Thursday, May 11, 2017

Bedřich Smetana

Bedřich Smetana (1824 - 1884) is widely regarded as the father of Czech music.  He was born in 1824 in Litomyšl near the border between Bohemia and Moravia in what was then the Austro-Hungarian Empire.

He helped develop a distinctive Czech opera style.  As a composer he pioneered the musical style that become closely identified with aspirations of Czech statehood.

By 1874 he was completely deaf and had a mental collapse in 1884.  His contribution to music was recognised during his lifetime.  He is best known for his opera The Bartered Bride and his symphony Má vlast (My Homeland).

Here's a video I found out on YouTube of the Česká filharmonie, under Karel Ančerl in 1968, playing Má vlast.

Update:  Here's a memorial for Bedřich Smetana that I found here in Brno at Česká.

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