The Austrian-Hungarian composer Franz Lehár was born on April 30, 1870 in Komorn. He died on October 24, 1948 in Bad Ischl. In April 2020, his birthday turns 150.
As the son of a military bandmaster, Lehár early showed musical talent. From 1882, after attending the high, he studied violin, music theory and composition at the Prague Conservatory with Josef Foerster, Antonín Dvořák and Zdeněk Fibich among others. His musical career began as an orchestral musician in Barmen and Elberfeld. Afterwards he was a military bandmaster of the k.u.k. Army stationed in Trieste, Budapest and Vienna, among others. Thanks to some great successes, he was soon able to live solely on his compositional work.
Franz Lehár composed some vocal works, orchestral works, waltzes and even some operas. However, his main focus was on the operetta. Together with Oscar Straus, Emmerich Kálmán and Leo Fall, Lehár is one of the founders of the so-called “Silver Operetta Era”. His most famous works include “The Merry Widow”, “The Count of Luxembourg”, “Gypsy Love”, “The Tsarevich” and “Guiditta”.
The video shows Jonas Kaufmann and the Bavarian Radio Orchestra under the baton of Michael Guttler with the aria “Friends life is worth living” from the operetta “Guiditta”. The initial notes of the aria are also shown on the Hungarian stamp and the positive message of the text has not lost its validity even in these times of the Corona crisis.