Franz Xaver Neruda

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Franz Xaver Neruda

Franz Xaver Neruda (born December 3, 1843 in Brno , Austria-Hungary , † March 19, 1915 in Copenhagen ) was a Danish, romantic composer of Moravian origin.


Franz Xaver Neruda was the fifth child of the cathedral organist of Brno Cathedral , Josef Neruda (born January 16, 1807 in Mohelno , Trebitsch district, † February 18, 1875 in Brno). Franz Xaver grew up with his musically gifted siblings in Vienna, first learned the violin from his father , from 1852 after the death of his brother Viktor Neruda , who had learned the cello , autodidactically this too. With his father and four siblings, he performed successfully as a cellist throughout Europe in the Neruda Quartet and as a soloist. In 1859 he studied the cello with Adrien-François Servais for six months . His sister Wilhelmine Neruda (1839–1911) became an important violinist.

From 1864 to 1869 Franz Xaver Neruda was a member of the royal chapel in Copenhagen . On December 3, 1868 he founded the Chamber Music Association there and was appointed royal chamber musician the following year. In 1869 he married the ballet dancer Camilla Cetti , lived as a freelance virtuoso in England from 1869 to 1879, then again in Copenhagen as director of the string quartet he founded, from 1889 to 1891 - appointed by Anton Rubinstein as successor to Karl Juljewitsch Dawidow - as professor of cello at Saint Petersburg Conservatory . In 1891 he became the conductor of the Musikverein in Stockholm, and in 1892 of the Musikforeningen in Copenhagen as the successor to Niels Wilhelm Gade . In 1893 he received a professorship for cello ( Royal Danish Music Conservatory ) in Copenhagen. After Franz Xaver Neruda's death in 1915, Carl Nielsen succeeded him in the management of the Copenhagen Music Association and composed a prologue for recitation and orchestra “In memoriam Franz Neruda” . His now little-known compositions successfully combine Bohemian-Moravian and Northern European musical traditions.


The compositions of Franz Xaver Neruda include five cello concertos, four quartets and three orchestral works, primarily smaller pieces for piano, organ, cello and violin as well as songs.

  • The Concerto for Violoncello and Orchestra No. 2 in D minor (op. 59) belonged to the repertoire of every cellist, according to older editions of music, past and present .
  • The concertos for violoncello and orchestra No. 1 in E minor (op. 57), No. 3 in A major (op. 60) and No. 5 in G major (op. 66) were published in May 2005 by the Anhalt Philharmonic Orchestra Dessau premiered under Golo Berg with cellist Beate Altenburg . The double CD Cello concertos recorded on this occasion is currently the only generally available sound carrier with works by the composer.


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