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Musical Magic Along the Blue Danube

Updated: Jan 16

Tauck promised a trip full of music on its Musial Magic along the Blue Danube River Cruise, and it delivered. All the of the programs listed below were private concerts arranged just for the 41 guests of the trip, except Carmen at the Vienna State Opera. Tauck purchased main floor tickets for the opera months ago to ensure we could see this sold-out production.


Our trip leaders included a musical director, our Maestra and soprano Brittany Palmer, and two on-the ground tour directors Jen Graf (also a soprano) and Barbora Palkoskova, and the overall cruise director, Ester Pusztai. We also had an on-board lounge musician who played piano and saxophone in the late evening for anyone who still had energy after a full day of activities. (Image: Brittany sings on board the MS Joy.)


The very last performance lists Guest Choir. Brittany convinced more than a dozen of us to commit to learning two songs over four rehearsals, plus an extra session just to learn Czech pronunciations for one of the songs. It was great fun.


Music Programs

April 14—April 25, 2023


Hungarian State Opera House (Budapest)

April 15


“Quando m’en vò”, from La Bohème Giacomo Puccini

“O Columbina, il tenero fido” from I Pagliacci Ruggero Leoncavallo

“Esulti pur la barbara” from L’Elisir d’Amore Gaetano Donizetti

“Addio, addio” from Rigoletto Giuseppe Verdi


Liszt Academy (Budapest)

April 15


Sancta Dorothea, S. 187 Franz Liszt

Etude in C minor, op. 10, no. 12 Frederic Chopin

Fantasy in F minor, op. 49 Frederic Chopin


Music History Museum (Budapest)

April 15

Kodály Quartet with Csaba Király, piano Dr László Gombos, musicologist provided commentary


Piano Quintet in E-flat Major, Op. 44 Robert Schumann

String Quartet in D Major, Op. 20, No. 4 Joseph Haydn

III. Allegretto ala zingareses

Dreams of Love (piano solo) Franz Liszt

First Hungarian Dance Márk Rózsavölgyi

Piano Trio No. 25 in G Major Joseph Haydn

III. Rondo all’ongarese

Rhapsody, No. 13 Franz Liszt

String Quartet in F Major (“American”), Op. 96 Antonin Dvořák

IV. Allegro ma non troppo

Piano Quintet in C minor, Op. 1 Ernst von Dohnányi

1. Allegro


Bartok House (Budapest)

April 16


Hungarian Rhapsody, No. 8 Franz Liszt

Romanian Dance, No. 1 Béla Bartók

Consolation, No. 3 in D flat Major Franz Liszt

Hungarian Rhapsody, No. 10 Franz Liszt

Improvisation (in the style of Debussy) Csaba Király


Onboard the MS Joy

April 16

Brittany Palmer, soprano Jen Graf, soprano Paul Ridgeway, piano


Jewel Aria from Faust Charles Gounod

“Wie Melodien” Johannes Brahms

“Laudamus te” from Gloria Antonio Vivaldi

Sonetto 104 del Petrarca Franz Liszt

Sonetto 123 del Petrarca Franz Liszt

“Allerseelen” Richard Strauss

“Quando m’en vò”, from La Bohème Giacomo Puccini


Note: Brittany was our Tauck music director and Jen was one of our tour directors. Paul was a passenger who volunteered to be accompanist.


Zichy Palace (Bratislava)

April 17

Sayuri Šereš, cello Naoto Šereš, violin Takako Šereš, piano


The Swan Camille Saint-Saëns

Cello Suite No. 1, Allemande J.S. Bach

Sicilienne and Rigaudon Fritz Kreisler

Vocalise, Op. 34, No. 16 Sergei Rachmaninoff

Prayer Ernest Bloch

Largo and Allegro Antonio Vivaldi


On Board the MS Joy (Bratislava)

April 17


A program of jazz swing music. Dressed in period costume, Jana sang while the band played piano, guitar, banjo, sax, clarinet, and the rare slide saxophone.


Palais Kinsky (Vienna)

April 18

Pablo Cameselle, tenor Russi Nikoff, baritone. Maida Karisik, mezzo-sporano Claudia Camie, soprano and the Kaiserwalzer Orchestra

Bahn Frei Polka Eduard Strauss

Frühlingsstimmen (Voices of Spring) Johann Strauss, Jr.

