Oakeley, Sir Herbert (Stanley)

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Östman, Arnold

(b Malmö, 24 Dec 1939). Swedish conductor. He studied first art history, then music, in Paris and in Stockholm, where later he taught at the Musikhögskölan. He was music director at the academy at Vadstena in southern Sweden, 1970–82, where he fostered the study and performance of Baroque opera, notably works by Monteverdi and Stradella, and in 1979 became music director of the Drottningholm court theatre near Stockholm, where he remained until 1991. There he directed many performances, in particular of Mozart's operas but also of works by Gluck, Kraus and others, on period instruments. A production of Cimarosa's Il matrimonio segreto that he conducted in 1983 at Cologne, also seen in Washington, DC, and London, won much praise for its spirit and style. The next year he made his Covent Garden début, in Don Giovanni, since when he has conducted widely in Europe, chiefly in a Classical repertory but also in operas by Rossini, notably a Cenerentola at Dresden in 1991. He conducted Lucio Silla at the Vienna Staatsoper in 1990. Östman's recordings of the three Da Ponte-Mozart operas, made in the late 1980s, set new standards in period-style performance of these works and did much to enhance general awareness of the advantages of light instrumental textures, lively tempos, stylish ornamentation and observation of the obligatory appoggiaturas. Così fan tutte, the first to appear, attracted criticism for its tempos (often substantially faster than traditional ones), as have many of his performances; but some mild moderation of his approach, coupled with an increasing public sympathy with his artistic aims, led to the two other recordings receiving critical and general praise as well as winning a number of awards. In recent years Östman has continued to conduct regularly at Drottningholm, and has made admired recordings of Die Zauberflöte and the Vienna version of Gluck's Alceste.



(Ger. Ostrau).

City in north Moravia, Czech Republic. Between 1850 and 1930 it was known as Moravská Ostrava (Mährisch Ostrau). Its major development began in the 19th century, following the coal mining boom. Workers' choral groups appeared before 1848 and were especially active in the 1870s, but were severely restricted during World War II. The Marx choir, founded in 1900 by Czech and German workers together, is still active under the name Mužský Pěvecký Sbor (Men's Choir). Other existing choirs with long traditions are the Pěvecké Sdružení Moravských Učitelů (Moravian Teachers' Choir, founded 1903), Pěvecké Sdružení Ostravských Učitelek (Ostrava Women Teachers' Choir, 1955), Vysokoškolský Pěvecký Sbor (University Choir, 1966) and Ostravský Dětský Sbor (Ostrava Children's Choir). The Hornická Hudba (Miners' Band, 1922) is also still playing, as are the Vítkovák and Ostravanka brass bands. These enjoy great popularity and take part in many international festivals.

Between 1894 and 1918 theatre companies, which also presented operas and operettas, performed in the Národní Dům (National House). The Městské Divadlo (Municipal Theatre) was built in 1906–7, enlarged in 1942, destroyed in World War II and rebuilt in 1955 and 1971 (cap. 874). Originally it served as a German theatre, but in 1919–20 performances in Czech and German were given alternately and it took the name Národní Divadlo Moravsko-Slezské (National Moravian-Silesian Theatre). From 1920 performances were in Czech, except during World War II, when German was the only language. Thereafter its name was changed to Zemské Divadlo v Ostravě (Provincial Theatre in Ostrava); in 1948 it was nationalized as Státní Divadlo Zdeňka Nejedlého (Zdeněk Nejedlý State Theatre), and from 1992 it was again known as the National Moravian-Silesian Theatre.

A Czech opera ensemble was organized under Emanuel Bastl in 1918. It had a remarkable repertory, giving a Smetana cycle in 1924 and focussing on contemporary works, especially Janáček. Its next conductor, Jaroslav Vogel (1927–44), successfully established the company in the forefront of Czech musical culture. Later conductors were Zdeněk Chalabala (1945–7), Vogel again (1947–9), Rudolf Vašata (1949–56), Bohumil Gregor (1958–62), Zdeněk Košler (1962–6) and Jiří Pinkas (1966–78). For 27 seasons (1951–78) the stage director was Ilja Hylas. Bastl also started a tradition of regular concerts. So as to perform works by modern composers (e.g. Schoenberg and Bartók) he combined the theatre orchestra with that of the radio station. Hindemith, Stravinsky and Prolofiev conducted their own works.

The Ostrava radio station, with its orchestra, started activity in 1929. The orchestra subsequently became the Ostravský Symfonický Orchestr (1954, conducted by Otakar Pařík); the Státní Filharmonie Ostrava (1962, Václav Jiráček) and then the Janáčkova Filharmonie Ostrava (1971, Otakar Trhlík). Chamber ensembles associated with it included the Ostravské Kvarteto and the Komorní Orchestr Leose Janáčka, founded and conducted for more than 20 years by Josef Staněk, which twice won the Karajan competition in Berlin. In 1923 the amateur Ostravská Filharmonie was founded; in 1926 it was renamed the Filharmonické Sdružení (Philharmonic Association), and in 1935 the Orchestrální Sdružení. It was active until the late 1970s.

The Matiční Hudební Škola (Foundation Music School) existed before 1918. After World War II a music education department was established. In 1953 the Vyšší Hudební Pedagogická Škola (High School of Music Education) was founded, from which the Státní Konzervatoř Hudby (State Conservatory of Music) developed in 1959. Musical activities have also been reflected by the Moravsko-slezský hudební věštnik (Moravian-Silesian Musical Bulletin, 1891) and the Moravské Hudební Noviny (Movarian Musical Newspaper 1909)


F.M. Hradil: Ostravsko v hudbě a zpěvu [The Ostrava region in music and singing] (Ostrava, 1941)

‘20 let Československého rozhlasu v Ostravě’ [20 years of Czechoslovak radio in Ostrava], Náš rozhlas, xxi (1949), 3–7

I. Stolařík and B. Štědroň: ‘K dějinám hudby v Ostravském kraji’ [On the history of music in the Ostrava region], Slezský sborník, liii (1955), 195–229

J. Schreiber: Hudební život na Ostravsku 1909–1959 [Musical life in the Ostrava region] (Ostrava, 1960)

V. Gregor: Dělnické pěvecké spolky na Ostravsku a v jiných průmyslových střediscich českých zemi [Workers' choirs in the Ostrava region and in other industrial centres in the Czech lands] (Ostrava, 1961)

E. Sýkorová, ed.: 40 let ostravského divadla 1919–1959 [40 years of theatre in Ostrava] (Ostrava, 1960)

60 let Státního divadla v Ostravě 1919–1979 [60 years of the State theatre in Ostrava] (Ostrava, 1979)


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