“Commissioned by Gustavo Dudamel for his 2017 New Year’s concert with the Vienna Philharmonic, my Caribbean reinterpretation of Strauss’ famous Tritsch-Tratsch Polka was deemed too osée for the occasion, yet the maestro recorded it that year, not in Vienna but in Caracas, with the fabulous performers of his orchestra, the Orquesta Sinfónica Simón Bolívar, and published it on the web as his musical New Year’s greetings card. The gesture was meaningful, and bold. I’m convinced that Johann Strauss, a man immersed in the fashions of his city and his time, would have loved the idea; a musical collage which carries in its banter a very strong aesthetic statement. The lightest and most frivolous things seem to always carry the deepest messages, let us not forget. ... ... Today, this version of my transformed Tritsch- Tratsch Polka for Symphonic Band created by Steve Boehm, will certainly tickle the Viennese in each and every one of us, and we will be very happy!”
Paul Desenne. Massachusetts, Nov. 2021
Paul Desenne (1959) is a Venezuelan cellist and composer, whose composition style fuses elements from native Latin American and European music. He studied cello and composition at the ‘Conservatoire National Supérieur de Paris’. After his time in Paris, he went on to join the 'Simón Bolívar Symphony Orchestra' and eventually became El Sistema’s resident composer and founder of the ‘Simón Bolívar Youth Orchestra’.
For the ‘Simón Bolívar Symphony Orchestra’ and their conductor Gustavo Dudamel, Paul Desenne composed in 2016 ‘Triqui-Traqui’, a ‘make-over’ of Johann Strauss’ beloved ‘Tritsch-Tratsch Polka’. ‘Triqui-Traqui’ gives you the idea as if you are walking in a South American city and music is playing: on the one hand you hear Strauss’ ‘Tritsch-Tratsch Polka’ and on the other hand the music that is so typical for South America. Like in a competition, they compete for the most attention but in the end, it seems that Strauss has won (or maybe not?).
The Luxembourg arranger Steve Boehm has arranged ‘Triqui-Traqui’ for Symphonic Band. A welcome addition to the traditional New Year's repertoire. But these Latin sounds would also fit perfect in a summer concert.