Antonín Dvořák

Antonín Dvořák

  • Geboren
    8th September 1841
  • Gestorben
    1st Mai 1904
  • Geburtsort
    Nelahozeves, Czech Republic
Antonín Leopold Dvořák was a Czech composer. Following Bedřich Smetana, he frequently employed features of Moravian and Bohemian folk music. Dvořák's own style has been described as 'the fullest recreation of a national idiom with that of the symphonic tradition'. Born in Nelahozeves, Dvořák displayed his gifts at an early age: his first surviving work, Forget-me-not polka was written possibly as early as 1855. He graduated from the organ school in Prague in 1859. In the 1860s, he played as a violist in the Bohemian Provisional Theater Orchestra and taught piano lessons. In 1873, he married Anna Čermáková, and left the orchestra to pursue another career as a church organist. Dvořák's music attracted the interest of Johannes Brahms, who assisted his career; he was also supported by the critics Eduard Hanslick and Louis Ehlert. After the premiere of his Stabat Mater (1880), Dvořák visited the United Kingdom and became popular there; his Seventh Symphony was written for London. After a brief conducting stint in Russia in 1890, Dvořák was appointed as a professor at the Prague Conservatory in 1891. In 1892, Dvořák moved to the United States and became the director of the National Conservatory of Music in New York. However, shortfalls in payment, increasing recognition in Europe, and an onset of homesickness made him return to Bohemia. From 1895 until his death, he composed mainly operatic and chamber music. He left several unfinished works. Among Dvořák's best known works are his From The New World Symphony, the American String Quartet, the opera Rusalka and his Cello Concerto in B minor. Among his smaller works, the seventh Humoresque and the 'Songs my mother taught me' are also widely performed and recorded.