Alois Göbl (1841–1907)

Personal secretary to Prince Kamil Rohan, sponsoring commissioner of his Sychrov and Semily estates, an excellent amateur musician, and baritone. During his visits to Prague he was in frequent contact with Karel Bendl, through whom he became acquainted with Dvořák. They developed a close friendship, testimonies of which are the copious correspondence between them, Dvořák’s frequent visits to Sychrov castle, and also the fact that the composer named his youngest daughter after his friend (Aloisie). Dvořák welcomed Göbl’s hospitality when he was writing as well: it was at Sychrov that he worked, for example, on his Violin Concerto in A minor and his opera Dimitrij. Several of Dvořák’s short sacred works were given their premieres in the Sychrov chapel, performed by Alois Göbl and Anna Dvořáková: Ave Maria, Hymn to the Most Holy Trinity, Ave maris stella and O sanctissima