Vitezslava Kapralova (1915-1940)

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01The Young Artist20151012
01The Young Artist20151012
01The Young Artist20151012

Donald Macleod on Kapralova's childhood in Brno, where she grew up in a musical family.

01The Young Artist20151012
01The Young Artist20151012
01The Young Artist20151012

This week, for the first time on Composer of the Week, Donald Macleod explores the life of one of the 20th century's trailblazers, the Czech composer Vítezslava Kaprálová.

Born in 1915 into a musical family, Vítezslava Kaprálová was one of the brightest young composers to emerge in Czech music inbetween the two world wars. You may have come across her name in association with her mentor, the composer Bohuslav Martinu, with whom she later became romantically involved, but irrespective of that link Kaprálová achieved considerable success under her own steam, notching up a series of professional achievements that set her apart from her contemporaries. She was the first woman to graduate as a composer from the Brno Conservatory, the first woman to be given the prestigious Smetana award for composition and the first woman to conduct the Czech Philharmonic. Here in the UK Kaprálová joined the ranks of British composer Dame Ethel Smyth and Nadia Boulanger in conducting the BBC Symphony Orchestra before the Second World War.

There's litte doubt that the turbulence of the times in which Kaprálová lived created obstacles in her creative path. She became an exile after the Munich Pact of 1938 and the subsequent onset of the Second World War. Furthermore, like the talented French composer Lili Boulanger some twenty years earlier, Kaprálová's life was cut short; she died in France in 1940, at the age of just twenty-five. Nonetheless, she was able to compose quickly and naturally, so a sizeable legacy exists of some fifty works, spread across vocal, chamber, solo piano and orchestral forms. Donald Macleod explores Vítezslava Kaprálová's extraordinary story with Karla Hartl, the founder of The Kaprálová Society.

Today Donald Macleod looks at Kaprálová's childhood in Brno, where she grew up in a musical family, in the shadow of Janácek's influence. She began to write music early on, with her earliest compositions, including two song sketches, here specially recorded by Radio 3 New Generation Artist, the Ukrainian soprano Olena Tokar, as well as her best known piano work, "April Preludes", and the piece with which she made an acclaimed debut in the UK, conducting the BBC Symphony Orchestra in her own "Military Sinfonietta" in 1938.

Cantabile moderato - from Five Compositions for Piano

Virginia Eskin, piano

April Preludes, Op.13

Two song sketches

Olena Tokar, soprano

Igor Gryshyn, piano

Navzdy, Op.12

Legend and Burlesque, Op.3

Stephanie Chase, violin

Military Sinfonietta, Op.11

Czech Symphony Orchestra of Brno

František Jílek, conductor.

01The Young Artist20151012

Donald Macleod on Kapralova's childhood in Brno, where she grew up in a musical family.

This week, for the first time on Composer of the Week, Donald Macleod explores the life of one of the 20th century's trailblazers, the Czech composer Vítezslava Kaprálová.

Born in 1915 into a musical family, Vítezslava Kaprálová was one of the brightest young composers to emerge in Czech music inbetween the two world wars. You may have come across her name in association with her mentor, the composer Bohuslav Martinu, with whom she later became romantically involved, but irrespective of that link Kaprálová achieved considerable success under her own steam, notching up a series of professional achievements that set her apart from her contemporaries. She was the first woman to graduate as a composer from the Brno Conservatory, the first woman to be given the prestigious Smetana award for composition and the first woman to conduct the Czech Philharmonic. Here in the UK Kaprálová joined the ranks of British composer Dame Ethel Smyth and Nadia Boulanger in conducting the BBC Symphony Orchestra before the Second World War.

There's litte doubt that the turbulence of the times in which Kaprálová lived created obstacles in her creative path. She became an exile after the Munich Pact of 1938 and the subsequent onset of the Second World War. Furthermore, like the talented French composer Lili Boulanger some twenty years earlier, Kaprálová's life was cut short; she died in France in 1940, at the age of just twenty-five. Nonetheless, she was able to compose quickly and naturally, so a sizeable legacy exists of some fifty works, spread across vocal, chamber, solo piano and orchestral forms. Donald Macleod explores Vítezslava Kaprálová's extraordinary story with Karla Hartl, the founder of The Kaprálová Society.

Today Donald Macleod looks at Kaprálová's childhood in Brno, where she grew up in a musical family, in the shadow of Janácek's influence. She began to write music early on, with her earliest compositions, including two song sketches, here specially recorded by Radio 3 New Generation Artist, the Ukrainian soprano Olena Tokar, as well as her best known piano work, "April Preludes", and the piece with which she made an acclaimed debut in the UK, conducting the BBC Symphony Orchestra in her own "Military Sinfonietta" in 1938.

Cantabile moderato - from Five Compositions for Piano

Virginia Eskin, piano

April Preludes, Op.13

Two song sketches

Olena Tokar, soprano

Igor Gryshyn, piano

Navzdy, Op.12

Legend and Burlesque, Op.3

Stephanie Chase, violin

Military Sinfonietta, Op.11

Czech Symphony Orchestra of Brno

František Jílek, conductor.

02Studies in Brno20151013

02Studies in Brno20151013

Donald Macleod explores the five years Kapralova spent studying at the Brno Conservatory.

02Studies in Brno20151013

Donald Macleod explores the five years Kapralova spent studying at the Brno Conservatory.

02Studies in Brno20151013

02Studies in Brno20151013

Vítezslava Kaprálová's studies in Brno at the academy originally founded by Leoš Janácek expand her musical horizons.

Born in 1915 into a musical family, Vítezslava Kaprálová was one of the brightest young composers to emerge in Czech music inbetween the two world wars. A link with her mentor, the composer Bohuslav Martinu, with whom she later became romantically involved, arguably has unfairly impinged on her posthumous reputation; Kaprálová achieved considerable success under her own steam, notching up a series of professional achievements that set her apart from her contemporaries. She was the first woman to graduate as a composer from the Brno Conservatory, the first woman to be given the prestigious Smetana award for composition and the first woman to conduct the Czech Philharmonic. Here in the UK, Kaprálová joined the ranks of British composer Dame Ethel Smyth and Nadia Boulanger in conducting the BBC Symphony Orchestra before the Second World War.

There's litte doubt that the turbulence of the times in which Kaprálová lived created obstacles in her creative path. She became an exile after the Munich Pact of 1938 and the subsequent onset of the Second World War. Furthermore, like the talented French composer Lili Boulanger some twenty years earlier, Kaprálová's life was cut short; she died in France in 1940, at the age of just twenty-five. Nonetheless she was able to compose quickly and naturally, so a sizeable legacy exists of some fifty works, spread across vocal, chamber, solo piano and orchestral forms. Donald Macleod explores Vítezslava Kaprálová's extraordinary story with Karla Hartl, the founder of The Kaprálová Society.

