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By John C. Tibbetts

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The affair is a great success, but Vickie, who has been unaware of his feelings, now rejects his proposal. She is in love with a dashing soldier, Count von Hohlenberg (Carl Esmond), whom she cannot marry because of a rule prohibiting professional soldiers to marry beneath their class. Realizing that Vickie’s happiness is more important than his own, Schubert hides his tears and intervenes with the Archduchess to overturn the law and allow the lovers to marry. Schubert sings his own ‘‘Ave Maria’’ at the church wedding.

Displayed Hollywood’s typically sumptuous production values. ’’≥Ω The Great Waltz was based on an operetta of the same name with book by Moss Hart, which had premiered at Radio City on 22 September 1934. ’’ Of the rivalry with his father, there is nary a trace. The story is allowed to carry forward to Strauss’s involvement with the Viennese Revolution of 1848 and beyond, to his last years as the Waltz King idol of Vienna at the end of the century. By contrast to the quaint theatrical artifice of the Hitchcock film, this version is served up in an extravagantly cinematic concoction of dazzling camera work and spectacular image-and sound montage sequences.

By no means coincidentally, it 18 The Classical Style 19 also was the ‘‘golden age’’ of the composer biopic, both classical and popular (the popular songwriter biopics are discussed in Chapter Two). , RKO, and Twentieth Century-Fox), by the ‘‘Little Three’’ studios (United Artists, Universal, and Columbia), and by smaller, independent studios (such as Republic and Disney). Under the supervision of the moguls—Louis B. Mayer, Harry Cohn, Darryl F. Zanuck, Jack Warner, Walt Disney, and others—and through their respective distribution networks and theater chains, a ‘‘consistent system of production and consumption, a set of formalized creative practices and constraints, and thus a body of work with a uniform style, a standard way of telling stories, from camera work and cutting to plot structure and thematics’’ was established.

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