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Franz von Suppé

Franz von Suppé was an Austrian composer of light operas, notable for his four dozen operettas.

Suppé was born in what is now Croatia. He began music lessons and started to compose at an early age, his first extant composition a Roman Catholic Mass, which premiered in 1832. At 16, he moved to study law (not by his choice) yet continued to study music as well. He was eventually invited to Vienna by Franz Pokorny, the director of the Theater in der Josefstadt. In Vienna, after studying with Ignaz von Seyfried and Simon Sechter, he conducted in the theater, without pay at first, but with the opportunity to present his own operas there. Eventually, Suppé would write music for over a hundred productions at various theaters.

Suppé composed about 30 operettas and 180 farces, ballets, and other stage works. Though the bulk of Suppé's operas have sunk into relative obscurity, the overtures – particularly Dichter und Bauer (Poet and Peasant) and Leichte Kavallerie (Light Cavalry) – have survived and some of them have been used in all sorts of soundtracks for movies, cartoons, advertisements, and so on, in addition to being frequently played at symphonic "pops" concerts.

Exclusive Suppé Scores for Strings from Ovation Press

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