LEOŠ JANÁČEK, THE MOST-PERFORMED CZECH OPERA COMPOSER IN THE WORLD, LIVED AND WORKED IN BRNO
Where else to go in search of Leoš Janáček than Brno, the city where this world-renowned composer spent most of his life and where the vast majority of his work was performed for the first time. Brno is the seat of the Leoš Janáček Archive of the Moravian Museum, which was entered into the UNESCO Memory of the World International Register, as well as the Leoš Janáček Memorial in the former Janáček House.
With financial support from the city of Brno, TIC BRNO has put together a web portal where you can find a wide range of information about the composer and his work but also about the In the Footsteps of Leoš Janáček trail and Brno institutions whose history and current activities are connected with Janáček's legacy. You can get to know Leoš Janáček in three-minute animated videos, try out an online musical memory game and choose from a range of Janáček-themed souvenirs. On the website you will also find the latest news about Janáček-related events, especially the Janáček Brno festival.
More information about Brno, guided tours, cultural and gastronomic tips and practical advice for visitors can be found on the tourist portal gotobrno.cz. An overview of music events in Brno can be found on the portal Brno Music Friendly City.
DID YOU KNOW?
- Leoš Janáček is the most frequently performed Czech opera composer in the world, and according to the Operabase statistics, belongs to 20 most frequently performed opera composer at all.
- From 2004 until the end of 2020 alone there were more than 3300 performances of Janáček's operas in both European theatres as well as in New York, Tokyo, San Francisco, Rio de Janeiro and New Zealand.
- The majority of Janáček's operas performed abroad are in Czech, and when studying for their roles, singers are helped by a Czech language advisor.
- Janáček was one of the first composers to write an opera to a non-versified text - his Jenůfa (1904).
- The Makropulos Affair (1926) is the first opera to feature a telephone call.
- Sinfonietta is Janáček's most frequently performed orchestral work around the world.
A sample of the promotional brochure published by TIC BRNO in 2018. Illustration © Vendula Chalánková
Even as a young boy, the genius of Leoš Janáčekcharmed and excited me; I immediately fell in love with him. This is quite surprising when you consider that even though his music is very rousing, it's also very complex. Today I'm strongly aware of the fact that I found such a natural path towards him because he was a local artistic figure in my home town of Brno, and was obviously a major feature in concert and opera programmes as well as in the general cultural consciousness. We can never lose this "obviously" in Brno! To do so would be to lose our relationship to one of the deepest wells of artistic expression that has ever existed.
Jakub Hrůša, conductor