July 3, 1854
Hukvaldy, Moravia, Austrian Empire
August 12, 1928 in Ostrava, Czech Republic due to pneumonia
Also Known As:
He was a Czech composer of the 20th century who supported the nationalist tradition in music.
Type of Compositions:
Janácek is primarily known for his operas, he also wrote orchestral pieces, choral works, chamber music, piano music and song cycles.
Leoš Janácek pursued his music studies at conservatories in Leipzig, Prague and Vienna. He became a music teaher at Brno, Moravia's capital, where in 1881 he founded an organ school. That same year, he became music director of the Czech Philharmonic Orchestra; a post which lasted until 1888. By 1919, Janácek was teaching composition at Prague Conservatory. He was a collector of Moravian folk songs and these influenced his compositions.
His notable works include Hudební Listy (published journal), "Šárka," "Jenùfa," "Vìc Makropulos," "Z mrtvého domu," "Výlet pana Brouèka do Mĕsíce," "Výlet pana Brouèka do XV stol," "Pøíhody Lišky Bystroušky," "Glagolská mše," "Zápisník zmizelého," "Øikadla," "Kát’a Kabanová," "Sonata," "Po zarostlem Chodnicku," "V mlhach," "Sumarovo dite," "Taras Bulba," "Zapisnik zmizeleho," "Kreutzer Sonata," "Listy Duverne," "Mladi," "Sinfonietta" and "Glagolitic Mass."
Janácek married Zdenka Schulzova in 1881 and they had two children; a boy and a girl. However, their marriage was mostly strained. Around 1916 he met and fell in love with Kamila Stosslova who would inspire some of his later works.
Listen to Leoš Janácek's "Sinfonietta" performed by the National Youth Orchestra of the Netherlands courtesy of YouTube.