Tuma, Franz (actually, Frantisek Ignac Antonin Tuma)

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Tuma, Franz (actually, Frantisek Ignac Antonin Tuma)

Turna, Franz (actually, František Ignác Antonin Tůma), Czech viola da gambist, theorbist, and composer; b. Kostelec, Oct. 2, 1704; d. Vienna, Jan. 30, 1774. He began music studies with his father, a Kostelec organist. After serving as a chorister at the Minorite church of St. James in Prague under B. Cerno-horsky, he went to Vienna. By 1722 he was a vice-Kapellmeister; by 1731 he was Compositor und Capellen-Meister to Count Franz Ferdinand Kinsky, the High Chancellor of Bohemia, who made it possible for him to receive counterpoint lessons from Fux. He was Kapellmeister to the dowager Empress Elisabeth (1741-50), and thereafter remained active at the court as a viola da gambist, theorbist, and composer. About 1768 he went to the Premonstratensian monastery in Geras, but returned to Vienna shortly before his death. He was praised as both an instrumentalist and a composer by his contemporaries. Among his works are some 60 masses, 3 Magnificats, a Te Deum, 29 vespers and Psalms, 25 motets, offertories, and graduais, 20 litanies,13 Marian antiphons, 8 hymns, 13 sinfonias, 18 partitas for Strings, 16 sonatas, and a Fugue for Organ. Several of his instrumental works have been ed. in Musica Antiqua Bohémica, LXVII (1965) and LXIX (1967).


O. Ball, Franz Turna (diss., Univ. of Vienna, 1901); A. Peschek, Die Messen von Franz Turna (diss., Univ. of Vienna, 1956; includes thematic catalogue and list of MS sources).

—Nicolas Slonimsky/Laura Kuhn/Dennis McIntire