Profiting from the expansion of Czech-speaking culture, the five years Vítezslava Kaprálová spent studying at the Brno Conservatory proved to be formative to the development of her musical language. Having entered at the age of fifteen in 1930, she spent those years experimenting with impressionistic and expressionistic idioms, leading to some of her most striking compositions, including some of her most memorable songs and her most substantial work for solo piano to date. Presented by Donald Macleod with Karla Hartl, founder of The Kaprálová Society.

Tempo di menuetto - from Five Compositions for Piano

Virginia Eskin, piano

Leden

Dana Burešová, soprano

Timothy Cheek, piano

Magda Cáslavová, flute

Herold Quartet

Sonata appassionata, Op.6

Virginia Eskin, piano

Sparks from the Ashes, Op.5

Dana Burešová, soprano

Timothy Cheek, piano

Suite en miniature, Op.1

Brno Philharmonic

Jirí Pinkas, conductor.

02Studies in Brno20151013

Vítezslava Kaprálová's studies in Brno at the academy originally founded by Leoš Janácek expand her musical horizons.

Born in 1915 into a musical family, Vítezslava Kaprálová was one of the brightest young composers to emerge in Czech music inbetween the two world wars. A link with her mentor, the composer Bohuslav Martinu, with whom she later became romantically involved, arguably has unfairly impinged on her posthumous reputation; Kaprálová achieved considerable success under her own steam, notching up a series of professional achievements that set her apart from her contemporaries. She was the first woman to graduate as a composer from the Brno Conservatory, the first woman to be given the prestigious Smetana award for composition and the first woman to conduct the Czech Philharmonic. Here in the UK, Kaprálová joined the ranks of British composer Dame Ethel Smyth and Nadia Boulanger in conducting the BBC Symphony Orchestra before the Second World War.

There's litte doubt that the turbulence of the times in which Kaprálová lived created obstacles in her creative path. She became an exile after the Munich Pact of 1938 and the subsequent onset of the Second World War. Furthermore, like the talented French composer Lili Boulanger some twenty years earlier, Kaprálová's life was cut short; she died in France in 1940, at the age of just twenty-five. Nonetheless she was able to compose quickly and naturally, so a sizeable legacy exists of some fifty works, spread across vocal, chamber, solo piano and orchestral forms. Donald Macleod explores Vítezslava Kaprálová's extraordinary story with Karla Hartl, the founder of The Kaprálová Society.

Profiting from the expansion of Czech-speaking culture, the five years Vítezslava Kaprálová spent studying at the Brno Conservatory proved to be formative to the development of her musical language. Having entered at the age of fifteen in 1930, she spent those years experimenting with impressionistic and expressionistic idioms, leading to some of her most striking compositions, including some of her most memorable songs and her most substantial work for solo piano to date. Presented by Donald Macleod with Karla Hartl, founder of The Kaprálová Society.

Tempo di menuetto - from Five Compositions for Piano

Virginia Eskin, piano

Leden

Dana Burešová, soprano

Timothy Cheek, piano

Magda Cáslavová, flute

Herold Quartet

Sonata appassionata, Op.6

Virginia Eskin, piano

Sparks from the Ashes, Op.5

Dana Burešová, soprano

Timothy Cheek, piano

Suite en miniature, Op.1

Brno Philharmonic

Jirí Pinkas, conductor.

02Studies in Brno20151013

02Studies in Brno20151013

Donald Macleod explores the five years Kapralova spent studying at the Brno Conservatory.

02Studies in Brno20151013

Donald Macleod explores the five years Kapralova spent studying at the Brno Conservatory.

02Studies in Brno20151013

02Studies in Brno20151013

Vítezslava Kaprálová's studies in Brno at the academy originally founded by Leoš Janácek expand her musical horizons.

Born in 1915 into a musical family, Vítezslava Kaprálová was one of the brightest young composers to emerge in Czech music inbetween the two world wars. A link with her mentor, the composer Bohuslav Martinu, with whom she later became romantically involved, arguably has unfairly impinged on her posthumous reputation; Kaprálová achieved considerable success under her own steam, notching up a series of professional achievements that set her apart from her contemporaries. She was the first woman to graduate as a composer from the Brno Conservatory, the first woman to be given the prestigious Smetana award for composition and the first woman to conduct the Czech Philharmonic. Here in the UK, Kaprálová joined the ranks of British composer Dame Ethel Smyth and Nadia Boulanger in conducting the BBC Symphony Orchestra before the Second World War.

There's litte doubt that the turbulence of the times in which Kaprálová lived created obstacles in her creative path. She became an exile after the Munich Pact of 1938 and the subsequent onset of the Second World War. Furthermore, like the talented French composer Lili Boulanger some twenty years earlier, Kaprálová's life was cut short; she died in France in 1940, at the age of just twenty-five. Nonetheless she was able to compose quickly and naturally, so a sizeable legacy exists of some fifty works, spread across vocal, chamber, solo piano and orchestral forms. Donald Macleod explores Vítezslava Kaprálová's extraordinary story with Karla Hartl, the founder of The Kaprálová Society.

Profiting from the expansion of Czech-speaking culture, the five years Vítezslava Kaprálová spent studying at the Brno Conservatory proved to be formative to the development of her musical language. Having entered at the age of fifteen in 1930, she spent those years experimenting with impressionistic and expressionistic idioms, leading to some of her most striking compositions, including some of her most memorable songs and her most substantial work for solo piano to date. Presented by Donald Macleod with Karla Hartl, founder of The Kaprálová Society.

Tempo di menuetto - from Five Compositions for Piano

Virginia Eskin, piano

Leden

Dana Burešová, soprano

Timothy Cheek, piano

Magda Cáslavová, flute

Herold Quartet

Sonata appassionata, Op.6

Virginia Eskin, piano

Sparks from the Ashes, Op.5

Dana Burešová, soprano

Timothy Cheek, piano

Suite en miniature, Op.1

Brno Philharmonic

Jirí Pinkas, conductor.

02Studies in Brno20151013

Vítezslava Kaprálová's studies in Brno at the academy originally founded by Leoš Janácek expand her musical horizons.

Born in 1915 into a musical family, Vítezslava Kaprálová was one of the brightest young composers to emerge in Czech music inbetween the two world wars. A link with her mentor, the composer Bohuslav Martinu, with whom she later became romantically involved, arguably has unfairly impinged on her posthumous reputation; Kaprálová achieved considerable success under her own steam, notching up a series of professional achievements that set her apart from her contemporaries. She was the first woman to graduate as a composer from the Brno Conservatory, the first woman to be given the prestigious Smetana award for composition and the first woman to conduct the Czech Philharmonic. Here in the UK, Kaprálová joined the ranks of British composer Dame Ethel Smyth and Nadia Boulanger in conducting the BBC Symphony Orchestra before the Second World War.

