Wihan, Hans, (actually, Hanus), noted Czech cellist and pedagogue; b. Politz, near Braunau, Bohemia, June 5, 1855; d. Prague, May 1, 1920. He studied at the Prague Cons, with Frantisele Hegenbarth, and while still a young man taught cello at the Salzburg Mozarteum; completed his studies with C. Davidov. He played in orchs. in Nice, Prague, Berlin, Sondershausen, and Munich, and in 1888 succeeded Hegenbarth as prof, of cello and chamber music at the Prague Cons. In 1891 he formed the Bohemian String Quartet, selecting his four most talented pupils (Karel Hoffmann, Josef Suk, Oscar Nedbal, and Otto Berger). After Berger’s retirement in 1897, owing to ill health, Wihan himself took his place as cellist (until 1914); also toured widely as a soloist in Europe. In 1919 he resumed his position at the Prague Cons. Dvorak wrote his Cello Concerto for Wihan; however, the 2 had a falling-out and the first performance was given by Leo Stern. Strauss wrote his E-flat major Sonata for him.
—Nicolas Slonimsky/Laura Kuhn/Dennis McIntire