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  • (c) Luca Rossetti
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Czech National Symphony Orchestra: Dvorák's 8th Symphony

Prague, Municipal House (Obecní dum) — Smetana Hall

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About the Event

Steven Mercurio conducts the Czech National Symphony Orchestra in a wonderful program of works including Dvorák's 'english' symphony along masterpieces by Ennio Morricone, Nino Rota in the prestigious Smetana Hall.


  • Steven Mercurio – Mercurial Overture
  • Ennio Morricone – The Hateful Eight (Oscar, Best Original Score)
  • Nino Rota – La Strada
  • Antonín Dvořák – Symphony No. 8 “English
Program is subject to change

Cast / Production

Czech National Symphony Orchestra
Steven Mercurio, conductor
Jan Hasenöhrl, trumpet


Orchestra: Czech National Symphony Orchestra

Renowned for its versatility, the Czech National Symphony Orchestra presents a broad program, ranging from classical and contemporary music through film scores, jazz, and musicals. The home concert stage of the orchestra is the beautiful Smetana Hall of Prague's Municipal House.

Conductor: Steven Mercurio

Maestro Mercurio is an internationally acclaimed conductor and composer whose musical versatility encompasses the symphonic and operatic worlds. For five years, he was Music Director of the Spoleto Festival and Principal Conductor of the Opera Company of Philadelphia. Maestro Mercurio is also a sought after collaborator for many award winning recordings, arrangements and film projects. His relationship with SONY Classical has led him to collaborate on a great number of recordings, most notably, “Christmas in Vienna” with the Three Tenors, Carreras, Domingo and Pavarotti. He has also recorded Richard Einhorn’s cantata, Voices of Light, Leo Brouwer’s Concerto de Toronto with guitarist John Williams, “Storyteller,” featuring compositions by Wynton Marsalis, Patrick Doyle and Edgar Meyer, three violin concertos with the composer‐violinist Mark O’Connor, and a Grammy Award winning CD with Chick Corea.

As a composer, Maestro Mercurio's compositions include songs, chamber works, and pieces for large orchestra. 'For Lost Loved Ones,' was given its world premiere by Zubin Mehta and the New York Philharmonic Orchestra. Maestro Mercurio is an acclaimed and sought after arranger. He has created arrangements for a wide array of artists, including Andrea Bocelli, Placido Domingo, Fabio Armiliato, Carl Tanner, Ben Heppner, Bryn Terfel, Marcello Giordani, Secret Garden and Sting.

Trumpet: Jan Hasenöhrl

Municipal House (Obecní dum)

The Municipal House is a popular Prague attraction and one of the most beautiful buildings in the Old Town, situated at Republic Square not far from the Powder Gate. In the Middle Ages the site housed the palace of the King of Bohemia,and was later used as a college, archbishop´s residence, and a military academy. The structure was eventually torn down, and in 1912 the new Municipal House was erected in the Art Nouveau style. Since opening, the Municipal House has been a glamorous location for festive balls, concerts, exhibitions and important meetings, including the declaration of Czechoslovak Independence in 1918. Today the Municipal House is used primarily as a venue for classical concerts in Prague. Its main hall is named after famous Czech composer Bedrich Smetana, and serves as one of the principal stages for the Prague Spring International Music Festival. The hall can accommodate up to 1200 people and has unique acoustics. The architectural highlight of the Smetana Hall is a glass dome decorated with steel grids and stained glass, which is illuminated when darkness falls. A place of pilgrimage for many of the worlds greatest organists, the real jewel of the Municipal House is the great organ, its almost 5000 pipes crowned with Smetana´s portrait.

Antonín Dvořák

Antonin Dvorak is considered to be one of the most well-known and prominent Czechs in the world, as his musical work gained international recognition already during his lifetime. He was born in 1841 in a small Czech village into a butcher’s family. At the age of 6, Dvorak started taking violin lessons and it immediately became obvious that the boy had exceptional talent in music. Later in life, he was learning to master piano and organ as well as simultaneously working in a slaughterhouse. After Dvorak turned 16, he was admitted to the Organ School in Prague that trained future professional composers. After graduating, he stayed in Prague, joined Karel Komzak’s orchestra and started actively composing his own music. However, he struggled to make ends meet and always had to work on the side by playing music in churches and giving private music lessons. Finally, 1874 became a turning point in his life when he won a financial grant from an Austrian Prize competition for his 15 submitted works. This allowed him to quit the orchestra and devote himself fully to composing. During this period, he wrote his Slavonic Dances, Moravian Duets and Violin Concerto, which brought him sweeping success. In 1892 he was invited to teach at the New York National Conservatory, where he stayed until 1895 before returning home. He started teaching at the Prague conservatory and later became its director. Until his death in 1904, he had been a successful and well-loved composer, both in his homeland and around the whole world.


Municipal House (Obecní dum), 5 Republic Square (Namesti republiky 5), Prague, Czech Republic — Google Maps

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