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Vackar, Dalibor
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Dalibor C. Vackar

Vackar, Dalibor C. (Born: 19 September 1906; Died: 21 October 1984). Vackar Dalibor was born into a family with an esteemed musical history. His father, Vaclav Vackar (1881-1954) was renowned throughout Czechoslovakia for his contributions to Czech popular music, his works being played by village bands and brass orchestras around the country, and broadcast on radio. Whilst Vaclav had no formal musical training, he sent Dalibor to the Prague Conservatory, where he studied composition and violin. Following his graduation he attended numerous master classes, and undertook further compositional studies with Joseph Suk.

Both a talented violinist and a burgeoning composer, Vackar could have successfully followed either profession, but at that time, chose to follow his other love - literature. As a result, he predominantly worked as a dramatist and poet throughout the 1930s and 40s, winning many awards and presenting many successful plays. Whilst his interest in drama may have seemed to overshadow his work as a composer at this time, he remained an active member of the avant-garde scene, and also played as a violinist with the Prague Radio Symphony Orchestra.

As a composer, Vackar constantly attempted to find new ways to compose music that reflected his time. He composed in a wide variety of genres, and wrote for an eclectic mix of instruments. He wrote solo works and pieces for chamber music, and also composed four symphonies, two ballets and a number of vocal cycles. His inspiration in composing these works is reflected in his own words: "Music must mean beauty, an aesthetic experience in the true sense of the word. If a composer does not respect this requirement he does not write music."

His works include:

Orchestral Music: Symphony in D major (1941), The Chosen Land, vocal symphony (1947), Smoking Symphony (1948), Peace Symphony (1949), Prelude and Metamorphoses (1953), Symphonic Scherzo (1946), Sinfonietta for Strings, Horn and Piano (1959), Furiant - Fantasy for Orchestra (1959), Dances of the Nations, A Suite form the ballet Schwanda, the Bagpiper (1956), Suite from the ballet The Midsummer Nights Dream, (1961).

Chamber Music: Dedication, Four Pieces for Violin and Piano (1962), Dialogues for Violin solo (1961), Piano duo giocoso (1958), Concerto for String Quartet (1962), The Arch, a Fantasy on a theme by Schubert for Piano (1962), Smoking Sonata for Piano (1937), String Quartet (1931-32), Three Studies for Harpsichord (1962).

Instrumental Music: Czech Concerto for Piano and Orchestra (1952), Concerto da camera for Bassoon and String Orchestra, (1963), Characteristicon for Trombone and Orchestra (1966), Concerto in C major for Violin and Orchestra (1958), Concerto for Harpsichord and Chamber Orchestra, (1965), Concerto for Trumpet, Piano and Percussion (1966), Concerto for Clarinet and Orchestra (1966).

Vocal Music: Preamble to the United Nations Charter for mixed and Children's Chorus and percussion instruments (1966), Children to Grown-ups, a Rhapsody for Children s Chorus and Piano (1956), Daisies, Songs for Children's Chorus and Piano, (1947), Songs at Sewing for Female Voice and Piano or Female Chorus and Piano (1954), Songs for Parents, Six Lullabies for Female and Male Voice and Piano (1953), Three Love Songs for Soprano and Piano (1953), Love Songs, 22 Lieder for Middle Voice and Piano (1943).

Ballets: The Midsummer Nights Dream after Shakespeare (1960-61), Dilia Schwanda, the Bagpiper after J. K. Tyl (1958-59).

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