Bedrich Smetana

Composition Types

Biography

Born: Mar 2, 1824; Czech Republic   Died: May 12, 1884; Czech Republic   Period: Romantic
Bedrich Smetana was one of the great composers of his country's history and one of the leaders of the movement toward musical nationalism. His father was a violin teacher who gave Bedrich his first lessons and referred him to keyboard, harmony, and composition lessons when the boy requested them. His father tried to get Bedrich to apply himself in academics, but Bedrich was too focused on music to be a good student.
Bedrich Kittl,
Read more director of the Prague Conservatory, in 1844 found Smetana a job as a music teacher to the family of Count Leopold Thun while continuing music studies. He remained with the count for three and a half years, but he quit to undertake a concert tour, which turned out to be a financial failure.
Franz Liszt aided Smetana in finding a publisher for some early piano music and in 1848, Smetana founded a successful piano school.
Although he established a strong local reputation as a pianist, his piano compositions (mostly lighter works) did not earn him any special distinction as a composer.
In 1860, the Austro-Hungarian Empire granted internal political autonomy to Bohemia. A movement began to search for a genuine Czech voice in arts, including the establishment of a national theater. In 1862-1863, Smetana composed The Brandenburgers in Bohemia, his first opera, which was a success at its premiere on January 5, 1866. His next opera was Prodaná nevesta (The Bartered Bride), his most famous and enduring opera today, but a failure when it premiered on May 30, 1866.
In 1866, Smetana became conductor of the Provisional Theater, re-forming its administration and attempting to raise standards. His next opera, Dalibor (1871), was criticized for its Wagnerian elements. He had also written Libuse, but could find no producer. But in 1874, he had a large success with a light, popular opera, The Two Widows.
However, a severe whistling in the ears (graphically depicted in his autobiographical string quartet From My Life) led to deafness by the end of that year, symptoms of tertiary syphilis. He continued to compose and wrote his orchestral masterpiece Má Vlast (My Country) from 1874 to 1879. Three more operas were premiered successfully, including Libuse, but the last was The Devil's Wall (1882). By now, Smetana was seriously ill. The brain damage from syphilis led to madness, and he was confined to an asylum where he died. National mourning was proclaimed and he was given a burial at the Vyshehrad, one of the national sites depicted in Má Vlast. Read less
Smetana: String Quartets Nos. 1
Release Date: 05/12/2015   Label: Supraphon  
Catalog: 4172   Number of Discs: 1
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The Czech Legacy 2 - Smetana & Dvorak / Devich Trio
Release Date: 08/08/2006   Label: Challenge  
Catalog: 72158   Number of Discs: 1
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Work: The Moldau

