Educated in the Czech Republic (Otakar Ševčík, Prague Conservatoire, J. Kocian), France (École Normale de Musique, Classe Jacques Thibaud) and England (Max Rostal), he made his reputation overseas as a soloist, chamber music player and teacher before coming to Australia in 1961.
As a performer, Jan Sedivka gained special merit for his efforts on behalf of Australian contemporary music. In this capacity he introduced a number of important works dedicated to him, in particular concertos by Larry Sitsky (Nos. 1, 2, 3 & 4), James Penberthy, Ian Cugley, Don Kay, Colin Brumby, Edward Cowie and Eric Gross.
His wife Beryk Sedivka is a noted pianist who often performed with him.
Honours and awards
For his services to music Dr. Sedivka received many honours including:
- Member of the Order of Australia 1987
- Honorary Fellow, Trinity College of Music, London
- Honorary Doctor of Letters, University of Tasmania
- Honorary Professor, Shanghai Conservatory of Music
- Memorial Gold Medal, Prague Academy of Musical Arts
- Honorary Fellowship in Music Australia
- Honorary Citizen, Royal City of Slany (Czech Republic)
- Sir Bernard Heinze Memorial Award 1995 (University of Melbourne)
- Honorary Professor University of Tasmania 1995
- Distinguished Service Award Australian Strings Association 1998.