WNO Orchestra open the Spring Season with their popular RETURN TO VIENNA tour which will see them perform a lively and heart-warming programme of the very best Viennese music, taking audiences across England and Wales into the new year.

Return to Vienna – WNO Orchestra

Resuming for the first time in three years, the 2023 Return to Vienna tour will consist of eight concerts in Swansea, Bangor, Newtown, Truro, Barnstaple, Cardiff, Southampton and Pembrokeshire. The concert will feature the glorious music of Johann Strauss II and Austrian-born American composer and conductor, Erich Korngold, a great champion of Strauss’s music, in a programme of timeless waltzes and polkas, transporting audiences to the Habsburgian capital and city of music.

WNO Leader and Concertmaster David Adams will lead the Orchestra and audience through a concert that includes some of the greatest waltzes ever known, including Strauss II’s instantly recognisable Blue Danube and Strauss I’s boisterous Radetzky March alongsideKorngold’s reminiscent Straussiana Polka, amongst other works.

Recently appointed WNO Associate Artist, baritone Dafydd Allen will also be joining the Orchestra to present a selection of magnificent arias; ‘Als flotter Geist’ from Strauss II’s The Gypsy Baron, ‘Mein Sehnen, mein Wähnen’ from Korngold’s Die tote Stadt, plus two Lehár numbers,‘Girls were made to love and kiss’ from Paganini and ‘O Vaterland… Da geh’ ich zu Maxim’ from The Merry Widow.

Dafydd told us…….

“I’m delighted to be joining WNO Orchestra for the Return to Vienna tour. My first few months as an Associate Artist have been personally fulfilling and professionally rewarding, and I am thrilled to now be embarking on this next stage of my journey with WNO.

I am incredibly excited to perform this fantastic array of Viennese music at such an eclectic range of venues across England and Wales.”

Tickets can be booked from each venue, including the Royal Welsh College of music and Drama in Cardiff on Friday 13th and St David’s Cathedral in Pembrokeshire on Saturday 21st January. For more information go HERE

WNO Associate Artist Dafydd Allen

January will also see WNO Orchestra perform Smetana’s MÁ VLAST (‘My Homeland’) in concert as part of St David’s Hall Classical Concert Series on Sunday 29th at 3pm under the baton of WNO Music Director, Tomáš Hanus.

Originally conceived as six individual works, Má Vlast cemented Smetana’s reputation as the father of Czech music. Its 1882 premiere in Prague provoked scenes of patriotic fervour with a ‘storm of unending applause […] repeated after each of the six parts’. Now recognised as a symphonic poem in six parts, each movement depicts an aspect of Bohemia, from its history to its countryside and legends. The concert at St David’s Hall is a rare chance to hear the work in its entirety, conducted by Tomáš Hanus, lauded for his masterful rendition of his compatriots’ music.

The concert will act as a precursor to the Orchestra performing Má Vlast at the opening concert of the Prague Spring International Music Festival on 12 May, the anniversary of the death of Bedřich Smetana – a tradition since 1952.

WNO Music Director Tomáš Hanus said……..

“When I hear Má Vlast, I ask myself how Smetana could have created something so original, so different.  Music has the power to go deeper than words, and in these times, the tones of Má Vlast bring out a self-awareness of who we are, how our history speaks to us and what meaning it has.”

Tomáš Hanus (Photo: Betina Skovbro)

Tickets for the concert at St David’s Hall, Cardiff on Sunday 29th January at 3pm, which are available from £5 – £42, can be booked HERE or by contacting the Box Office on 029 2087 8444.