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The completion of Blindekuh, Johann Strauss II’s sixth operetta, was delayed by the death of his first wife Jetty and his immediate marriage to Angelika Diettrich. The work eventually received its first performance in 1878, four years after Die Fledermaus, although its overture had been aired earlier at a charity concert. The operetta itself had a cool reception, but the overture remained in the repertoire of the Strauss orchestras and military bands.

Blindekuh (literally ‘blind cow’), is the German term for the game of ‘blind man’s buff’. Following its initial sixteen performances, the work languished neglected, the least known of Strauss’ operettas, before being revived by Dario Salvi and the Sofia Philharmonic Orchestra in January 2019.

World Premiere Recording
STRAUSS II, J.: Blindekuh [Operetta]
Johann STRAUSS II (1825–1899)
Blindekuh (‘Blind Man’s Buff’)
Libretto by Rudolf Kneisel
after his comedy of the same name

Kirsten C. Kunle, Martina Bortolotti and Andrea Chudak, Sopranos
Emily K. Byrne, Mezzo-soprano • Roman Pichler, James Bowers,
Daniel Schliewa and Julian Rohde, Tenors • Robert Davidson,
Bass-baritone • Sofia Philharmonic Orchestra and Chorus
Dario Salvi

Blindekuh (‘Blind Man’s Buff’) was Johann Strauss II’s sixth operetta and his least known. Neglected for well over a century, it was revived by Dario Salvi and the forces on this album in January 2019. The work’s initial lack of success is hard to explain but it may have been caused by a confusing libretto – the music itself is vibrant and captivating with waltzes, polkas, mazurkas, marches and bel canto arias. Performed in a concert version without dialogue, and in accordance with performing traditions, this production restores the work to the status of one of Strauss’ most melodically seductive works.

Listen to an extract from Act I:
Welch' buntes Leben wird das hier geben
About the Artists
Dario Salvi is a conductor, musicologist and researcher who specialises in the restoration and performance of rare works. His passion is the rediscovery and performance of long-forgotten masterpieces by the likes of Suppé, Meyerbeer, Rumshinsky, Genée, Auber, and many others. He is collaborating with Naxos on recording a series of Romantic ballets, including works by Minkus, Pugni, Adam and others, and a series on Auber’s overtures and orchestral music.
Founded in 1928, the Sofia Philharmonic Orchestra has long established itself as one of the leading institutions in Bulgaria’s musical life, representative of the overall contemporary musical culture of the country. Throughout its history, the orchestra has worked with eminent conductors such as Bruno Walter, Hermann Abendroth, Kurt Masur, Gennady Rozhdestvensky, Valery Gergiev, Karl Österreicher, Neville Marriner, Charles Dutoit and others.
Other releases of operettas by Johann Strauss II
Jabuka (The Apple Festival)
Complete Operetta in Three Acts

Tischler • Veith • Schober
Groiss • Wolfbauer
European Johann Strauss Orchestra
Gaudeamus Choir Brno • Pollack
‘This excellent Naxos recording…brings out [the operetta’s] distinctive qualities, which suggest a similarity with the operetta-writing of Lehár.’
The Penguin Guide
Fürstin Ninetta

Åberg • Rombo • Gröndahl • Taube
Strid • G. Eliasson • O. Eliasson
Jarrick • Ninetta Chorus
Stockholm Strauss Orchestra • Csányi
‘The live recording is of a performance with Swedish personnel in Stockholm in October 2007. It’s altogether professionally done, with orchestra and chorus that are especially good.’
Eine Nacht in Venedig
(A Night in Venice)

Buckard • Gylbert • Christensson
Andersson • Larsdotter Persson
Meyer • Krawe • Hansson
Holmberg • Coro Notturno
Stockholm Strauss Orchestra • Eichenholz
‘For this recording…one can just lean back, shut one’s eyes, inhale the atmosphere and sing along—or just enjoy it…The standard of singing [is] good.’
MusicWeb International
Die Göttin der Vernunft
(The Goddess of Reason)

Groiss • Ma-Zach • Kumpfmüller
Equiluz • Cortes • Födinger
Slovak Sinfonietta, Žilina • Pollack
‘The orchestra, under Christian Pollack (who also arranged the reconstruction of the original score), gives a real shimmer to the music; and the soloists are excellent.’
American Record Guide
For the full list of Johann Strauss II titles on Naxos,
please visit

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