2/26/08

Composer of the Day!

Today's Composer of the Day! is Bedřich Smetana.

(1824-1884)

Smetana was a Bohemian (modern-day Czech Republic) composer. He is associated with the 19th century Nationalist movement.

This means, essentially, two things. First, his music was sometimes based on folk and national music from his...nation. Second, much of his music is about Bohemia (or Czechoslovakia), in one way or another. This includes topics about traditional Bohemian stories or folk heroes and stuff like that.

His most famous piece is a series of symphonic poems about Bohemia called "Má Vlast" (My Fatherland). Also famous is his opera "The Bartered Bride", the overture to which is often performed in symphony programs today. He wrote many other operas, and lots of symphonic music.

Lesser known are his chamber works, which are more biographical in nature. Or so the story goes.

He died in an insane asylum in Prague. He had a progressive neurological disease (possibly tinnitus). Back then, anyone with a neurological disease was deemed insane, I guess. Oh, well!

You can check out some music here and here and here.

Most importantly, perhaps, his name translates roughly to "Fred Sour Cream". Which is awesome.

You should listen to his music!
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3 comments:

Aaron said...

"Die Moldau" - which I think is from "Ma Vlast" - is awesome. I think that's the only piece of his I'm familiar with, but ... yeah. He good!

AnthonyS said...

Hah. Food metaphor tag again. Well done, sir.

Murderface said...

I wish my name was Fred Sour Cream. I'd always be like "Gimme more nachos, bitch! They don't call me Fred Sour Cream for nothing you know!"