Foerster, Josef Bohuslav


Foerster, Josef Bohuslav

Cyrano de Bergerac Op. 55, symphonic suite

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Josef Bohuslav Foerster – Cyrano de Bergerac, Op.55

(b. Prague , 30 December 1859 – d. Nový Vestec, near Čelákovice, 29 May 1951)

Andante con moto – Allegro. p.9
Andante Sostenuto. p.34
Allegro vivo – Cavalleresco con scherzo ironico. p.45
Allegro deciso – Andante amoroso. p.81
Andante sostenuto. P.121

Josef Bohuslav Foerster, born in Prague (still part of the Austrian Monarchy) on December, 30 1859: the third in a line of musicians of the same name. His talent and reputation greatly exceeded those that came before him. His mother died when he was very young, and he spent a lot of his time in the choir loft of the church where his father was the organist, which proved to be a strong influence on his later compositional style. His life was marred by several tragic deaths that affected him deeply: his mother; his sister and his brother; and his 16-year old son. He studied at the Prague Conservatory, was organist at several Prague churches and wrote as a music critic. In Hamburg, he spent ten years teaching at the conservatory, and he befriended Gustav Mahler, who became very musically influential. Foerster also met Bertha Lauterer, a leading Czech singer of the time who was working closely with Mahler. They were married in 1893. The years between 1903 and 1918 Foerster spent in Vienna, where taught at the University and wrote for Die Zeit. In this period a large output of instrumental works was created. Returning to Prague in 1918 the composer taught at the Prague Conservatory. In his later years he turned more to composing for chorus and voice, often based on religious texts. His style has a strong Czech vein in the tradition of Bedřich Smetana. Foerster died in Nový Vestec, in the Czech Republic on May 29, 1951. …


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