Music on location

Bedřich Smetana
String Quartet No. 1 in E minor
"From My Life"

Panocha Quartet

Jiří Panocha - violin
Pavel Zejfar - violin
Miroslav Sehnoutka - viola
Jaroslav Kulhan - violoncello

Bedřich Smetana: String Quartet  No. 1 “From My Life”

The Panocha Quartet is one of the top Czech chamber ensembles. It was formed in 1968, while its members were still students at the Prague Conservatory. Its first great success was winning the 1975 Prague Spring International String Quartet Competition. Since then, the Quartet has achieved international fame. The Panocha Quartet has made many tours in the USA and Canada and has been a regular visitor to Great Britain, it has also performed in Australia, New Zealand, Japan, Israel, Mexico and elsewhere. The Quartet has participated in major international festivals including Edinburgh, Salzburg, Prague, Menton, Dubrovník, Tel Aviv, Kuhmo and Mondsee. In 1976, it was awarded the Bordeaux Gold Medal, and in 1982 the Supraphon Gold Disc. In 1983 the Grand Prix Academy Charles Cross was received in Paris for the recording of Martinů’s Quartet Nos. 4 and 6. The Panocha Quartet places particular emphasis on Czech music, especially the works of Smetana, Dvořák, Janáček and Martinů. Its extensive repertoire also includes the Viennese classics, notably Haydn, the great Romantic quartets, as well as those of twentieth century masters such as Bartók and Shostakovich.

Smetana's quartet “From My Life“ is quite exceptional in the sphere of chamber music in that its every movement has a programme suggestive of certain stages of the composer's life up to the tragic loss of his hearing.

Strahov Monastery is one of the most prominent sights in Prague. Since it was established in 1143, it has been a place where love of knowledge and art have been combined with service to God and people. The mysterious Romanesque Halls of the monastery provided a solemn setting for Smetana’s music.

director: Adam Rezek
time: 30 min.