Bohuslav Martinů was a Czech composer of the Romantic era whose compositions display a unique combination of French and Czech connections. In 1913, Martinů learned violin from the age of six, took part in the Conservatory, and was expelled from Prague. In 1940, Martinů avoided the German conquest of France and lived in the United States where he taught in Princeton and at the Berkshire Music School. While he intended to return to Prague at the conservatory after the end of World War II, he lived in the United States mainly until 1957 when he went to Rome to work as a resident composer in the American Academy.
His orchestral works Half-Time in 1924 and La Bagarre in 1927 were encouraged by modern events, the Czech-French football and the crowd that greeted Charles Lindbergh's plane at the end of the transatlantic trip, respectively. Of his later compositions, the Concerto grosso for chamber orchestra (1941) demonstrates Martinůs skill in polyphonic composition by alternating soloists with the full orchestra found in a baroque concerto grosso. The Double Concerto for two string orchestras (1940) is a strong piece of Czech misery in response to the division of Czechoslovakia (1938).
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