Born just north of Prague (in Nelahozeves on the Vltava River) on 08 September 1841 is Antonín Dvořák — the first child of Anna and František Dvořák, a butcher.
While his name may not be familiar at first, you would have most certainly heard of his classical compositions. Indeed, Antonín Dvořák was a highly passionate Czech whose musical creations in life have transcended national (and even Earthly) boundaries around the world.
Where Have I Heard That?
At the heart of it all, Dvořák — a contemporary of Brahms and Tchaikovsky — was a wellspring of melody, with joyful tunes and anguishing notes present in equal measure in his music.
But you may be thinking, “where have I heard of that iconic tune before?”
Voted the most iconic UK ad of all time, Ridley Scott’s Hovis ad featured the Largo from Dvořák’s Ninth Symphony, titled “From the New World” that was arranged for a brass band. Furthermore, in 1969, Neil Armstrong also took Dvořák’s music (in the form of a tape) on the Apollo 11 mission to the moon.
Four decades prior to this space mission, Walt Disney’s iconic 1929 animation, Mickey’s Choo Choo had the global icon dancing on railway sleepers to the tune of Dvořák’s Humoresque. And in more modern times, Jo and Laurie dancing (albeit anachronistically) to the scherzo of Dvořák’s “American” quartet in Greta Gerwig’s 2019 film Little Women is a sight to behold.