ORF.


The rock singer Falco named his fifth album and the accompanying title track in 1988 after the operetta, the German metal band Rammstein did the same with the eighth song on the album " Liebe ist für alle da ": This is also called "Wiener Blut", but uses the title as a cynical metaphor for the Josef Fritzl case . In 1987 the Slovenian industrial band Laibach adapted the Viennese Blood Waltz for incidental music to the avant-garde play "Krst pod Triglavom" ("Baptism under Triglav ") by the New Slovenian Art theater group "Rdeči Pilot" ("The red Pilot ”), which thematized the history of Slovenia including the past affiliation to Austria .

In 2008, the director Cordula Däuper presented Wiener Blut at the Hebbel Theater in Berlin in a purely female cross-dressing production that re-examined the play in terms of the “heterosexual matrix of gender roles” in the sense of Judith Butler. About the gender aspect as well as the question of whether librettist Victor Léon designed a new, modern ideal of women in this operetta with Countess Zedlau that fits the maxims of the magazine Die Hausfrau , where he was editor for many years, was discussed at the conference Tanz-Signals discussed for the first time in Vienna in 2015. In Kevin Clarke's lecture there was also the topic that Count Zedlau can be interpreted as a sex addict in the modern sense of the word who suffers from the “tyranny of lust” (“If a tempter knocks on the door, then she is forgotten Morality. I think: 'Just one more time! From tomorrow on I'll be solid!' Oh, dear God! It's an old song! And tomorrow, oh, yes then ... I'll start over! ").

Further references to the term "Viennese blood"

Friedrich Schlögl published the first part of his writings at the beginning of 1873, most of which had appeared under the title "Kleine Culturbilder aus Wien" in the features section of the Neues Wiener Tagblatt , under the title "'Wiener Blut': Kleine Culturbilder from Volksleben in the old imperial city". The book was a great success. Ferdinand Kürnberger and Ludwig Anzengruber joined in the praise of many others. "Schlögl wrote the best fictional ethnography about the Viennese, was a 'social guide', the author was 'the conscience of Vienna'."

On April 20, 1873, Leopold of Bavaria married Gisela of Austria . A number of glamorous parties were celebrated around this occasion. On April 22nd, 1873, the staff of the kk Hof Opera Theater organized a court opera ball in the Golden Hall of the Vienna Musikverein . The waltz with the title borrowed from Schlögl was premiered by Johann Strauss.

Individual evidence

  1. a b c Helmut Reichenauer: Thoughts on the operetta “Wiener Blut” . In: Kulturverein "Wiener Blut" (Ed.): Almanach - The magical world of the Strauss family . Almanac No. 1, October 2011, o. S. (counted in this work p. 6)
  2. Helmut Reichenauer: Thoughts on the operetta "Wiener Blut" . In: Kulturverein "Wiener Blut" (Ed.): Almanach - The magical world of the Strauss family . Almanac No. 1, October 2011, o. S. (counted in this work p. 7)
  3. The information follows Helmut Reichenauer: Thoughts on the operetta "Wiener Blut". In: Kulturverein "Wiener Blut" (Ed.): Almanach - The magical world of the Strauss family. Almanac No. 1, October 2011, n.p. (counted pp. 12-14)
  5. Wolfgang Fuhrmann: Happy gender studies is offered by “Wiener Blut” at the Hebbel Theater. Keep kissing little hands . In: Berliner Zeitung . Berlin October 4, 2008 ( [accessed August 20, 2016]).
  6. Kevin Clarke: “Wiener Blut”: An explosive gender comedy about the instinctual life of everyone involved. In: Operetta Research Center. April 14, 2015, accessed August 20, 2016 .
  7. ^ Friedrich Schlögl: "Viennese Blood" Small cultural images from the popular life of the old imperial city . 1st edition. C. Rosner, Vienna 1873 ( online in the Google book search [accessed on August 20, 2016]).
  8. Michael Mönninger, Klaus Semsroth, Mario Schwarz (ed.): Writings on urban development and architecture (=  Camillo Sitte complete edition . Volume 2 ). Böhlau Verlag, Vienna 2010, ISBN 978-3-205-78566-8 , pp. 18 ( limited preview in Google Book Search [accessed August 20, 2016] footnote 22).
  9. STRAUSS II, J .: Edition - Vol. 32 - About this Recording - "Wiener Blut", Walzer, op. 354. Naxos Records, 1992, accessed on August 20, 2016 .