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Czech composer Vladimír Soukup was born in 1930 at Prague, Czechoslovakia. After grammar school, he gained a formal education in composition at the Academy of Music (AMU) in Prague under Professor Jaroslav Řídky. He graduated in 1955 with his Youth Symphony after which time, he started composing popular music and musical codies besides serious music. However, from 1960 on, he concentrated only on serious music. During this period, he created his own characteristic form of composition. He stresses emphatic melodious-rhythmical ideas, a clearly evident architecture and a particular spontaneity in his compositions. In his own words he says, “My music is not eccentrically experimental, but real music for all people in modern rhythms and chords where melody is the basic communication media.”


Typical for him are his pugnacious, wild musical thoughts which are in sharp contrast to the lyrical motifs that alternate with rhythmically piquant intermezzos.


Soukup makes efforts in all his works to express not only the rhythm and dynamics of contemporary times, but also, and particularly, the pregnant atmosphere and the drama of the present day. It is important to remember that he lived during the repressive era of the communist regime which ended in November 1989. His work is based on the opinion that art is not only a matter of holding up a mirror to society, but that in the first place, people should find hope in a work of art. That is why he makes the utmost effort to have his compositions understood not only by real music lovers, but also by the person on the street.


His musical output includes 5 operas, 6 concerti, 13 chamber works, and 9 sonati for instrument and piano or harp. “Sonata for Violin and Piano” was written in 1963.


Vladimír Soukup died on March 3, 2012 at Prague, Czech Republic.

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