Janecek, Karel

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Janeček, Karel

Janeček, Karel, Czech composer and music theorist; b. Czestochowa, Poland, Feb. 20, 1903; d. Prague, Jan. 4, 1974. He spent his boyhood in Kiev. After completing his secondary education at an industrial school, he went to Prague, where he took courses in composition with Křička (1921–24) and Novak (1924–27). From 1929 to 1941 he taught at the Plzen Music School; then was prof, of composition at the Prague Cons. (1941–46). He subsequently helped to found the Prague Academy of Music (1947), where he taught; was a prof, there (from 1961). In his early works, Janecek adopted a traditional national style; later he occasionally employed a personalized dodecaphonic scheme.


ORCH.: Overture (1926–27); 2 syms. (1935-40; 1954-55); Lenin, symphonic triptych (1953); Legend of Prague, overture for Strings (1956); Fantasy (1962-63); Sinfonietta (1967); Large Symposium for 15 Soloists (1967). CHAMBER: 3 string quartets (1924, 1927, 1934); Divertimento for 8 Instruments (1925–26); String Trio (1930); Trio for Flute, Clarinet, and Bassoon (1931); Duo for Violin and Viola (1938); Violin Sonata (1939); Divertimento for Oboe, Clarinet, and Bassoon (1949); Cello Sonata (1958); Little Symposium, suite for Flute, Clarinet, Bassoon, and Piano (1959); Duo for Violin and Cello (1960); Chamber Overture for Nonet (1960); Quartet for Flute, Oboe, Clarinet, and Bassoon (1966). Piano: Trifles and Abbreviations (1926); Tema con variazioni, inspired by the Nazi destruction of the village of Lidice (1942). VOCAL: Choral works, including To the Fallen (1950-51), To the Living (1951), and My Dream (1972); songs.


(all publ, in Prague): Otakar Šin (1944); Hudebnt formy (Musical Forms; 1955); Melodika (1956); Vyjadfeni souzvukv (The Writing of Chords; 1958); Harmonie rozborem (Harmony Through Analysis; 1963); Zaklady moderni harmonie (The Basis of Modern Harmony; 1965); Tektonika (Structure; 1968); Tvorba a tvurci (Creativity and Creations; 1968); Skladatelska prace ν oblasti klasické harmonie (Composition Based on Classical Harmony; 1973).

—Nicolas Slonimsky/Laura Kuhn/Dennis McIntire