Napravnik, Eduard



Composer and distinguished conductor; born at Beisht, Bohemia, but generally classed with Russian musicians. He received the foundation for his musical studies from Pugonny and in 1852 played for the village church. When he was fifteen years old his father died and he had to support himself and finish his musical education without further instruction. He had had one year at the Prague Organ School. From 1856 to 1861 he was a teacher at Maydl Music Institute of Prague and studied organ under Kitel. He next went to St. Petersburg, where he became private chap~ elmaster to Prince Yussupow. In 1863 he was appointed assistant, then second conductor at the Imperial Russian Theatre, and in 1869 succeeded Liadov as chief master. Nepravnik continued the work Liadov had begun, that of producing purely Russian compositions at the Royal Theatre. He has succeeded so well as an organizer, diplomatic manager and accomplished director that he has placed the Imperial Russian Opera among the finest in the world. While best known as a conductor, his compositions are of value and have been well received. They include several operas, The Inhabitants of Nishnij Novgorod, Harold, Dubroffsky, and Francesca da Rimini; a symphonic poem, The Demon; Bohemian and Russian Songs; a Russian Fantasia for piano; three symphonies; an overture, Vlasta; and piano-pieces.