Dvořák

Full Name: Antonín Leopold
Pronunciation: daVoor-jak
Era: Romantic
Years active: 1841-1904

Number of compositions: 206
Number of symphonies: 9
Number of concertos: 3
Number of string quartets: 5

Style: Medium romantic, with a dash of European folk music. Dvořák didn’t do anything too extreme with his compositions, its all composed in a pretty standard Romantic style. He did infuse it with folk music from his home country of Czechoslovakia, so you’ll hear some interesting melodies and rhythms popping up. He is also really famous for composing the New World symphony, when he was visiting the united states just before 1900. Despite lots of people associating this piece with America, there is actually a lot of debate over whether it was influenced by African-American music, native American music, or if it was still mostly Eastern European. Thats just another example of how interpreting music is such a subjective experience, even for the experts.

Symphony No. 9 (New World) 4th movement

Heres the final movement from Dvorak’s most famous piece. Do you hear some inspiration for the Jaws theme at the beginning?

Slavonic Dance No. 2

Dvorak has two sets of Slavonic dances, both of which are a series of separate movements done in Folky dance styles. They are particularly nice for beginners as the individual movements come in compact, chewable sizes.

Cello Concerto

Dvorak’s cello concerto is huge and sweeping and Romantic, and potentially involved the transmission of rare pigeons.

 

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