Dvořák (1841-1904) is the most important composer from the
Republic, who led the nationalist movement in music in that country.
romantic music reflects the influence of folk music
and Czech dance rhythms such as the furiant, whilst it remains in the classical
forms developed by Beethoven and Brahms.
Dvořák's father was the village
butcher, but Antonin started learning the violin when young, and was allowed to
study music at the Prague Organ school. He then became principal viola in the
Theatre orchestra, and started to compose and teach.
By 1874 he had
written 4 symphonies, but his big break came when Brahms
recognized his genius and championed his music. It became well-known in England
and USA. In 1892, at age 50, he went to New York to become director of the
national Conservatory of Music, where he stayed for 3 years. In USA he wrote
"New World Symphony"- his best known work, and American Quartet, and
his Cello Concerto. Then he returned to Prague in 1895, where he wrote many
important works before he died in 1904.