The Dvořák Society helps young musicians and Czech and Slovak musical institutions


T he Dvořák Society is dedicated to providing charitable support to young Czech or Slovak artists and appropriate musical institutions whenever a deserving cause is identified and our funds allow. In addition, the Society has led specific fund raising appeals for dedicated projects where the sums involved are outside our usual funding capability. This web page describes some of our fund raising and charitable activities.

The Society welcomes financial support from all sources towards furthering our charitable aims.

United Kingdom tax payers can make donations under the government “Gift Aid” scheme and thereby enable the Society to recover income tax paid on the sum.

For further details, please contact any of the Society’s executive officers listed on our introduction page … 

F  The Dartington Scholarship Appeal

Objective: to enable a Czech or Slovak graduate musician to attend a one-week masterclass at the prestigious International Summer School held annually at Dartington, Devon.

Status: fund is open.

Date Launched: August 1998, to mark the Society’s 25th Anniversary in 1999.

Initial Target: £10,000. Proceeds from sales of donated CDs go towards this continuing appeal.

Achieved: £18,000 as at March 2012.

Scholars awarded Dartington places /

2016Jan Nečaský (violoncello) participated in the Masterclass of Adrian Brendel and played in the chamber orchetra for the opera productions.

Jan was born in Semily in 1993 and started playing the violoncello at the age of seven. After several years, he moved to Prague to take classes with Jan Vychytil.

In 2009, he was accepted at the Music Gymnasium in Prague where he was taught by Martin Škampa and his father Mirko Škampa. After graduating from the gymnasium, he spent one year studying at the Prague Conservatory in the class of Michal Kaňka. Jan has been studying with him also at the Music Faculty of the Academy of Performing Arts (HAMU) where he is now in his second year.

In 2007 Jan won the 1st prize and the jury prize in the competition Prague Junior Note. He won the first and second prizes at the Talents for Europe in Slovakia and in the national competition of the Czech music schools.

Since the beginning of his music studies, Jan has been active as an orchestral and chamber player. He was a member of a string quarter which was awarded in the national music school competition as well as in Karl Ditterse competition. Currently, he is a member of a piano trio and a piano quartet giving concerts mainly in Prague. Jan also plays with well known orchestras, such as PKF (Prague Philharmonia) and PKO (Prague Chamber Orchestra).

His repertoire includes concertos by J. Haydn, C. Saint-Saëns (Concerto in A minor), Dvořák (Concerto in B minor), Honnegger, Martinů (Concerto No. 1), sonatas and solo suites by J. S. Bach, Beethoven, Brahms, Rachmaninoff, and D. Shostakovich. Although he enjoys playing compositions by almost all composers, he has a special liking for Martinů’s sonatas and his chamber pieces.

Jan collaborates with the young conductor Chuhei Iwasaki, with whom he performed Dvořák’s violoncello Concerto B Minor in April 2015.

In January 2016 Jan performed Dvořák´s Concerto in Harbin Opera House in China.

He attended the Dartington International Summer School between 13th-20th August where he participated in the Masterclass of Adrian Brendel playing Honegger‘s Cello Concerto and Martinů’s Variations on a Theme of Rossini. He also played in the chamber orchetra for the opera productions. To quote Jan… “Everything was wonderful – organisation, workshops, concerts and masterclass. And everybody was helpful and great…”.

Clearly he made an impression on Adrian Brendel who recommended him for postgraduate study in London.

Jaromir Nosek (bass) 2012 —Jaromír Nosek (bass) from Prague attended Dame Emma Kirkby’s Masterclass.

Jaromír Nosek graduated first from the Faculty of Education, Charles University in Prague, in the field of choir conducting under Professor Miroslav Košler. After that he fully focused on his main area of professional interest: having finished his opera singing studies at the Prague Conservatory in Jiří Kotouč’s class, he went on to the Academy of Performing Arts in Prague where he studied under Professor Roman Janál from 2009. He is a laureate of the Mozartian Dušek Vocal Competition in Prague.

He specialises in Rennaissance, Baroque and Classical repertoire. A member of Collegium Vocale 1704, he also performs with other Czech Baroque music ensembles such as Musica Florea, Collegium Marianum, Ensemble Inégal and Capella Mariana.

2011 —  Lenka Kotrbová (soprano) from České Budějovice was the awarded place (but this was not taken up).

Veronika Klírová (flautist) Vojtěch Urban (cellist)

2010 — The Dvořák Society funded two scholars in 2010.

Veronika Klírová (flautist) from Plzeň attended the Woodwind Workshop led by Sarah Francis.

Vojtěch Urban (cellist) from Ústí nad Labem attended the Masterclass led by Karine Georgian.

Veronika Klírová was born in 1988. From 2003 to 2009 she studied at the Plzeň Conservatory in the class of Jana Brejchová. In 2010 she graduated from the Janáček Academy of Music and Performing Arts in Brno (JAMU) and later studied in Cologne (Hochschule für Musik und Tanz Köln). On 26 June 2014 Veronika was appointed as Principal Second Flute by the City of Birmingham Symphony Orchestra.

Vojtěch Urban graduated from the music department of the Jan Neruda Grammar School (Gymnázium Jana Nerudy) in Prague. He has also studied at the Academy of Music (HAMU), Prague.

