Franz Benda (Czech : František Benda) baptised 22 November 1709, Benátky nad Jizerou – 7 March 1786, Potsdam) was a Bohemian violinist and composer, who worked for much of his life at the court of Frederick the Great.
Benda was born in Old Benatek in Bohemia, the son of Jan Jiří Benda. His brother was the composer Georg Benda. Benda's daughter Juliane Reichardt (1752–1783) and his granddaughter Louise Reichardt (1779–1826) were also composers. Benda wrote his autobiography in 1763: it not only gives a detailed account of his own life but also a valuable record of the lives of other musicians whom he encountered during his career.
In his youth Benda was a chorister in Prague and afterward in the Chapel Royal at Dresden. At the same time he began to study the violin, and soon joined a company of strolling musicians who attended fetes, fairs, etc. At eighteen years of age Benda abandoned this wandering life and returned to Prague, going to Vienna, where he pursued his study of the violin under Johann Gottlieb Graun, a pupil of Tartini. After two years he was appointed chapel master at Warsaw. In 1732, he entered the service of Frederick the Great, then crown prince of Prussia, with whom he remained the rest of his life. He was a member of the crown prince's orchestra, and later became concertmaster to the king.He played about 50,000 concertos over a period of forty years. At Benda's request, Frederick allowed his parents and siblings to move to Potsdam when, as Protestants, they suffered religious persecution in Bohemia.
Benda was a master of all the difficulties of violin playing, and the rapidity of his execution and the mellow sweetness of his highest notes were unequalled. He had many pupils and wrote a number of works, chiefly exercises and studies for the violin.
Benda died in the Nowawes, a small colony near Potsdam set up by Frederick the Great to house Protestant refugees fleeing religious persecution in Bohemia.
Descendants of Benda also continue in the same musical line. In the 20th century, František Benda was a composer of film scores and other works. The Benda Chamber Orchestra, which carries and honours the name of the Benda musical family, was founded in 1956 in Ústí nad Labem, Northern Bohemia (Czech Republic). One of his descendants, Jean Sebastian Benda, acclaimed Swiss pianist, lived in Brazil, having married the pianist Luzia Benda. After his return to Europe, in 1981, along with his wife and children born in Brazil, his family follows the musical tradition of their ancestors.
Benda composed 17 symphonies, numerous concerti and sonatas for violin, and other chamber works.
František Xaver Brixi was a Czech classical composer of the 18th century. His first name is sometimes given by reference works in its Germanic form, Franz.
Georg Anton Benda, , was a Czech composer, violinist and Kapellmeister of the classical period.
The Concerto for Piano and Orchestra in G minor, Op. 33, is the only piano concerto by Czech composer Antonín Dvořák. Written in 1876, it was the first of three concertos that Dvořák completed, followed by the Violin Concerto, Op. 53 from 1879 and the Cello Concerto, Op. 104, written in 1894–1895. The piano concerto is probably the least known and least performed of Dvořák's concertos.
František Ignác Antonín Tůma was an important Czech composer of the Baroque era. Born in Kostelec nad Orlici, Bohemia, he lived the greater part of his life in Vienna, first as director of music for Count Franz Ferdinand Kinsky, later filling a similar office for the widow of Emperor Karl VI. He was an important late-baroque composer, organist, gambist and theorbist.
Leopold Koželuch was a Czech composer and music teacher.
Milan Munclinger was a significant Czech flautist, conductor, composer and musical scientist.
Ars Rediviva was a Czech classical instrumental music group, whose historically-informed performances played a key role in the revival of Baroque music in Czechoslovakia.
Lubor Bárta was a Czech composer.
Hanuš Wihan was a renowned Czech cellist, considered the greatest of his time. He was strongly associated with the works of Antonín Dvořák, whose Cello Concerto in B minor, Rondo in G minor, and the short piece Silent Woods were all dedicated to him. He was the founder and later cellist of the Czech String Quartet, which was world-famous throughout its 40-year existence.
Juliane Reichardt, née Benda, was a Bohemian pianist, singer and composer.
Jan Adam František Míča was a Bohemian composer, jurist, and nephew of the kapellmeister František Václav Míča.
František Jiránek was a Czech (Bohemian) Baroque composer, musician and very likely a student of Antonio Vivaldi.
The surname Benda may refer to:
Josef Benda, also Joseph Benda, was a Bohemian violinist and composer active in Germany.
Jan Jiří Benda, also Johann Georg Benda, was a Bohemian violinist and composer active in Germany.
Friedrich Wilhelm Heinrich Benda was a German violinist, pianist and composer of the classical era.
Milan Křížek was a Czech composer, music teacher and viola player.
Jiří Čart was a Bohemian composer, violinist and flautist of the late baroque period.
Franz Adam Veichtner, also known as "Feichtner" was a German violinist and composer of the classical era.
Karl Hermann Heinrich Benda, was a German violinist and composer of Bohemian origin.
Lee, Douglas A. (2001). "Franz Benda". In Root, Deane L. (ed.). The New Grove Dictionary of Music and Musicians . Oxford University Press.
|Wikimedia Commons has media related to František Benda .|