Weber, Bedřich [Friedrich] Diviš [Dionys]
- Karl Stapleton
(b Velichov, nr Karlovy Vary, Oct 9, 1766; d Prague, Dec 25, 1842). Bohemian composer and teacher. He first had music lessons in his home town with F. Beier. He continued his education at the Gymnasium in nearby Doupov and went to the Klementinum seminary in Prague to study theology, philosophy and law, before turning his attention permanently to music. In 1792 he studied with the Abbé Vogler, and was soon renowned in Prague society as an effective teacher and an excellent pianist. During the late 1790s he gained much local success composing dance and salon pieces for piano and for orchestra; his standing was also enhanced by a number of more substantial works, notably the large patriotic cantata Böhmens Errettung, written for the 1797 birthday celebrations of Emperor Francis II. By 1800 Weber occupied a leading role in Prague musical life. He was involved in the formation of the Verein zur Beförderung der Tonkunst in Böhmen (...