There's litte doubt that the turbulence of the times in which Kaprálová lived created obstacles in her creative path. She became an exile after the Munich Pact of 1938 and the subsequent onset of the Second World War. Furthermore, like the talented French composer Lili Boulanger some twenty years earlier, Kaprálová's life was cut short; she died in France in 1940, at the age of just twenty-five. Nonetheless she was able to compose quickly and naturally, so a sizeable legacy exists of some fifty works, spread across vocal, chamber, solo piano and orchestral forms. Donald Macleod explores Vítezslava Kaprálová's extraordinary story with Karla Hartl, the founder of The Kaprálová Society.

Profiting from the expansion of Czech-speaking culture, the five years Vítezslava Kaprálová spent studying at the Brno Conservatory proved to be formative to the development of her musical language. Having entered at the age of fifteen in 1930, she spent those years experimenting with impressionistic and expressionistic idioms, leading to some of her most striking compositions, including some of her most memorable songs and her most substantial work for solo piano to date. Presented by Donald Macleod with Karla Hartl, founder of The Kaprálová Society.

Tempo di menuetto - from Five Compositions for Piano

Virginia Eskin, piano

Leden

Dana Burešová, soprano

Timothy Cheek, piano

Magda Cáslavová, flute

Herold Quartet

Sonata appassionata, Op.6

Virginia Eskin, piano

Sparks from the Ashes, Op.5

Dana Burešová, soprano

Timothy Cheek, piano

Suite en miniature, Op.1

Brno Philharmonic

Jirí Pinkas, conductor.

02Studies in Brno20151013

02Studies in Brno20151013

Donald Macleod explores the five years Kapralova spent studying at the Brno Conservatory.

02Studies in Brno20151013

Donald Macleod explores the five years Kapralova spent studying at the Brno Conservatory.

02Studies in Brno20151013

02Studies in Brno20151013

Vítezslava Kaprálová's studies in Brno at the academy originally founded by Leoš Janácek expand her musical horizons.

Born in 1915 into a musical family, Vítezslava Kaprálová was one of the brightest young composers to emerge in Czech music inbetween the two world wars. A link with her mentor, the composer Bohuslav Martinu, with whom she later became romantically involved, arguably has unfairly impinged on her posthumous reputation; Kaprálová achieved considerable success under her own steam, notching up a series of professional achievements that set her apart from her contemporaries. She was the first woman to graduate as a composer from the Brno Conservatory, the first woman to be given the prestigious Smetana award for composition and the first woman to conduct the Czech Philharmonic. Here in the UK, Kaprálová joined the ranks of British composer Dame Ethel Smyth and Nadia Boulanger in conducting the BBC Symphony Orchestra before the Second World War.

There's litte doubt that the turbulence of the times in which Kaprálová lived created obstacles in her creative path. She became an exile after the Munich Pact of 1938 and the subsequent onset of the Second World War. Furthermore, like the talented French composer Lili Boulanger some twenty years earlier, Kaprálová's life was cut short; she died in France in 1940, at the age of just twenty-five. Nonetheless she was able to compose quickly and naturally, so a sizeable legacy exists of some fifty works, spread across vocal, chamber, solo piano and orchestral forms. Donald Macleod explores Vítezslava Kaprálová's extraordinary story with Karla Hartl, the founder of The Kaprálová Society.

Profiting from the expansion of Czech-speaking culture, the five years Vítezslava Kaprálová spent studying at the Brno Conservatory proved to be formative to the development of her musical language. Having entered at the age of fifteen in 1930, she spent those years experimenting with impressionistic and expressionistic idioms, leading to some of her most striking compositions, including some of her most memorable songs and her most substantial work for solo piano to date. Presented by Donald Macleod with Karla Hartl, founder of The Kaprálová Society.

Tempo di menuetto - from Five Compositions for Piano

Virginia Eskin, piano

Leden

Dana Burešová, soprano

Timothy Cheek, piano

Magda Cáslavová, flute

Herold Quartet

Sonata appassionata, Op.6

Virginia Eskin, piano

Sparks from the Ashes, Op.5

Dana Burešová, soprano

Timothy Cheek, piano

Suite en miniature, Op.1

Brno Philharmonic

Jirí Pinkas, conductor.

02Studies in Brno20151013

Vítezslava Kaprálová's studies in Brno at the academy originally founded by Leoš Janácek expand her musical horizons.

Born in 1915 into a musical family, Vítezslava Kaprálová was one of the brightest young composers to emerge in Czech music inbetween the two world wars. A link with her mentor, the composer Bohuslav Martinu, with whom she later became romantically involved, arguably has unfairly impinged on her posthumous reputation; Kaprálová achieved considerable success under her own steam, notching up a series of professional achievements that set her apart from her contemporaries. She was the first woman to graduate as a composer from the Brno Conservatory, the first woman to be given the prestigious Smetana award for composition and the first woman to conduct the Czech Philharmonic. Here in the UK, Kaprálová joined the ranks of British composer Dame Ethel Smyth and Nadia Boulanger in conducting the BBC Symphony Orchestra before the Second World War.

There's litte doubt that the turbulence of the times in which Kaprálová lived created obstacles in her creative path. She became an exile after the Munich Pact of 1938 and the subsequent onset of the Second World War. Furthermore, like the talented French composer Lili Boulanger some twenty years earlier, Kaprálová's life was cut short; she died in France in 1940, at the age of just twenty-five. Nonetheless she was able to compose quickly and naturally, so a sizeable legacy exists of some fifty works, spread across vocal, chamber, solo piano and orchestral forms. Donald Macleod explores Vítezslava Kaprálová's extraordinary story with Karla Hartl, the founder of The Kaprálová Society.

Profiting from the expansion of Czech-speaking culture, the five years Vítezslava Kaprálová spent studying at the Brno Conservatory proved to be formative to the development of her musical language. Having entered at the age of fifteen in 1930, she spent those years experimenting with impressionistic and expressionistic idioms, leading to some of her most striking compositions, including some of her most memorable songs and her most substantial work for solo piano to date. Presented by Donald Macleod with Karla Hartl, founder of The Kaprálová Society.

Tempo di menuetto - from Five Compositions for Piano

Virginia Eskin, piano

Leden

Dana Burešová, soprano

Timothy Cheek, piano

Magda Cáslavová, flute

Herold Quartet

Sonata appassionata, Op.6

Virginia Eskin, piano

Sparks from the Ashes, Op.5

Dana Burešová, soprano

Timothy Cheek, piano

Suite en miniature, Op.1

Brno Philharmonic

Jirí Pinkas, conductor.

03Prague20151014

03Prague20151014

Donald Macleod details Kapralova's move to Prague.

03Prague20151014

Donald Macleod details Kapralova's move to Prague.

03Prague20151014

03Prague20151014

Vítezslava Kaprálová, moves to Prague, a vibrant city buzzing with ideas, where the twenty-year-old brilliant young composition student expands her musical horizons with some astonishing results.

