ONCE a year for two hours, the grandeur and beauty of Imperial Vienna comes to Poole.

Admittedly it’s a tricky concept to get your head around, particularly if you are simply waiting for a bus at the station opposite.

But inside the Lighthouse on New Year’s Day with the Bournemouth Symphony Orchestra, you might just as well be in the Austrian capital with the Strauss family and friends for rousing and rip-roaring afternoon.

Viennese dance music, mainly waltzes and polkas, led the world and enjoys a lasting influence.

The first BSO concert of the new decade began with the Overture from the Johann Strauss favourite Vienna Blood, which to me epitomes everything about the city of dreams and its wonderful music.

Or as Young Conductor in Association, Marta Gardolinska, put it a little more succinctly, “a mash up of all things Viennese.”

Ms Gardolinska was the perfect fit for such a joyous, bouncy occasion (which it always is) with her athleticism, enthusiasm and energy at the podium.

What a delight her tenure at the BSO has been.

It was also an absolute joy to see and hear soprano Soraya Mafi appearing with the orchestra once again, with Voices of Spring and Adele’s Audition Song from Die Fledermaus.

There was much else to smile about.

Roses from the South, Chatterbox Polka, Offenbach’s Orpheus In the Underworld (Can Can) and of course the Blue Danube and always the audience participation finale, the Radetzky March.

It has been scientific proven that the rhythm of the waltz is good for the mind and the soul.

So anyone who leaves this concert without a smile on their face and feeling just a little better about things probably needs to have a word with themselves.