John Stepan Zamecnik was an American composer and conductor. He is best known for the "photoplay music" he composed for use during silent films by pianists, organists, and orchestras. Zamecnik studied at the Prague Conservatory of Music under Antonín Dvořák in the mid-1890s, completing his classes there in 1897. In 1899 Zamecnik finally returned to the United States. While living in Cleveland, where he worked as a violinist and composer, he also played in the Pittsburgh Symphony Orchestra as a violinist under Victor Herbert. In 1907, Zamecnik became music director of the newly constructed Hippodrome Theater in Cleveland, Ohio. When the Hippodrome commenced with the screening of silent films, Zamecnik began to compose music scores for them. They were published by Samuel Fox,whose company was the first to publish original film scores in the United States.