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Richard Strauss

Born in Munich, Germany, in 1864, Richard Strauss was a leading composer of the modern orchestra and a master of composing for the human voice. The son of an eminent horn player, Franz Strauss, he was trained in music at home from the age of 4 and later attended the University of Munich. His early works were strongly influenced by the classical and romantic masters. These include Burleske for piano and orchestra (1885) and a symphonic fantasy Aus Italien (1887). In the period, 1887 to 1904, he developed the symphonic poem to a high degree and made a notable contribution to the repertory of program music.

Video and Audio

Strauss's Elektra

Obsessed with her father's death, Elektra will stop at nothing until his death is avenged, but when her brother returns from exile and carries out her wishes, the mental strain proves too much for her, as the opera ends in a frenzied dance of vengeance.

Strauss' Ariadne auf Naxos

Washington National Opera presents Ariadne auf Naxos, directed by Chris Alexander and conducted by Andreas Delfs, Oct. 24 to Nov. 13, 2009 at the Kennedy Center Opera House

Understanding the Music: Strauss - Till Eulenspiegel's Merry Pranks, Op. 28

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