Born in 1915 into a musical family, Vítezslava Kaprálová was one of the brightest young composers to emerge in Czech music inbetween the two world wars. A link with her mentor, the composer Bohuslav Martinu, with whom she later became romantically involved, arguably has unfairly impinged on her posthumous reputation; Kaprálová achieved considerable success under her own steam, notching up a series of professional achievements that set her apart from her contemporaries. She was the first woman to graduate as a composer from the Brno Conservatory, the first woman to be given the prestigious Smetana award for composition and the first woman to conduct the Czech Philharmonic. Here in the UK Kaprálová joined the ranks of British composer Dame Ethel Smyth and Nadia Boulanger in conducting the BBC Symphony Orchestra before the Second World War.

There's litte doubt that the turbulence of the times in which Kaprálová lived created obstacles in her creative path. She became an exile after the Munich Pact of 1938 and the subsequent onset of the Second World War. Furthermore, like the talented French composer Lili Boulanger some twenty years earlier, Kaprálová's life was cut short; she died in France in 1940, at the age of just twenty-five. Nonetheless she was able to compose quickly and naturally, so a sizeable legacy exists of some fifty works, spread across vocal, chamber, solo piano and orchestral forms. Donald Macleod explores Vítezslava Kaprálová's extraordinary story with Karla Hartl, the founder of The Kaprálová Society.

Vítezslava Kaprálová arrived in Prague with a considerable reputation; she had graduated from Brno Conservatory as a prize-winning student, with a piano concerto that she conducted herself. Now in Prague she furthered her studies and also made good use of the broader cultural activities available in that vibrant city. With Donald Macleod and Karla Hartl, the founder of The Kaprálová Society.

Grotesque Passacaglia

Tomás Víšek, piano

Apple from the Lap, Op.10

Dana Burešová, soprano

Timothy Cheek, piano

String Quartet, Op.8 (1st movement, Con brio)

Škampa Quartet

Piano Concerto in D Minor, Op.7

Alice Rajnohová, piano

Bohuslav Martinu Philharmonic Orchestra

Tomáš Hanus, conductor

Vteriny (excerpt), Op.18

Olena Tokar, soprano

Igor Gryshyn, piano.

03Prague20151014

Vítezslava Kaprálová, moves to Prague, a vibrant city buzzing with ideas, where the twenty-year-old brilliant young composition student expands her musical horizons with some astonishing results.

Born in 1915 into a musical family, Vítezslava Kaprálová was one of the brightest young composers to emerge in Czech music inbetween the two world wars. A link with her mentor, the composer Bohuslav Martinu, with whom she later became romantically involved, arguably has unfairly impinged on her posthumous reputation; Kaprálová achieved considerable success under her own steam, notching up a series of professional achievements that set her apart from her contemporaries. She was the first woman to graduate as a composer from the Brno Conservatory, the first woman to be given the prestigious Smetana award for composition and the first woman to conduct the Czech Philharmonic. Here in the UK Kaprálová joined the ranks of British composer Dame Ethel Smyth and Nadia Boulanger in conducting the BBC Symphony Orchestra before the Second World War.

There's litte doubt that the turbulence of the times in which Kaprálová lived created obstacles in her creative path. She became an exile after the Munich Pact of 1938 and the subsequent onset of the Second World War. Furthermore, like the talented French composer Lili Boulanger some twenty years earlier, Kaprálová's life was cut short; she died in France in 1940, at the age of just twenty-five. Nonetheless she was able to compose quickly and naturally, so a sizeable legacy exists of some fifty works, spread across vocal, chamber, solo piano and orchestral forms. Donald Macleod explores Vítezslava Kaprálová's extraordinary story with Karla Hartl, the founder of The Kaprálová Society.

Vítezslava Kaprálová arrived in Prague with a considerable reputation; she had graduated from Brno Conservatory as a prize-winning student, with a piano concerto that she conducted herself. Now in Prague she furthered her studies and also made good use of the broader cultural activities available in that vibrant city. With Donald Macleod and Karla Hartl, the founder of The Kaprálová Society.

Grotesque Passacaglia

Tomás Víšek, piano

Apple from the Lap, Op.10

Dana Burešová, soprano

Timothy Cheek, piano

String Quartet, Op.8 (1st movement, Con brio)

Škampa Quartet

Piano Concerto in D Minor, Op.7

Alice Rajnohová, piano

Bohuslav Martinu Philharmonic Orchestra

Tomáš Hanus, conductor

Vteriny (excerpt), Op.18

Olena Tokar, soprano

Igor Gryshyn, piano.

03Prague20151014

03Prague20151014

Donald Macleod details Kapralova's move to Prague.

03Prague20151014

Donald Macleod details Kapralova's move to Prague.

03Prague20151014

03Prague20151014

Vítezslava Kaprálová, moves to Prague, a vibrant city buzzing with ideas, where the twenty-year-old brilliant young composition student expands her musical horizons with some astonishing results.

Born in 1915 into a musical family, Vítezslava Kaprálová was one of the brightest young composers to emerge in Czech music inbetween the two world wars. A link with her mentor, the composer Bohuslav Martinu, with whom she later became romantically involved, arguably has unfairly impinged on her posthumous reputation; Kaprálová achieved considerable success under her own steam, notching up a series of professional achievements that set her apart from her contemporaries. She was the first woman to graduate as a composer from the Brno Conservatory, the first woman to be given the prestigious Smetana award for composition and the first woman to conduct the Czech Philharmonic. Here in the UK Kaprálová joined the ranks of British composer Dame Ethel Smyth and Nadia Boulanger in conducting the BBC Symphony Orchestra before the Second World War.

There's litte doubt that the turbulence of the times in which Kaprálová lived created obstacles in her creative path. She became an exile after the Munich Pact of 1938 and the subsequent onset of the Second World War. Furthermore, like the talented French composer Lili Boulanger some twenty years earlier, Kaprálová's life was cut short; she died in France in 1940, at the age of just twenty-five. Nonetheless she was able to compose quickly and naturally, so a sizeable legacy exists of some fifty works, spread across vocal, chamber, solo piano and orchestral forms. Donald Macleod explores Vítezslava Kaprálová's extraordinary story with Karla Hartl, the founder of The Kaprálová Society.

Vítezslava Kaprálová arrived in Prague with a considerable reputation; she had graduated from Brno Conservatory as a prize-winning student, with a piano concerto that she conducted herself. Now in Prague she furthered her studies and also made good use of the broader cultural activities available in that vibrant city. With Donald Macleod and Karla Hartl, the founder of The Kaprálová Society.