Browse 76-100 of 125 Available Recordings
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  • 76.
    Fantasy
    Label: Mack Duo   Catalog: 5637530831 Release Date: 05/30/2006   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Felix Mendelssohn,  Bedrich Smetana,  Franz Schubert,  Sergei Rachmaninov  ... 
    Performer:  Yuki Mack,  Tomoko Mack
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  • 77.
    Scenes & Dances
    Label: Sophia Pallas And Julian Trail   Catalog: 5637424492 Release Date: 01/31/2006   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Ottorino Respighi,  Bedrich Smetana,  Edvard Grieg,  Felix Mendelssohn
    CD: $23.99
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  • 78.
    Famous Classics For Harp - Liszt, Et Al / Xavier De Maistre
    Label: Claves   Catalog: 2506 Release Date: 10/25/2005   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Bedrich Smetana,  Franz Liszt,  Béla Bartók,  Peter Ilyich Tchaikovsky  ... 
    Performer:  Xavier De Maistre
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  • 79.
    Rhapsodies - Liszt, Enesco, Smetana, Et Al / Stokowski
    Label: Rca Victor Living Stereo   Catalog: 67903 Release Date: 07/26/2005   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Franz Liszt,  George Enescu,  Bedrich Smetana,  Richard Wagner
    Performer:  Ralph Froelich,  Marilyn Wright,  Arthur Garnick,  Harvey Shapiro  ... 
    Conductor:  Leopold Stokowski
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  RCA Victor Symphony Orchestra,  Symphony of the Air
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  • 80.
    Masters Of Classical Music Vol 3 - Ponchielli, Et Al
    Label: Gega New   Catalog: 247 Release Date: 05/31/2005   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Carl Maria von Weber,  George Frideric Handel,  Bedrich Smetana,  Johannes Brahms  ... 
    Conductor:  Vassil Kazandjiev
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Sofia Symphony Orchestra
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  • 81.
    Green
    Label: Naxos   Catalog: 8557840 Release Date: 05/24/2005   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Camille Saint-Saëns,  Frank Bridge,  Bedrich Smetana,  Frederick Delius  ... 
    Performer:  Maria Kliegel,  Paul Gulda,  Jan Van Reeth,  Takako Nishizaki
    Conductor:  Jean-François Monnard,  James Judd,  Antoni Wit,  David Lloyd-Jones  ... 
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Bournemouth Sinfonietta,  New Zealand Symphony Orchestra,  Polish National Radio Symphony Orchestra  ... 
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  • 82.
    Radiance - Music For Wine And Candlelight
    Label: Denon Records   Catalog: 17488 Release Date: 03/08/2005   Number of Discs: 2
    Composer:  Gabriel Fauré,  Samuel Barber,  Claude Debussy,  Peter Ilyich Tchaikovsky  ... 
    CD not available
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  • 83.
    Ancerl & Scherchen - Great Conductors In Rehearsal And Performance
    Label: Video Artists International   Catalog: 4322 Release Date: 03/01/2005   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Bedrich Smetana
    Conductor:  Karel Ancerl
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Toronto Symphony Orchestra
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  • 84.
    Discover - Music Of The Romantic Era
    Label: Naxos   Catalog: 8558155-56 Release Date: 01/18/2005   Number of Discs: 2
    Composer:  Gioachino Rossini,  Sir Edward Elgar,  Sergei Rachmaninov,  Gustav Mahler  ... 
    Performer:  Ewa Podles,  Idil Biret,  Dong-Suk Kang,  Pascal Devoyon  ... 
    Conductor:  Piergiorgio Morandi,  George Hurst,  Michael Halász,  Jerzy Maksymiuk  ... 
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Hungarian State Opera Orchestra,  Bournemouth Symphony Orchestra,  Katowice Polish Radio/TV Symphony Orchestra  ... 
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  • 85.
    Silence Vol 2
    Label: Hänssler Classic   Catalog: 98449 Release Date: 08/01/2004   Number of Discs: 2
    Composer:  Various,  Bedrich Smetana,  Pietro Mascagni,  Franz Schubert  ... 
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  • 86.
    Best Of Wiener Philharmoniker - Vol 1
    Label: Deutsche Grammophon   Catalog: 4775077 Release Date: 07/01/2004   Number of Discs: 2
    Composer:  Antonín Dvorák,  Emmanuel Chabrier,  Peter Ilyich Tchaikovsky,  Bedrich Smetana  ... 
    Performer:  Anne-Sophie Mutter,  Leonard Bernstein,  Alfred Prinz,  Gidon Kremer  ... 
    Conductor:  Herbert von Karajan,  John Eliot Gardiner,  Valery Gergiev,  Sir Georg Solti  ... 
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Vienna Philharmonic Orchestra
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  • 87.
    Dvorák: Symphony No 9;  Smetana / Szell, Kubelik, Et Al
    Label: Avid Master Series   Catalog: 602 Release Date: 06/04/2004   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Bedrich Smetana,  Antonín Dvorák
    Conductor:  Rafael Kubelik,  George Szell
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Czech Philharmonic Orchestra
    CD: $14.99
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  • 88.
    Nationalistic Trends During The Romantic Era / Jordania
    Label: Angelok   Catalog: 7751 Release Date: 05/25/2004   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Frédéric Chopin,  Johannes Brahms,  Mikhail Glinka,  Bedrich Smetana  ... 
    Performer:  Tamera Kerzerov
    Conductor:  Vakhtang Jordania
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Russian Federal Symphony Orchestra
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  • 89.
