The waltz principal melody was based on the waltz duet "Könnt' ich mit Ihnen fliegen durchs Leben" or 'Could I but fly with you through life' sung in Act 2 of the operetta. The operetta itself was a success at its first performance and Strauss long adopted the practice of opera composers to draft melodies from their successful stage works to be arranged as a new piece to boost sales of sheet music, thus he composed this 'Cagliostro-Walzer'.
The entire waltz consists of just 3 two-part waltz sections which is also a new Strauss development from the previous 5 two-part sections heard in his earlier works. The piece began with a loud march melody in the C major key before progressing into waltz time. The principal waltz theme in C major is also in the style of The Blue Danube, where three notes in rising melody starts off the waltz proper. Waltz 2A carries the principal key in C major as well but quickly interpolates with a more thoughtful passage in E-flat major. Waltz 3A starts off in F major in a hesitant mood, proceeding into a climax with cymbals. A brief coda enters and the entire Waltz 2B is repeated. After a short chorded passage, the swirling Waltz 1A recurs and Strauss signs off the waltz with a strong chord and long snare-drumroll.
Based on original text by Peter Kemp, The Johann Strauss Society of Great Britain. Used with permission.
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