“Dein ist mein ganzes Herz” Franz Lehár

from Das Land des Lächeilns

“Meine Lippen sie küssen so heiß” Franz Lehár from Giuditta

“Wien, Wien, nur du allein” Rudolf Siecaynski

“Brindisi” from La Traviata Giuseppe Verdi

“Lippen Schweigen” Franz Lehár

from Die Lustige Witwe

Eljen a Magyar Polka Johann Strauss, Jr.

“Joj Mamam” from Die Csárdásfürstin Emmerich Kálmán

Hungarian Dance, No. 5 Johannes Brahm

Tritsch-Tratsch Polka Johann Strauss, Jr.

Csárdás Vitorio Monti

“Schwipslied” from Eine Nacht in Venedig Johann Strauss, Jr.

“Als flotter Geist” from Zigeunerbaron Johann Strauss, Jr.

“Walzer” from Wiener Blut Johann Strauss, Jr.

“Im Feuerstrom” from Die Flaudermaus Johann Strauss, Jr.

Blue Danube Waltz Johann Strauss, Jr.

Radetzky March Johann Strauss, Sr.


Auersperg Palace (Vienna)

April 19

A rehearsal with the Vienna Residence Orchestra


Symphony No. 41 in C Major (“Jupiter”) Wolfgang A. Mozart

1. Allegro vivace

Frühlingsstimmen (Voices of Spring) Johann Strauss, Jr.


Vienna State Opera House (Vienna)

April 19

Carmen Georges Bizet


Carmen Eve-Maud Hubeaux

Don José David Butt Philip

Escamillo Erwin Schrott

Micaëla, Anna Bondarenko

Frasquita Ileana Tonca

Mercédès Isabel Signoret

Zuniga Ilja Kazakov

Moralès Stefan Astakhov

Le Remendado Carlos Osuna

Le Dancaïre Michael Arivony

Conductor Alexander Soddy

Production Calixto Bieito


Stadttheater (Grein)

April 20 Hausberg Musik, A concert of Austrian folk music


Günther Naderer, clarinet/okarina

Hans Käferböck, clarinet

Josef Reiter, accordion

Gerhard Fragner-Lieb, ruba


Mozarteum University (Salzburg)

April 21

Prof. Wolfgang Brunner, piano. Juliane Sophie Ritzmann, piano Marius Malanetchi, cello. Claire Winklefhӧfer, soprano


Sonata in D Major for 4 hands Wolfgang A. Mozart

Sonata in B-flat for cello Wolfgang A. Mozart

8 Variations on “A woman in the most beautiful Wolfgang A. Mozart thing in the world”

“Da schlägt die Abschiedsstunde” Wolfgang A. Mozart

from Der Schauspieldirektor “Der Zauberer” Wolfgang A. Mozart

Sonata for arpeggione and piano Franz Schubert


On Board the MS Joy (Linz)

April 21

Donau3Llang featuring members of the Bruckner Symphony

Vera Kral, violin. Betty Valik, cello. Maria Raberger, piano


Viennese March Fritz Kreisler

Trio in Bb, K. 254, 1st movement Wolfgang A. Mozart

Sicilienne Maria Theresia von Paradis

Frühlingsstimmen (Voices of Spring) Johann Strauss, Jr.

Csardas Vitorio Monti

S Wonderful George Gershwin

I Got Rhythm George Gershwin

Theme from Schindler’s List John Williams

“Edelweiss” from The Sound of Music Richard Rogers

Blue Danube Waltz Johan Strauss, Jr.


Dvorak Museum (Prague)

April 24


“Als die alte Mutter” Antonin Dvořák

“Reingestimmt die Saiten” from Zigeunermelodien

“Song to the Moon” from Rusalka Antonin Dvořák


Nelahozeves Castle (Prague)

April 24

Guest Choir

Paul Ridgeway, piano. Brittany Palmer, conductor


Ave verum corpus Wolgang A. Mozart

Moravian Duets, no. 3 Antonin Dvořák (arr. by Leoš Janáček)




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