Komzak, Karel (1823 - 1893)

Bandmaster, conductor and composer. He established his own dance orchestra, the Komzak Ensemble, in Prague in 1854 and the musicians were invited to play at musical soirees and balls held on Strelecky Island, Zofin and elsewhere. Eighteen-year-old Dvorak joined the Komzak Ensemble as a viola player in 1859 after graduating from the organ school. Three years later the entire Komzak Ensemble was engaged as the core of the opera orchestra at the Provisional Theatre which had just opened. Komzak is said to have remembered his violist with fondness, stating that “The good Lord certainly made sure that Mr Dvorak received more than his fair share of talent”.