Zdeněk Liška

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Jump to: navigation, search

Zdeněk Liška (16 March 1922 – 13 August 1983) was a Czech composer who produced a large of number film scores across a prolific career that started in the 1950s. He was revelatory in his contribution to the development of electronic music. His music in is noticeable, revelatory and dramatic, based on the unique musical feeling using quite unusual instrumental combination and various electronic and electroacoustic techniques.

Biography[edit]

Zdeněk Liška was born on 16 March 1922 in Smečno near Kladno in central Bohemia.[1] His father and grandfather were amateur municipal musicians. As a child he learned to play the accordion and the violin; while in high school, he composed his first song.[2]

He studied composition and conducting at Prague Conservatory under Rudolf Karel, Otakar Šín, Metod Doležil, and Karel Janeček. He graduated from the Conservatory in 1944.[2] After a brief stint as a conductor of an amateur orchestra in Slaný and as a teacher at a Humpolec music school, he joined the Zlín Film Studios in 1945.[2]

Works[edit]

Liška worked notably with animator Jan Švankmajer, scoring several of his earlier short films: Punch and Judy (1966), Et Cetera (1966), Historia Naturae (Suita) (1967), The Flat (1968), Don Juan (1969), The Ossuary (1970), Jabberwocky (1971), and Leonardo's Diary (1972), and later The Castle of Otranto (1979). Liška's music for Švankmajer's Historia Naturae (Suita), The Flat, and The Ossuary was also featured in the 1984 short film by American animators the Brothers Quay entitled The Cabinet of Jan Švankmajer.

He also created a great number of iconic scores for important live-action films of the Czech New Wave including The Shop on Main Street, Marketa Lazarová, The Valley of the Bees, Fruit of Paradise and Ikarie XB-1.

In addition to his feature-film work, Liška wrote music for the travel documentary films of Hanzelka and Zikmund, for Laterna Magika, for twelve of Karel Zeman's Mr. Prokouk films, and for various popular science short films.[1] The main theme he wrote for the heavily propagandist television series Thirty Cases of Major Zeman is still widely remembered in the Czech Republic, where it is often played by rock bands.[3]

In the mid-twentieth century, he was among the most well-known Czech film composers[1] and the foremost Czech composer of fantasy film scores.[4] He was noted for his skill with musical characterizations and humor in music, as well as his creative use of electronic music techniques.[1] His score for Death Is Called Engelchen won a prize in a competition for the best Czechoslovak feature-length film score of 1963.[1]

Selected filmography[edit]

  • 1950 - Pára nad hrncem
  • 1952 - Poklad Ptačího ostrova
  • 1953 - Z Argentiny do Mexika, Afrika I a II
  • 1956 - Míček Flíček
  • 1957 - Tam na konečné, Nové světy - selection of archive music
  • 1958 - Vynález zkázy, Muž mnoha tváří
  • 1959 - Probuzení
  • 1960 - Vyšší princip, Holubice, Laterna magika II.
  • 1961 - Baron Prášil (The Fabulous Baron Munchausen), Ďáblova past, Labyrint srdce, Spadla s měsíce
  • 1962 - Půlnoční mše
  • 1963 - Cesta hlubokým lesem, Tři zlaté vlasy děda Vševěda, Ikarie XB-1, Smrt si říká Engelchen
  • 1964 - Čintamani a podvodník, Obžalovaný, Jak dělat podobiznu ptáka
  • 1965 - Obchod na korze (The Shop on Main Street), Sběrné surovosti
  • 1966 - Poklad byzantského kupce, Lidé z maringotek, Anděl blažené smrti
  • 1967 - Údolí včel, Zmluva s diablom, Útěk, Marketa Lazarová
  • 1968 - Spalovač mrtvol, Spravedlnost pro Selvina (TV), The Sinful People of Prague (TV series)
  • 1969 - Adelheid, Vtáčkovia, Siroty a blázni, Touha zvaná Anada, Ovoce stromů rajských jíme
  • 1970 - Partie krásného dragouna, Medená veža
  • 1971 - Smrt černého krále, Pěnička a Paraplíčko, Orlie pierko
  • 1972 - Vlak do stanice Nebe, Ukradená bitva
  • 1973 - Pověst o stříbrné jedli, Hriech Kataríny Padychovej
  • 1974 - Kto odchádza v daždi, Poslední ples na rožnovské plovárně, Jáchyme, hoď ho do stroje
  • 1975 - Tak láska začíná, Nevěsta s nejkrásnějšíma očima
  • 1976 - Dým bramborové natě, Smrt mouchy, Odysseus a hvězdy
  • 1977 - Volání rodu, Na Veliké řece, Osada Havranů, Stíny horkého léta, Příběh lásky a cti, Hodina pravdy
  • 1978 - Silnější než strach, Čekání na déšť, Setkání v červenci
  • 1979 - A poběžím až na kraj světa, Smrť šitá na mieru
  • 1980 - Signum laudis
  • 1981 - Kam zmizel kurýr

References[edit]

  1. ^ a b c d e Gardavský, Čeněk (1965), Contemporary Czechoslovak Composers, Prague: Panton, pp. 280–281 
  2. ^ a b c Maryáš, Jaroslav (2009), Zdeněk Liška a jeho hudba ve filmu Karla Zemana Vynález zkázy (dissertation), Brno: Masaryk University, pp. 11–14, retrieved 4 June 2014 
  3. ^ Richter, Jan (14 April 2011), The film score genius Zdeněk Liška, Radio Prague, retrieved 23 June 2014 
  4. ^ Larson, Randall D. (1985), Musique Fantastique: A Survey of Film Music in the Fantastic Cinema, Metuchen, N.J.: Scarecrow Press, p. 216 

External links[edit]