VIDEO PODCAST: Come and meet Eric Fraad of Heresy Records, Kenneth Woods, musical director of Colorado MahlerFest and the English Symphony Orchestra and others in our hour-long March 2021 video.
Bohemian composer, pianist and organist Jan Václav Voříšek was born on 11 May 1791 at Vamberk, now in the Czech Republic, and, encouraged by his father (who was the town's school teacher, choirmaster and organist), started to perform in public when he was nine. He studied philosophy at Prague University, and also studied piano and composition with Tomášek.
Failing to find enough work as a musician in Prague, he moved to Vienna in 1813 to study law, and also had piano lessons from Hummel, but again failed to find enough work. His wish to meet Beethoven (whose romanticism intrigued him) came true the following year, and he also met Spohr and Moscheles, and became friends with Schubert.
He completed his legal studies in 1821 but only worked in law briefly, finally finding employment as an organist the following year.
He became known as a composer of vocal, piano and orchestral music, including a single symphony in D, written in 1821, and sounding similar to early Beethoven and Schubert, and was also conductor of Vienna's Gesellschaft der Musikfreunde.
Voříšek died in Vienna, aged only thirty-four, on 19 November 1825.