2004 — a plan for a scholarship award in 2002 had to be curtailed because of major reconstruction work on the Dartington Estate, so 2004 was chosen instead. To mark the Year of Czech Music (which commemorated the centenary of Dvořák’s death and the 150th anniversary of Janáček’ birth) the Society decided to award two scholarships, including one of the two week courses (either composition or conducting). Dartington’s own Trust funding was secured for the second week. The selected students were chosen in consultation with the Academy of Music in Prague (HAMU) and the Janáček Academy in Brno (JAMU).

Ivana Mikesková (soprano) from Nitra, Slovakia: had the opportunity to work with Patricia Rozario in the master-classes and Pippa Longworth in the vocal workshops. Both her teachers at Dartington felt that she was among the best students of the week and had the potential for a good singing career ahead of her.

Tomáš Pálka (composer) from Brno, Czech Republic: attended the Advanced Composition Course, which was under the direction of Pavel Novák. At the end of the two weeks, all seven of the very talented young composers had the benefit of hearing their compositions played by the members of two leading Czech ensembles — the MoEns (the Czech Republic’s leading contemporary music group) and the Martinů Quartet. Tomáš Pálka’s work Moon silences was the longest of the main compositions and was scored for flute, clarinet, violin, viola, violoncello and piano, spatially placed around the hall, while his miniature, Shortly from Dartington Gardens, was scored for the same ensemble.

Ivana Mikesková and Tomáš Pálka with Graham Melville-Mason
Ivana Mikesková and Tomáš Pálka
with Graham Melville-Mason at Dartington

September 1999 —  first award: to Lukáš Bendl (organ scholar), to study with David Titterington.

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F  Emmy Destinn Singing Competition

Andrew Dickinson (tenor)

Biennial Prize: £500 to be awarded for the best performance of a vocal piece composed by a 20th century Czech composer (sung in Czech).

Emmy Destinn Prize

The final of the 10th Competition will take place on Wednesday, 15th November 2017 at 7.15 pm in the Czernin Hall Velehrad, 39 Lonsdale Road London SW13 9JP. Tickets £8, student and OAPs £5 Complimentary glass of wine, beer or soft drink incl. Please register your interest by email to: or call Dana on 07794848075

First awarded: November 2011 to the British tenor, Andrew Dickinson, for his performance of two of Pavel Haas’s 7 Songs in Folk Style/7 písní v lidovém tónu (“Připoved/A Promise” and “Což je vic?/It’s Your Affair” and Skuratov’s aria from Janáček’s House of the Dead/Z mrtvého domu.

Andrew Dickinson began his singing career as a chorister at the Metropolitan Cathedral in Liverpool, where he was made Head Chorister in his final year in 1997. After studying piano and he began to discover his tenor voice, initially studying with Ted Roberts for 2 years. At 17 he studied for a further two years with Colin Iveson of the Royal Northern College of Music. Subsequently, he studied with Peter Alexander Wilson in Glasgow at the Royal Scottish Academy of Music and Drama (now the Royal Conservatoire of Scotland). At the Royal Academy of Music in London he studied with Ryland Davies.

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F  Biarritz International Organ Festival (2009)

Balázs Szábo (organist)

Prize: 500 euros was given for the best performance of an organ piece by Czech composer Petr Eben. The competition was won by Balázs Szábo of Hungary for his performance of Laudes IV.

Balázs Szábo was born in Miskolc, north-eastern Hungary, in 1985. He began his musical training at age 15 in his hometown. From 2003 he studied organ at the Franz Liszt Music Academy in Budapest, then in Würzburg , Trossingen and Rome. Since 2011 he has taught at the Ferenc Liszt Academy.

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F  Dvořák Website

Objective: To fund the translation from Czech into English of the comprehensive website devoted to Antonín Dvořák compiled by Ondřej Šupka. This will provide an invaluable information source for English-speaking members and the general public. A link to the website will be contained on the Society’s own website.

Cost: £4,500 (made up of the unused money held in reserve for the Prague Computer Fund, topped up from Society reserves.) Estimated date for completion mid 2013.

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F  The Vysoká Project

Objective: Dvořák’s summer home at Vysoká near Příbram is a place where he found solace and inspiration leading to the creation of many important works. The house, still owned by the family, was in need of significant remedial work and the Society decided to raise funds towards its preservation.

This project had 3 phases —
Phase 1: To produce a photographic and video record of all contents and artefacts.
Phase 2: To provide sufficient funds to assist the Dvořák family in making immediate repairs to the fabric of the building. This was to include repairs to the roof and windows to make the building weatherproof and to the boundary wall for security. An on-going series of repairs and improvements was planned in order to preserve this important location and its contents.
Phase 3: Provision for longer-term preservation, repairs and security as funds allow.

Date Launched: July 1994.

Date Completed:
Phase 1, July 1994;
Phase 2, November 1994;
Phase 3, on going.

Target: £3,500.

Achieved: £6,000.

Status: Fund is now closed with £5,648 reserve.

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F  The Computer Fund

Objective: to provide the Dvořák Society of Prague with the hardware and software for the establishment of an International Dvořák Database. The system comprises computer, printer and database software in three languages (Czech, English & German) and is installed at the Dvořák Museum, Villa America, Ke Karlovu 20, Prague 2.

Date Launched: April 1991.

Date Completed: September 1991.

Target: £3–4,000 (revised to £7,000).

Achieved: £8,000 (£2,300 reserve for future upgrades & maintenance)

Status: the fund is now closed. In 2011 it was agreed to terminate the project and reallocate the money to another initiative.

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