Grotesque Passacaglia

Tomás Víšek, piano

Apple from the Lap, Op.10

Dana Burešová, soprano

Timothy Cheek, piano

String Quartet, Op.8 (1st movement, Con brio)

Škampa Quartet

Piano Concerto in D Minor, Op.7

Alice Rajnohová, piano

Bohuslav Martinu Philharmonic Orchestra

Tomáš Hanus, conductor

Vteriny (excerpt), Op.18

Olena Tokar, soprano

Igor Gryshyn, piano.

03Prague20151014

Vítezslava Kaprálová, moves to Prague, a vibrant city buzzing with ideas, where the twenty-year-old brilliant young composition student expands her musical horizons with some astonishing results.

Born in 1915 into a musical family, Vítezslava Kaprálová was one of the brightest young composers to emerge in Czech music inbetween the two world wars. A link with her mentor, the composer Bohuslav Martinu, with whom she later became romantically involved, arguably has unfairly impinged on her posthumous reputation; Kaprálová achieved considerable success under her own steam, notching up a series of professional achievements that set her apart from her contemporaries. She was the first woman to graduate as a composer from the Brno Conservatory, the first woman to be given the prestigious Smetana award for composition and the first woman to conduct the Czech Philharmonic. Here in the UK Kaprálová joined the ranks of British composer Dame Ethel Smyth and Nadia Boulanger in conducting the BBC Symphony Orchestra before the Second World War.

There's litte doubt that the turbulence of the times in which Kaprálová lived created obstacles in her creative path. She became an exile after the Munich Pact of 1938 and the subsequent onset of the Second World War. Furthermore, like the talented French composer Lili Boulanger some twenty years earlier, Kaprálová's life was cut short; she died in France in 1940, at the age of just twenty-five. Nonetheless she was able to compose quickly and naturally, so a sizeable legacy exists of some fifty works, spread across vocal, chamber, solo piano and orchestral forms. Donald Macleod explores Vítezslava Kaprálová's extraordinary story with Karla Hartl, the founder of The Kaprálová Society.

Vítezslava Kaprálová arrived in Prague with a considerable reputation; she had graduated from Brno Conservatory as a prize-winning student, with a piano concerto that she conducted herself. Now in Prague she furthered her studies and also made good use of the broader cultural activities available in that vibrant city. With Donald Macleod and Karla Hartl, the founder of The Kaprálová Society.

Grotesque Passacaglia

Tomás Víšek, piano

Apple from the Lap, Op.10

Dana Burešová, soprano

Timothy Cheek, piano

String Quartet, Op.8 (1st movement, Con brio)

Škampa Quartet

Piano Concerto in D Minor, Op.7

Alice Rajnohová, piano

Bohuslav Martinu Philharmonic Orchestra

Tomáš Hanus, conductor

Vteriny (excerpt), Op.18

Olena Tokar, soprano

Igor Gryshyn, piano.

03Prague20151014

03Prague20151014

Donald Macleod details Kapralova's move to Prague.

03Prague20151014

Donald Macleod details Kapralova's move to Prague.

03Prague20151014

03Prague20151014

Vítezslava Kaprálová, moves to Prague, a vibrant city buzzing with ideas, where the twenty-year-old brilliant young composition student expands her musical horizons with some astonishing results.

Born in 1915 into a musical family, Vítezslava Kaprálová was one of the brightest young composers to emerge in Czech music inbetween the two world wars. A link with her mentor, the composer Bohuslav Martinu, with whom she later became romantically involved, arguably has unfairly impinged on her posthumous reputation; Kaprálová achieved considerable success under her own steam, notching up a series of professional achievements that set her apart from her contemporaries. She was the first woman to graduate as a composer from the Brno Conservatory, the first woman to be given the prestigious Smetana award for composition and the first woman to conduct the Czech Philharmonic. Here in the UK Kaprálová joined the ranks of British composer Dame Ethel Smyth and Nadia Boulanger in conducting the BBC Symphony Orchestra before the Second World War.

There's litte doubt that the turbulence of the times in which Kaprálová lived created obstacles in her creative path. She became an exile after the Munich Pact of 1938 and the subsequent onset of the Second World War. Furthermore, like the talented French composer Lili Boulanger some twenty years earlier, Kaprálová's life was cut short; she died in France in 1940, at the age of just twenty-five. Nonetheless she was able to compose quickly and naturally, so a sizeable legacy exists of some fifty works, spread across vocal, chamber, solo piano and orchestral forms. Donald Macleod explores Vítezslava Kaprálová's extraordinary story with Karla Hartl, the founder of The Kaprálová Society.

Vítezslava Kaprálová arrived in Prague with a considerable reputation; she had graduated from Brno Conservatory as a prize-winning student, with a piano concerto that she conducted herself. Now in Prague she furthered her studies and also made good use of the broader cultural activities available in that vibrant city. With Donald Macleod and Karla Hartl, the founder of The Kaprálová Society.

Grotesque Passacaglia

Tomás Víšek, piano

Apple from the Lap, Op.10

Dana Burešová, soprano

Timothy Cheek, piano

String Quartet, Op.8 (1st movement, Con brio)

Škampa Quartet

Piano Concerto in D Minor, Op.7

Alice Rajnohová, piano

Bohuslav Martinu Philharmonic Orchestra

Tomáš Hanus, conductor

Vteriny (excerpt), Op.18

Olena Tokar, soprano

Igor Gryshyn, piano.

03Prague20151014

Vítezslava Kaprálová, moves to Prague, a vibrant city buzzing with ideas, where the twenty-year-old brilliant young composition student expands her musical horizons with some astonishing results.

Born in 1915 into a musical family, Vítezslava Kaprálová was one of the brightest young composers to emerge in Czech music inbetween the two world wars. A link with her mentor, the composer Bohuslav Martinu, with whom she later became romantically involved, arguably has unfairly impinged on her posthumous reputation; Kaprálová achieved considerable success under her own steam, notching up a series of professional achievements that set her apart from her contemporaries. She was the first woman to graduate as a composer from the Brno Conservatory, the first woman to be given the prestigious Smetana award for composition and the first woman to conduct the Czech Philharmonic. Here in the UK Kaprálová joined the ranks of British composer Dame Ethel Smyth and Nadia Boulanger in conducting the BBC Symphony Orchestra before the Second World War.

There's litte doubt that the turbulence of the times in which Kaprálová lived created obstacles in her creative path. She became an exile after the Munich Pact of 1938 and the subsequent onset of the Second World War. Furthermore, like the talented French composer Lili Boulanger some twenty years earlier, Kaprálová's life was cut short; she died in France in 1940, at the age of just twenty-five. Nonetheless she was able to compose quickly and naturally, so a sizeable legacy exists of some fifty works, spread across vocal, chamber, solo piano and orchestral forms. Donald Macleod explores Vítezslava Kaprálová's extraordinary story with Karla Hartl, the founder of The Kaprálová Society.