    Dvorak: Symphony No 9 / Prague Piano Duo
    Label: Praga   Catalog: 250189 Release Date: 03/09/2004   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Bedrich Smetana,  Antonín Dvorák
    Performer:  Zdenka Hrsel,  Martin Hrsel
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Prague Piano Duo
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  • 90.
    Romance 2 Classic / Marriner, Hahn, Brown, Novak Quartet
    Label: Hänssler Classic   Catalog: 98439 Release Date: 08/26/2003   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Edvard Grieg,  Max Bruch,  Arcangelo Corelli,  Christoph W. Gluck  ... 
    Performer:  Pamela Frank
    Conductor:  Sir Neville Marriner,  Iona Brown,  Klaus-Peter Hahn
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Academy of St. Martin in the Fields,  Novák String Quartet,  Moscow Radio & TV Symphony Orchestra
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  • 91.
    Karajan - The Collection - Dvorak, Smetana /Berlin Po, Et Al
    Label: Deutsche Grammophon   Catalog: 000005302 Release Date: 04/08/2003   Number of Discs: 2
    Composer:  Bedrich Smetana,  Antonín Dvorák
    Conductor:  Herbert von Karajan
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Berlin Philharmonic Orchestra,  Vienna Philharmonic Orchestra
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  • 92.
    Die Moldau - Organ Transcriptions / Guido Harzen
    Label: Motette   Catalog: 1301 Release Date: 01/28/2003   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Bedrich Smetana,  Francesco Bendusi,  Charles Gounod,  Igor Stravinsky  ... 
    Performer:  Guido Harzen
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  • 93.
    Karajan Festival
    Label: Deutsche Grammophon   Catalog: 429436 Release Date: 10/29/2002   Number of Discs: 5
    Composer:  Johannes Brahms,  Alexander Borodin,  Peter Ilyich Tchaikovsky,  Bedrich Smetana  ... 
    Conductor:  Herbert von Karajan
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Berlin Philharmonic Orchestra
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  • 94.
    101 Great Orchestral Classics
    Label: Naxos   Catalog: 8550001 Release Date: 01/25/2002   Number of Discs: 10
    Composer:  Sergei Rachmaninov,  Erik Satie,  Peter Ilyich Tchaikovsky,  Johann Strauss Jr.  ... 
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  • 95.
    The Best Of Naxos Vol 9
    Label: Naxos   Catalog: 8551202 Release Date: 01/25/2002   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Giuseppe Verdi,  Antonio Vivaldi,  Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart,  Peter Ilyich Tchaikovsky  ... 
    Performer:  Stefan Schilli,  Hellen Kwon,  Maria Kliegel,  Gábor Fias  ... 
    Conductor:  Piergiorgio Morandi,  Michael Halász,  Gerhard Markson,  Alberto Turco  ... 
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Hungarian State Opera Orchestra,  Failoni Chamber Orchestra,  National Symphony Orchestra of Ireland  ... 
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  • 96.
    Smetana: The Moldau; Dvorák, Brahms, Borodin, Liszt / Barenboim, Et Al
    Label: Dg Galleria   Catalog: 415851 Release Date: 12/21/2001   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Alexander Borodin,  Johannes Brahms,  Antonín Dvorák,  Franz Liszt  ... 
    Conductor:  Daniel Barenboim
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Chicago Symphony Orchestra
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  • 97.
    New Year's Eve Concert, Berlin 1983 / Karajan, Berlin Philharmonic
    Label: Sony   Catalog: 46401 Release Date: 10/16/2001   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Josef Strauss,  Jean Sibelius,  Bedrich Smetana,  Gioachino Rossini  ... 
    Conductor:  Herbert von Karajan
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Berlin Philharmonic Orchestra
    DVD: $13.99
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  • 98.
    The Moldau / Libor Pesek, Royal Liverpool
    Label: Erato   Catalog: 59285 Release Date: 11/28/2000   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Bedrich Smetana,  Julius Fucik,  Oskar Nedbal,  Antonín Dvorák
    Performer:  Timothy Walden,  Malcolm Stewart
    Conductor:  Libor Pesek
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Royal Liverpool Philharmonic Orchestra
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  • 99.
    Classics For Kids By Kids / Paul Jan Zdunek, Et Al
    Label: Jamboree Records   Catalog: 3001 Release Date: 08/22/2000   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  John Mackey,  Johann Sebastian Bach,  Antonín Dvorák,  Bedrich Smetana  ... 
    Performer:  Jordan Hall
    Conductor:  Paul Jan Zdunek,  James Berg,  William LaRue Jones
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Greater Twin Cities Youth Symphonies
    CD: $7.99
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  • 100.
    Merit - Bruno Walter Conducts Tchaikovsky, Dvorák, Smetana
    Label: Music & Arts Programs Of America   Catalog: 4788 Release Date: 06/22/1999   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Peter Ilyich Tchaikovsky,  Bedrich Smetana,  Antonín Dvorák
    Conductor:  Bruno Walter
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Standard Symphony Orchestra
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1 2 3 4 5

Bedrich Smetana


WORKS
Smetana: Má Vlast (My Country) - 1. Vysehrad (The High Castle)
Smetana: Má Vlast (My Country) - 2. Vltava (The Moldau)
Smetana: Má Vlast (My Country) - 3. Sarka
Smetana: Má Vlast (My Country) - 4. Z ceskych luhu a haju (From Bohemia's Meadows and Forests)
Smetana: Má Vlast (My Country) - 5. Tábor
Smetana: Má Vlast (My Country) - 6. Blanik