Josef Suk

Biography

Born: January 4, 1874   Died: May 29, 1935   Country: Czech Republic   Period: 19th/20th Centuries
Czech composer Josef Suk was born on January 4, 1874, in Krecovice, Bohemia, where his father was a choral director. The elder Josef Suk taught his son to play the piano, violin, and organ. In 1885, at the age of 11, Suk entered the Prague Conservatory. By 1888, he had composed a mass, the Krecovická mase; he received his degree in 1891, with what became the Op. 1 piano quartet as his thesis. When Antonín Dvorák became a Read more professor at the Conservatory, Suk stayed an extra year to study with him. Dvorák considered Suk his best student, and the two became personally close. In 1898, Suk married Dvorák's daughter Otilie.

Suk's compositional life may be divided into two periods. His early works are characterized by a late Romantic style that created a general perception of Suk as Dvorák's heir. Compared with Dvorák, Suk wrote little chamber music, but found success with the Four Pieces for violin and piano, Op. 17, written in 1900, and the Fantasy for violin and orchestra, Op. 24, of 1903, as well as with several solo piano works -- the "Song of Love" from the six piano pieces of Op. 7 became a standard recital piece. He wrote few songs and never approached opera, concentrating mainly on orchestral music. In 1892, he wrote the Serenade for Strings, Op. 6, which boosted his career when Brahms promoted it, much as Dvorák himself had benefited from the Viennese giant's support years before. In 1897 and 1898, he composed incidental music for the play Radúz a Mahulena, one of his most popular works and one that had resonances with Suk's own happy marriage. An optimistic mood is especially evident in the piano suites Jaro (Spring) Op. 22 and Letní dojmi Op. 22b, both written in 1902. It was during this time that his son was born.

In 1904, Suk's father-in-law and mentor Dvorák died, and 14 months later, in 1905, his beloved wife Otilie passed away. Their deaths had a devastating impact, and the beginnings of a second phase of Suk's career may be discerned in the works that followed. His compositions became more introspective, complex, and infused with emotion. Completed in 1906, the symphony Asrael, Op. 27, exemplifies this new phase. It is a massive work, considered by many the summit of his achievement. Suk began to experiment with polytonality, notably in his symphonic poem Zrání (Ripening) of 1917. He expanded upon the structure and language of Zrání in his symphony with soloists and chorus Epilog, completed in 1929; these three major orchestral works form a trilogy of vast, almost Mahlerian ambition and scope. Unlike his Czech contemporaries, Suk did not incorporate folk or literary motifs into his compositions. Interestingly, however, his final composition was a Czech dance entitled Sousedská.

Suk made a living largely as a performer and teacher, scheduling composing time around his daily responsibilities. The lack of chamber music in his oeuvre is all the more remarkable in view of his long tenure as second violinist of the Czech Quartet. The quartet's first concert took place in Vienna in 1893, where it received praise from Brahms, and Suk enjoyed international success with the quartet for forty years, remaining a member until he retired in 1933. In 1922 Suk assumed a professorship in composition at the Prague Conservatory, where he tutored such future Czech composers such as Martinu, Jezek, and Borkovec. He was twice appointed head of the Conservatory, serving from 1924 to 1926, and from 1933 until 1935. He died in 1935, at the age of 61. Read less

