Jeremiáš, Otakar

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Jeremiáš, Otakar

Jeremiáš, Otakar, Czech conductor and composer, son of Bohuslav Jeremias and brother of Jaroslav Jeremiáš b. Pisek, Oct. 17, 1892; d. Prague, March 5, 1962. He began his musical training with his parents, then studied composition at the Prague Cons. (1907) and privately with Novak (1909–10). He also took cello lessons with Jan Burian. He was a cellist in the Czech Phil. (1911–13), and in 1919 took over his father’s music school. He then was conductor of the Prague Radio orch. (1929–45), and subsequently director of the Prague National Theater (1945–47). He was also the first chairman of the Union of Czech Composers. He was made a National Artist (1950) and received the Order of the Republic (1960). His music continues the traditions of the Czech national school, with a pronounced affinity to the style of Smetana, Foerster, and Ostrčil.


Dramatic:Romance o Karlu IV, melodrama 1917); Bratři Karamazovi (The Brothers Karamazov), opera, after Dostoyevsky (1922–27; Prague, Oct. 8, 1928); Enšpígl (Til Eulenspiegel), opera (1940–44; Prague, May 13, 1949); film scores. ORCH.: Písně jara (Song of Spring; 1907–08); Podzimní suita (Autumn Suite; 1907–08); 2 syms. (1910–11; 1914–15). CHAMBER : Piano Trio (1909–10); String Quartet (1910); Piano Quartet (1911); String Quintet (1911); Fantasie na staročeskě choraly (Fantasy on Old Czech Chorales) for Nonet (1938). Piano: 2 sonatas (1909, 1913). VOCAL : Fantasie for 2 Choruses and Orch. (1915; Prague Radio, Oct. 27, 1942); 2 cantatas: Mohameduv zpěv (1932) and Písně o rodně zemi (Song of the Native Land; 1940–41); songs.


J. Plavec, O. /. (Prague, 1943); idem, Ndrodni umelec: O. J. (National Artist: O. J.; Prague, 1964; includes list of works).

—Nicolas Slonimsky/Laura Kuhn/Dennis McIntire