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Karel Ančerl - JPop.com
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Karel Ančerl

Karel Ančerl

Karel Ančerl


Karel Ančerl (April 11, 1908 - July 3, 1973) was a great Czech conductor, respected for his performances of contemporary music and for his interpretations of music by Czech composers. His recordings with Czech Philharmonic Orchestra aquired many international awards (Golden Harmony, Grand Prix du disque) and digitalized set of them with the name “Karel Ančerl Gold Edition” (42 CD) was awarded by Grand Prix du disque de l´Académie Charles Cross. Read more on Last.fm
Karel Ančerl (April 11, 1908 - July 3, 1973) was a great Czech conductor, respected for his performances of contemporary music and for his interpretations of music by Czech composers. His recordings with Czech Philharmonic Orchestra aquired many international awards (Golden Harmony, Grand Prix du disque) and digitalized set of them with the name “Karel Ančerl Gold Edition” (42 CD) was awarded by Grand Prix du disque de l´Académie Charles Cross. Ančerl studied under Hermann Scherchen and later worked with Václav Talich, among others. From 1933 to 1939 he conducted for the Prague radio, but his career as a conductor was interrupted by World War II, when he was sent to Terezín and Auschwitz. At these camps Ančerl managed to survive, but lost his family. After the war he continued to conduct for the Prague radio until 1950, and then rose to fame when appointed the artistic director of the Czech Philharmonic Orchestra.

The eighteen year period he headed this orchestra are often regarded as its most accomplished years, with much international recognition. In 1968, after the Soviet-led invasion of Czechoslovakia, he decided to emigrate to Toronto. There he conducted the Toronto Symphony Orchestra until his death in 1973. Ančerl's remarkable control of orchestral dynamics, along with an exceptional grasp of both musical form and detail made him an especially effective recording artist. His broad range of recordings for the Czech Supraphon label have been carefully preserved with digital technology.

In addition to performances of Czech masters Antonín Dvořák, Bedřich Smetana, leoš Janáček, Bohuslav Martinů or Miloslav Kabeláč, Ančerl interpreted early 20th century masters Igor Stravinsky, Béla Bartók and Sergei Prokofiev. His 1968 recordings of Gustav Mahler 9th symphony is widely admired. As a conductor, Ancerl followed a recognizably Czech tradition and, along with Vaclav Talich, Karel Sejna, Václav Neumann and numerous others, he helped to create a sense of tradition and a definable sound world related to a definable sense of Czech music. Sharp rhythms, vibrant dynamics, and a strongly etched sound world were halls-marks of his conducting style. These aspects were most noticeable when he conducted his home orchestra - the Czech Philharmonic, but he also managed to get orchestras as diverse as the Toronto Symphony, the Vienna Symphony and the Royal Concertgebouw to also play with a sharp, distinctive and altogether Czech sound.

In recent years not only have his many Supraphon recordings being reissued on CD but performances with these other orchestras have also surfaced on labels such as Tahra, CBC and EMI. Labels such as Line Classics (a German company) have issued some radio recordings made during the late 1940s, when Ancerl returned to Prague. To date operas by Smetana and Dvorak have surfaced. A video of a rehearsal with the Toronto Symphony Orchestra has also been issued and it depicts the two key elements of his conducting style - a fastidious attention to detail and an infectious sense of rhythm and vibrancy. Complete discography: http://www.karel-ancerl.com/pag1.php Read more on Last.fm.

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