Biography

Born: January 4, 1874   Died: May 29, 1935   Country: Czech Republic   Period: 19th/20th Centuries
Czech composer Josef Suk was born on January 4, 1874, in Krecovice, Bohemia, where his father was a choral director. The elder Josef Suk taught his son to play the piano, violin, and organ. In 1885, at the age of 11, Suk entered the Prague Conservatory. By 1888, he had composed a mass, the Krecovická mase; he received his degree in 1891, with what became the Op. 1 piano quartet as his thesis. When Antonín Dvorák became a Read more
WORKS ALBUMS
TITLE/COMPOSER
LABEL
I. Allegro con brio
II. Andante cantabile con variazioni
III. Menuetto: Quasi allegro
IV. Finale: Prestissimo
I. Molto allegro ed agitato
II. Andante con moto tranquillo
III. Scherzo: Leggiero e vivace
IV. Finale: Allegro assai appassionato
No. 1. Mein Lied ertont, ein Liebespsalm (I chant my lay, a hymn of love)
No. 2. Ei, wie mein Triangel wunderherrlich lautet (Hark, how my triangle)
No. 3. Rings ist der Wald so stumm und still (Silent and lone the woods around)
No. 4. Als die alte Mutter (Songs My Mother Taught Me)
No. 5. Reingestimmt die Saiten (Tune the strings, oh gypsy)
No. 6. In dem weiten, breiten, luft'gen Leinenkleide (In his wide and ample, airy linen vesture)
No. 7. Horstet hoch der Habicht auf den Felsenhohen (Cloudy hieghts of Tatra)
Brahms: Sonata for Violin and Piano No.1 in G, Op.78 - 1. Vivace ma non troppo
Brahms: Sonata for Violin and Piano No.1 in G, Op.78 - 2. Adagio
Brahms: Sonata for Violin and Piano No.1 in G, Op.78 - 3. Allegro molto moderato
Brahms: Sonata for Violin and Piano No.2 in A, Op.100 - 1. Allegro amabile
Brahms: Sonata for Violin and Piano No.2 in A, Op.100 - 2. Andante tranquillo - Vivace - Andante - Vivace di piů - Andante vivace
Brahms: Sonata for Violin and Piano No.2 in A, Op.100 - 3. Allegretto grazioso (Quasi andante)
Brahms: Sonata for Violin and Piano No 3 in D minor, Op.108 - 1. Allegro
Brahms: Sonata for Violin and Piano No 3 in D minor, Op.108 - 2. Adagio
Brahms: Sonata for Violin and Piano No 3 in D minor, Op.108 - 3. Un poco presto e con sentimento
Brahms: Sonata for Violin and Piano No 3 in D minor, Op.108 - 4. Presto agitato
I. Allegro ma non molto
II. Largo
III. Allegro
I. Allegro risoluto
II. Larghetto
III. Scherzo: Molto vivace
IV. Finale: Allegro
Brahms: Sonata for Violin and Piano No.1 in G, Op.78 - 1. Vivace ma non troppo
Brahms: Sonata for Violin and Piano No.1 in G, Op.78 - 2. Adagio
Brahms: Sonata for Violin and Piano No.1 in G, Op.78 - 3. Allegro molto moderato
Brahms: Sonata for Violin and Piano No.2 in A, Op.100 - 1. Allegro amabile
Brahms: Sonata for Violin and Piano No.2 in A, Op.100 - 2. Andante tranquillo - Vivace - Andante - Vivace di piů - Andante vivace
Brahms: Sonata for Violin and Piano No.2 in A, Op.100 - 3. Allegretto grazioso (Quasi andante)
Brahms: Sonata for Violin and Piano No 3 in D minor, Op.108 - 1. Allegro
Brahms: Sonata for Violin and Piano No 3 in D minor, Op.108 - 2. Adagio
Brahms: Sonata for Violin and Piano No 3 in D minor, Op.108 - 3. Un poco presto e con sentimento
Brahms: Sonata for Violin and Piano No 3 in D minor, Op.108 - 4. Presto agitato
Sonata No.1 in G minor, BWV 1001 (1999 Digital Remaster): Adagio
Sonata No.1 in G minor, BWV 1001 (1999 Digital Remaster): Fuga (Allegro)
Sonata No.1 in G minor, BWV 1001 (1999 Digital Remaster): Siciliano
Sonata No.1 in G minor, BWV 1001 (1999 Digital Remaster): Presto
Partita No.1 in B minor, BWV 1002 (1999 Digital Remaster): Allemanda
Partita No.1 in B minor, BWV 1002 (1999 Digital Remaster): Double
Partita No.1 in B minor, BWV 1002 (1999 Digital Remaster): Corrente
Partita No.1 in B minor, BWV 1002 (1999 Digital Remaster): Double (Presto)
Partita No.1 in B minor, BWV 1002 (1999 Digital Remaster): Sarabande
Partita No.1 in B minor, BWV 1002 (1999 Digital Remaster): Double
Partita No.1 in B minor, BWV 1002 (1999 Digital Remaster): Tempo di borea
Partita No.1 in B minor, BWV 1002 (1999 Digital Remaster): Double
Sonata No.2 in A minor, BWV 1003 (1999 Digital Remaster): Grave
Sonata No.2 in A minor, BWV 1003 (1999 Digital Remaster): Fuga
Sonata No.2 in A minor, BWV 1003 (1999 Digital Remaster): Andante
Sonata No.2 in A minor, BWV 1003 (1999 Digital Remaster): Allegro
Partita No. 2 in D minor, BWV 1004 (1999 Digital Remaster): Allemanda
Partita No. 2 in D minor, BWV 1004 (1999 Digital Remaster): Courante
Partita No. 2 in D minor, BWV 1004 (1999 Digital Remaster): Sarabanda
Partita No. 2 in D minor, BWV 1004 (1999 Digital Remaster): Giga
Partita No. 2 in D minor, BWV 1004 (1999 Digital Remaster): Ciaccona
Sonata No.3 in C, BWV 1005 (1999 Digital Remaster): I. Adagio
Sonata No.3 in C, BWV 1005 (1999 Digital Remaster): II. Fuga
Sonata No.3 in C, BWV 1005 (1999 Digital Remaster): III. Largo
Sonata No.3 in C, BWV 1005 (1999 Digital Remaster): IV. Allegro assai
Partita No.3 in E, BWV 1006 (1999 Digital Remaster): I. Preludio
Partita No.3 in E, BWV 1006 (1999 Digital Remaster): II. Loure
Partita No.3 in E, BWV 1006 (1999 Digital Remaster): III. Gavotte en rondeau
Partita No.3 in E, BWV 1006 (1999 Digital Remaster): IV. Menuets I & II
Partita No.3 in E, BWV 1006 (1999 Digital Remaster): V. Bourrée
Partita No.3 in E, BWV 1006 (1999 Digital Remaster): VI. Gigue
Brahms: Piano Trio No.1 in B, Op.8 - 1. Allegro con brio
Brahms: Piano Trio No.1 in B, Op.8 - 2. Scherzo (Allegro molto)
Brahms: Piano Trio No.1 in B, Op.8 - 3. Adagio
Brahms: Piano Trio No.1 in B, Op.8 - 4. Allegro
Brahms: Piano Trio No.2 in C, Op.87 - 1. Allegro
Brahms: Piano Trio No.2 in C, Op.87 - 2. Andante con moto
Brahms: Piano Trio No.2 in C, Op.87 - 3. Scherzo (Presto)
Brahms: Piano Trio No.2 in C, Op.87 - 4. Finale (Allegro giocoso)


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