The origins of this mythical music hall company are related to the elitist culture of the 20s and 30s in central Europe, in connection with the operetta and the Viennese cabaret. They had a significant presence in different shows of the Cabaret Simplicissimus, Vienna’s Moulin Rouge, Radio Wien, and other variety performances in different European halls. They are linked to musicians and artists like Josma Selim, Ernst Arnold, Fritz Grünbaum, Franz Engel, Karl Farkas, Fritz Löhner-Beda, Richard Eybner, Hermann Leopoldi, Fritz Wiessenthal, Leo Stoll…
In an unstable context between freedom, political distress and the existing situation, Arthur Kaps (Vienna, 1908-Barcelona, 1974) composer, songwriter, and stage manager, and Franz Joham (Graz, 1907-Barcelona, 1991), actor, comedian, singer, dancer and sketch maker, associate in 1934 and apply their experience to getting contracts for popular shows aimed to all audiences. They bring together a large company for the Viennese show Alles Für’s Herz, and tour the tumultuous Europe with magnificent stage sets and choreographies. In 1942, during War World II they move to Spain and settle in Barcelona.
In may 1942 they premiere All for the Heart at Teatro Comico in Barcelona. Audiences were surprised and deeply touched by the flood of scenic novelties, rhythm, light and colour, and soon embraced and adopted them with the nickname of The Viennese. Under this name, they captivated several generations of spectators for over two decades. Their new productions were continuously successful and turned them into a real social phenomenon of those years: Lights of Vienna (1943), That is Vienna (1944), Danube Melodies (1945), Dreaming Music (1947), Vienna Dreams (1948), Viennese Carrusel (1952), Spanish Circus (1953-54), Bells of Vienna (1955), Spring in Vienna (1956), Legends of The Danube (1957), The Viennese Circus (1959) and The Great Spanish Circus (1960).
With the launch of Spanish TV in Barcelona (1959), they became a standard reference. Their way of making programs improved Spanish television with shows like Tuesday Friends (1961), Monday Friends (1962), Starry Nights (1964-65), Saturday Night (1966), European Nights (1968), Tonight with…(1969) in which the best national and international artistic attractions made their appearance.
Arthur Kaps was a pioneer of TV music shows. He used to manage all the details of the show, such as offering contracts for the performances, organizing their sequence, reviewing the script, and even taking charge of the stage direction. His brilliant career behind the cameras gave the shows personality, variety and spectacularity. His persuasiveness and firm management became evident in several national and international music festivals, like Eurovision. Franz Joham was an icon of the first years of Spanish TV and his popularity was increased by his sense of humour, his nice smile and his Viennese accent.