Vítezslava Kaprálová arrived in Prague with a considerable reputation; she had graduated from Brno Conservatory as a prize-winning student, with a piano concerto that she conducted herself. Now in Prague she furthered her studies and also made good use of the broader cultural activities available in that vibrant city. With Donald Macleod and Karla Hartl, the founder of The Kaprálová Society.

Grotesque Passacaglia

Tomás Víšek, piano

Apple from the Lap, Op.10

Dana Burešová, soprano

Timothy Cheek, piano

String Quartet, Op.8 (1st movement, Con brio)

Škampa Quartet

Piano Concerto in D Minor, Op.7

Alice Rajnohová, piano

Bohuslav Martinu Philharmonic Orchestra

Tomáš Hanus, conductor

Vteriny (excerpt), Op.18

Olena Tokar, soprano

Igor Gryshyn, piano.

04Paris20151015

04Paris20151015

Donald Macleod details Kapralova's move to Paris to study with Charles Munch.

04Paris20151015

Donald Macleod details Kapralova's move to Paris to study with Charles Munch.

04Paris20151015

04Paris20151015

Vítezslava Kaprálová wins an award to study in Paris with Charles Munch, and is mentored by fellow Czech Bohuslav Martinu.

Born in 1915 into a musical family, Vítezslava Kaprálová was one of the brightest young composers to emerge in Czech music inbetween the two world wars. You may have come across her name in association with her mentor, the composer Bohuslav Martinu, with whom she later became romantically involved, but irrespective of that link Kaprálová achieved considerable success under her own steam, notching up a series of professional achievements that set her apart from her contemporaries. She was the first woman to graduate as a composer from the Brno Conservatory, the first woman to be given the prestigious Smetana award for composition and the first woman to conduct the Czech Philharmonic. Here in the UK Kaprálová joined the ranks of British composer Dame Ethel Smyth and Nadia Boulanger in conducting the BBC Symphony Orchestra before the Second World War.

There's litte doubt that the turbulence of the times in which Kaprálová lived created obstacles in her creative path. She became an exile after the Munich Agreement of 1938 and the subsequent onset of the Second World War. Furthermore, like the talented French composer, Lili Boulanger some twenty years earlier, Kaprálová's life was cut short; she died in France in 1940, at the age of just twenty-five. Nonetheless she was able to compose quickly and naturally, so a sizeable legacy exists of some fifty works, spread across vocal, chamber, solo piano and orchestral forms. Donald Macleod explores Vítezslava Kaprálová's extraordinary story with Karla Hartl, the founder of The Kaprálová Society.

The opportunity to study in Paris marked a personal turning point in the life of the young Czech composer Vítezslava Kaprálová. She arrived there in 1938, as the terms of the Munich Accord, which gave part of Czechoslovakia to Germany, were being thrashed out. A year later the Germans invaded her homeland. For Kaprálová this had a profound result. She would remain in exile for the rest of her life. Her life became increasingly complicated. Money was hard to come by and her relationship with her composition mentor, Bohuslav Martinu, deepened emotionally. Presented by Donald Macleod, with Karla Hartl, founder of The Kaprálová Society.

Smutny vecer (Sad Evening)

Olena Tokar, soprano

Igor Gryshyn, piano

Waving Farewell

Czech Symphony Orchestra of Brno

Vilém Pribl, tenor

Frantísek Jílek, conductor

String Quartet, Op.8 (3rd movement: Allegro con variazioni)

Škampa Quartet

Martinu: Koleda milostná (Love Carol) for voice & piano

Kaprálová: Koleda milostná (Love Carol) for voice & piano

Lenka Škornicková, soprano

Jítka Drobílková, piano

Variations sur le carillon

Virginia Eskin, piano

Suita rustica

Brno Philharmonic

Jirí Pinkas, conductor.

04Paris20151015

Vítezslava Kaprálová wins an award to study in Paris with Charles Munch, and is mentored by fellow Czech Bohuslav Martinu.

Born in 1915 into a musical family, Vítezslava Kaprálová was one of the brightest young composers to emerge in Czech music inbetween the two world wars. You may have come across her name in association with her mentor, the composer Bohuslav Martinu, with whom she later became romantically involved, but irrespective of that link Kaprálová achieved considerable success under her own steam, notching up a series of professional achievements that set her apart from her contemporaries. She was the first woman to graduate as a composer from the Brno Conservatory, the first woman to be given the prestigious Smetana award for composition and the first woman to conduct the Czech Philharmonic. Here in the UK Kaprálová joined the ranks of British composer Dame Ethel Smyth and Nadia Boulanger in conducting the BBC Symphony Orchestra before the Second World War.

There's litte doubt that the turbulence of the times in which Kaprálová lived created obstacles in her creative path. She became an exile after the Munich Agreement of 1938 and the subsequent onset of the Second World War. Furthermore, like the talented French composer, Lili Boulanger some twenty years earlier, Kaprálová's life was cut short; she died in France in 1940, at the age of just twenty-five. Nonetheless she was able to compose quickly and naturally, so a sizeable legacy exists of some fifty works, spread across vocal, chamber, solo piano and orchestral forms. Donald Macleod explores Vítezslava Kaprálová's extraordinary story with Karla Hartl, the founder of The Kaprálová Society.

The opportunity to study in Paris marked a personal turning point in the life of the young Czech composer Vítezslava Kaprálová. She arrived there in 1938, as the terms of the Munich Accord, which gave part of Czechoslovakia to Germany, were being thrashed out. A year later the Germans invaded her homeland. For Kaprálová this had a profound result. She would remain in exile for the rest of her life. Her life became increasingly complicated. Money was hard to come by and her relationship with her composition mentor, Bohuslav Martinu, deepened emotionally. Presented by Donald Macleod, with Karla Hartl, founder of The Kaprálová Society.

Smutny vecer (Sad Evening)

Olena Tokar, soprano

Igor Gryshyn, piano

Waving Farewell

Czech Symphony Orchestra of Brno

Vilém Pribl, tenor

Frantísek Jílek, conductor

String Quartet, Op.8 (3rd movement: Allegro con variazioni)

Škampa Quartet

Martinu: Koleda milostná (Love Carol) for voice & piano

Kaprálová: Koleda milostná (Love Carol) for voice & piano

Lenka Škornicková, soprano

Jítka Drobílková, piano

Variations sur le carillon

Virginia Eskin, piano

Suita rustica

Brno Philharmonic

Jirí Pinkas, conductor.

04Paris20151015

04Paris20151015

Donald Macleod details Kapralova's move to Paris to study with Charles Munch.

04Paris20151015

Donald Macleod details Kapralova's move to Paris to study with Charles Munch.

04Paris20151015

04Paris20151015

Vítezslava Kaprálová wins an award to study in Paris with Charles Munch, and is mentored by fellow Czech Bohuslav Martinu.

