Dreyschock, Alexander


He was born at Zack, in Bohemia, studied with Tomaschek at Prague, and became a pianist of great attainments and a composer of much beautiful salon music. Beginning in 1838, he traveled through Europe for twenty years, giving concerts. In 1862 he was appointed professor of the piano at the Conservatory at St. Petersburg, and at the same time was chosen director of the Imperial School of Theatrical Music and appointed Court pianist. He also taught in Prague. Shortly after accepting the position at St. Petersburg his health began to fail and he went to Venice, where he died in 1869. Dreyschock's works consist of an opera, Florette; a scherzo; grand sonata; Saltarello; nocturne; premiere scene chapetre; overture for orchestra; rondo for orchestra; string quartet; songs without words, and other music. His variations on God Save the Queen have won much praise. "A pianist of great executive attainments," says Grove in describing him, " and a well-trained musician to boot, but he gave everything in a manner cold and essentially prosaic, though with faultless precision." And the same critic says: " Dreyschock's salon music was of a correct but cold and sterile sort."