Vanda (overture), Op. 25, B97

Opus number


Burghauser catalogue number


Date of composition

August 1879 – October (?) 1879

Premiere - date and place

13 February 1880, Prague

Premiere performer(s)

Provisional Theatre Orchestra, conductor Adolf Čech

First edition

piano reduction: August Cranz, Leipzig (without date)

Main key

G minor


2 flutes, 2 oboes, 2 clarinets, 2 bassoons, 4 horns, 2 trumpets, 3 trombones, timpani, violins, violas, cellos, double basses


approx. 9 min.

The opera Vanda, which Dvořák wrote in 1875, had only a brief orchestral introduction. When preparations for a new production of the opera were under way at the National Theatre four years later, Dvořák decided to write a new overture for the occasion. The outcome was an impressive, invigorating piece of music dominated by lively rhythms. The overture develops the thematic material of the opera itself, above all, the syncopated theme which, in Act 3, is associated with the character of the witch Homena, and with the motif of Slavoj’s aria from Act 1. The work is written in rondo form, A–B–A–C–A–C–B–A.