Born in 1915 into a musical family, Vítezslava Kaprálová was one of the brightest young composers to emerge in Czech music inbetween the two world wars. You may have come across her name in association with her mentor, the composer Bohuslav Martinu, with whom she later became romantically involved, but irrespective of that link Kaprálová achieved considerable success under her own steam, notching up a series of professional achievements that set her apart from her contemporaries. She was the first woman to graduate as a composer from the Brno Conservatory, the first woman to be given the prestigious Smetana award for composition and the first woman to conduct the Czech Philharmonic. Here in the UK Kaprálová joined the ranks of British composer Dame Ethel Smyth and Nadia Boulanger in conducting the BBC Symphony Orchestra before the Second World War.

There's litte doubt that the turbulence of the times in which Kaprálová lived created obstacles in her creative path. She became an exile after the Munich Agreement of 1938 and the subsequent onset of the Second World War. Furthermore, like the talented French composer, Lili Boulanger some twenty years earlier, Kaprálová's life was cut short; she died in France in 1940, at the age of just twenty-five. Nonetheless she was able to compose quickly and naturally, so a sizeable legacy exists of some fifty works, spread across vocal, chamber, solo piano and orchestral forms. Donald Macleod explores Vítezslava Kaprálová's extraordinary story with Karla Hartl, the founder of The Kaprálová Society.

The opportunity to study in Paris marked a personal turning point in the life of the young Czech composer Vítezslava Kaprálová. She arrived there in 1938, as the terms of the Munich Accord, which gave part of Czechoslovakia to Germany, were being thrashed out. A year later the Germans invaded her homeland. For Kaprálová this had a profound result. She would remain in exile for the rest of her life. Her life became increasingly complicated. Money was hard to come by and her relationship with her composition mentor, Bohuslav Martinu, deepened emotionally. Presented by Donald Macleod, with Karla Hartl, founder of The Kaprálová Society.

Smutny vecer (Sad Evening)

Olena Tokar, soprano

Igor Gryshyn, piano

Waving Farewell

Czech Symphony Orchestra of Brno

Vilém Pribl, tenor

Frantísek Jílek, conductor

String Quartet, Op.8 (3rd movement: Allegro con variazioni)

Škampa Quartet

Martinu: Koleda milostná (Love Carol) for voice & piano

Kaprálová: Koleda milostná (Love Carol) for voice & piano

Lenka Škornicková, soprano

Jítka Drobílková, piano

Variations sur le carillon

Virginia Eskin, piano

Suita rustica

Brno Philharmonic

Jirí Pinkas, conductor.

04Paris20151015

Vítezslava Kaprálová wins an award to study in Paris with Charles Munch, and is mentored by fellow Czech Bohuslav Martinu.

Born in 1915 into a musical family, Vítezslava Kaprálová was one of the brightest young composers to emerge in Czech music inbetween the two world wars. You may have come across her name in association with her mentor, the composer Bohuslav Martinu, with whom she later became romantically involved, but irrespective of that link Kaprálová achieved considerable success under her own steam, notching up a series of professional achievements that set her apart from her contemporaries. She was the first woman to graduate as a composer from the Brno Conservatory, the first woman to be given the prestigious Smetana award for composition and the first woman to conduct the Czech Philharmonic. Here in the UK Kaprálová joined the ranks of British composer Dame Ethel Smyth and Nadia Boulanger in conducting the BBC Symphony Orchestra before the Second World War.

There's litte doubt that the turbulence of the times in which Kaprálová lived created obstacles in her creative path. She became an exile after the Munich Agreement of 1938 and the subsequent onset of the Second World War. Furthermore, like the talented French composer, Lili Boulanger some twenty years earlier, Kaprálová's life was cut short; she died in France in 1940, at the age of just twenty-five. Nonetheless she was able to compose quickly and naturally, so a sizeable legacy exists of some fifty works, spread across vocal, chamber, solo piano and orchestral forms. Donald Macleod explores Vítezslava Kaprálová's extraordinary story with Karla Hartl, the founder of The Kaprálová Society.

The opportunity to study in Paris marked a personal turning point in the life of the young Czech composer Vítezslava Kaprálová. She arrived there in 1938, as the terms of the Munich Accord, which gave part of Czechoslovakia to Germany, were being thrashed out. A year later the Germans invaded her homeland. For Kaprálová this had a profound result. She would remain in exile for the rest of her life. Her life became increasingly complicated. Money was hard to come by and her relationship with her composition mentor, Bohuslav Martinu, deepened emotionally. Presented by Donald Macleod, with Karla Hartl, founder of The Kaprálová Society.

Smutny vecer (Sad Evening)

Olena Tokar, soprano

Igor Gryshyn, piano

Waving Farewell

Czech Symphony Orchestra of Brno

Vilém Pribl, tenor

Frantísek Jílek, conductor

String Quartet, Op.8 (3rd movement: Allegro con variazioni)

Škampa Quartet

Martinu: Koleda milostná (Love Carol) for voice & piano

Kaprálová: Koleda milostná (Love Carol) for voice & piano

Lenka Škornicková, soprano

Jítka Drobílková, piano

Variations sur le carillon

Virginia Eskin, piano

Suita rustica

Brno Philharmonic

Jirí Pinkas, conductor.

04Paris20151015

04Paris20151015

Donald Macleod details Kapralova's move to Paris to study with Charles Munch.

04Paris20151015

Donald Macleod details Kapralova's move to Paris to study with Charles Munch.

04Paris20151015

04Paris20151015

Vítezslava Kaprálová wins an award to study in Paris with Charles Munch, and is mentored by fellow Czech Bohuslav Martinu.

Born in 1915 into a musical family, Vítezslava Kaprálová was one of the brightest young composers to emerge in Czech music inbetween the two world wars. You may have come across her name in association with her mentor, the composer Bohuslav Martinu, with whom she later became romantically involved, but irrespective of that link Kaprálová achieved considerable success under her own steam, notching up a series of professional achievements that set her apart from her contemporaries. She was the first woman to graduate as a composer from the Brno Conservatory, the first woman to be given the prestigious Smetana award for composition and the first woman to conduct the Czech Philharmonic. Here in the UK Kaprálová joined the ranks of British composer Dame Ethel Smyth and Nadia Boulanger in conducting the BBC Symphony Orchestra before the Second World War.

There's litte doubt that the turbulence of the times in which Kaprálová lived created obstacles in her creative path. She became an exile after the Munich Agreement of 1938 and the subsequent onset of the Second World War. Furthermore, like the talented French composer, Lili Boulanger some twenty years earlier, Kaprálová's life was cut short; she died in France in 1940, at the age of just twenty-five. Nonetheless she was able to compose quickly and naturally, so a sizeable legacy exists of some fifty works, spread across vocal, chamber, solo piano and orchestral forms. Donald Macleod explores Vítezslava Kaprálová's extraordinary story with Karla Hartl, the founder of The Kaprálová Society.

