30th April 1870 --- 24th October 1948

Franz Lehár, was born April 30, 1870, In what was formerly known as Austria-Hungary in a place called Komárno which is now Slovakia, a Hungarian composer of who is mainly known for his light operettas and achieved worldwide success with Die lustige Witwe (The Merry Widow), and maybe got his love of music from his father who was a bandmaster in the Austria-Hungary infantry Regiment.

He was encouraged by Anton Dvorák at the Prague Conservatory. to focus on composing music, instead of going on as a solo violinist, Lehár began his career by travelling to Austria to be a bandmaster from 1890. In 1896 he produced his operetta Kukuschka.

In 1902 he became conductor at the Vienna Theatre an der Wien, he had his first opera “Wiener Frauen” which was performed in November of that year.

His fame lies in producing operettas – like the his most successful operetta “The Merry Widow” (Die lustige Witwe) which he in composed in 1905, he also wrote some sonatas, a few symphonic poems, marches, and a number of waltzes like “Gold und Silver” which was composed in 1902.

Lehár's relationship with the Nazi regime was an uneasy one although Lehár was Roman Catholic, his wife, Sophie had been Jewish before her conversion to Catholicism upon marriage. Although Hitler was said to enjoyed Lehár's music, there remained hostility to his wife. And they made attempts to have her deported but Hitler regime needed Lehár's music for propaganda purposes etc so she was tolerated and Lehar may have cultivated such ties to the Nazis as a way of sparing his wife.

He died Oct. 24, 1948 at the age of 78 1948 in Bad Ischl, near Salzburg, some of his many operettas composed by Lehár are better known under their English titles. Like of course his “The Merry Widow”(1905), “The Man with Three Wives” (1908), “Gypsy Love” (1910), “The Land of Smiles” (1923). and his grand opera, “Giuditta” (1934),. A couple of his operettas were made into films like the “The Merry Widow”. For more information on this composer check out the internet.

Last Updated on 11th October 2014
By Steven

And now for the Music

I am afraid that I could only find the title of one of the 4 pieces below when I checked the files and could find no reference to who sequence these sorry.

A Unknown piece, Sequencer Unknown

A Unknown piece, Sequencer Unknown

A Unknown piece, Sequencer Unknown

Within the file its named "La Veuve Joyeuse" Sequencer Unknown

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