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František BENDA

(*22.11.1709, Benátky nad Jizerou - ✝7.3.1786, Potsdam)

Bohemian composer, conductor, distinguish representative of the Czech musical classicism

Son of Jan Jiří Benda. As a boy, he was a singer in St. Nicolas' church and Hofkapelle at Dresden. He continued with his studies on the violin (especially through studying the concerts by Vivaldi). In 1732 he was invited to play in royal orchestra in Warsaw, in 1733 he was engaged as violinist by Crown Prince Frederick of Prussia in Dresden. He participated in performances with C. Ph. E. Bach and J. E. Goldberg. He remained to his death in the service of Frederick. He was appointed Konzertmeister in the King's Kapelle in 1771. Ch. Burney described Benda as of the famous musician at the court in Berlin. He was appreciated for his playing of adagios and embellishments. In 1763 his work includes about 80 violin solos, 15 concertos, some symphonies.

Bibliography:

D. Lee: F. Benda (1709-86) a Thematic Catalgoue of His Works (New York, 1984)

F. Benda: Autobiography (1763)

D. Lee: A Musician at Court and Autobiography of F. Benda (Warren, MI, 1998)

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