The opportunity to study in Paris marked a personal turning point in the life of the young Czech composer Vítezslava Kaprálová. She arrived there in 1938, as the terms of the Munich Accord, which gave part of Czechoslovakia to Germany, were being thrashed out. A year later the Germans invaded her homeland. For Kaprálová this had a profound result. She would remain in exile for the rest of her life. Her life became increasingly complicated. Money was hard to come by and her relationship with her composition mentor, Bohuslav Martinu, deepened emotionally. Presented by Donald Macleod, with Karla Hartl, founder of The Kaprálová Society.

Smutny vecer (Sad Evening)

Olena Tokar, soprano

Igor Gryshyn, piano

Waving Farewell

Czech Symphony Orchestra of Brno

Vilém Pribl, tenor

Frantísek Jílek, conductor

String Quartet, Op.8 (3rd movement: Allegro con variazioni)

Škampa Quartet

Martinu: Koleda milostná (Love Carol) for voice & piano

Kaprálová: Koleda milostná (Love Carol) for voice & piano

Lenka Škornicková, soprano

Jítka Drobílková, piano

Variations sur le carillon

Virginia Eskin, piano

Suita rustica

Brno Philharmonic

Jirí Pinkas, conductor.

04Paris20151015

Vítezslava Kaprálová wins an award to study in Paris with Charles Munch, and is mentored by fellow Czech Bohuslav Martinu.

Born in 1915 into a musical family, Vítezslava Kaprálová was one of the brightest young composers to emerge in Czech music inbetween the two world wars. You may have come across her name in association with her mentor, the composer Bohuslav Martinu, with whom she later became romantically involved, but irrespective of that link Kaprálová achieved considerable success under her own steam, notching up a series of professional achievements that set her apart from her contemporaries. She was the first woman to graduate as a composer from the Brno Conservatory, the first woman to be given the prestigious Smetana award for composition and the first woman to conduct the Czech Philharmonic. Here in the UK Kaprálová joined the ranks of British composer Dame Ethel Smyth and Nadia Boulanger in conducting the BBC Symphony Orchestra before the Second World War.

There's litte doubt that the turbulence of the times in which Kaprálová lived created obstacles in her creative path. She became an exile after the Munich Agreement of 1938 and the subsequent onset of the Second World War. Furthermore, like the talented French composer, Lili Boulanger some twenty years earlier, Kaprálová's life was cut short; she died in France in 1940, at the age of just twenty-five. Nonetheless she was able to compose quickly and naturally, so a sizeable legacy exists of some fifty works, spread across vocal, chamber, solo piano and orchestral forms. Donald Macleod explores Vítezslava Kaprálová's extraordinary story with Karla Hartl, the founder of The Kaprálová Society.

The opportunity to study in Paris marked a personal turning point in the life of the young Czech composer Vítezslava Kaprálová. She arrived there in 1938, as the terms of the Munich Accord, which gave part of Czechoslovakia to Germany, were being thrashed out. A year later the Germans invaded her homeland. For Kaprálová this had a profound result. She would remain in exile for the rest of her life. Her life became increasingly complicated. Money was hard to come by and her relationship with her composition mentor, Bohuslav Martinu, deepened emotionally. Presented by Donald Macleod, with Karla Hartl, founder of The Kaprálová Society.

Smutny vecer (Sad Evening)

Olena Tokar, soprano

Igor Gryshyn, piano

Waving Farewell

Czech Symphony Orchestra of Brno

Vilém Pribl, tenor

Frantísek Jílek, conductor

String Quartet, Op.8 (3rd movement: Allegro con variazioni)

Škampa Quartet

Martinu: Koleda milostná (Love Carol) for voice & piano

Kaprálová: Koleda milostná (Love Carol) for voice & piano

Lenka Škornicková, soprano

Jítka Drobílková, piano

Variations sur le carillon

Virginia Eskin, piano

Suita rustica

Brno Philharmonic

Jirí Pinkas, conductor.

05The War Years20151016
05The War Years20151016
05The War Years20151016
05The War Years20151016
05The War Years20151016
05The War Years20151016
05The War Years20151016
05The War Years20151016
05The War Years20151016
05The War Years20151016
05The War Years20151016
05The War Years20151016
05The War Years20151016
05The War Years20151016
05The War Years20151016

Donald Macleod looks at Kapralova's final years, living in Paris an exile.

05The War Years20151016

05The War Years20151016
05The War Years20151016

Born in 1915 into a musical family, Vítezslava Kaprálová was one of the brightest young composers to emerge in Czech music inbetween the two world wars. You may have come across her name in association with her mentor, the composer Bohuslav Martinu, with whom she later became romantically involved, but irrespective of that link Kaprálová achieved considerable success under her own steam, notching up a series of professional achievements that set her apart from her contemporaries. She was the first woman to graduate as a composer from the Brno Conservatory, the first woman to be given the prestigious Smetana award for composition and the first woman to conduct the Czech Philharmonic. Here in the UK Kaprálová joined the ranks of British composer Dame Ethel Smyth and Nadia Boulanger in conducting the BBC Symphony Orchestra before the Second World War.

There's litte doubt that the turbulence of the times in which Kaprálová lived created obstacles in her creative path. She became an exile after the Munich Agreement of 1938 and the subsequent onset of the Second World War. Furthermore, like the talented French composer Lili Boulanger some twenty years earlier, Kaprálová's life was cut short; she died in France in 1940, at the age of just twenty-five. Nonetheless she was able to compose quickly and naturally, so a sizeable legacy exists of some fifty works, spread across vocal, chamber, solo piano and orchestral forms. Donald Macleod explores Vítezslava Kaprálová's extraordinary story with Karla Hartl, the founder of The Kaprálová Society.

Now living in exile in Paris, Vítezslava Kaprálová finds her life increasingly insecure. Encouraged by her mentor Martinu, with whom she's been having an affair, she tries unsuccessfully to secure a place at New York's Juilliard School. After breaking off her relationship with Martinu, she decides to marry the Czech writer Jírí Mucha, although she remains conflicted. On the morning of her wedding, one biographer claims she called on Martinu. On her deathbed, her last words were "That's Julietta", a reference to the three note calling card she and Martinu had taken from his opera.

Presented by Donald Macleod, with Karla Hartl from the Kaprálová Society.

Elegy

Stephanie Chase, violin

Virginia Eskin, piano

Sung into the Distance, Op.22

Dana Burešová, soprano

Timothy Cheek, piano

Concertino for Violin, Clarinet and Orchestra, Op.21 (3 movements)

Brno Philharmonic Orchestra

Lukás Danhel, clarinet

Pavel Wallinger, violin

Olga Machonová Pavlu, conductor

Partita, Op.20

Jírí Skovajsa, piano

Czech Symphony Orchestra of Brno

Frantisek Jilek, conductor

Ritornel, Op.25

Ivan Merka, cello

Jaroslav Smýkal, piano.