> Silverfin and I once visited the cemetery in Vsyherad (spelling pls
> Alan???) in Prague where Smetana is buried and someone else famous
> whose name escapes me for the moment. It's a gorgeous place - right
> up on top of this huge hill overlooking the river Vltava and the city.
> Well worth the trek and the nasty hike up the hill.
> And the last time I was driving around Austria on a business trip I
> stopped at the little cemetery in Heiligenkreuz where Baroness Maria
> Vetsera is buried. (You know, the one who was in the suicide pact with
> Crown Prince Rudolf?) I've always had a bit of a Mayerling
> fascination and love the ballet they made of it. Did no-one ever
> think to write an opera about it?
> Oops - this thread is rapidly digressing onto the cheerful topic of
> favourite cemeteries people have visited !!!!
> Mrs T xx
Vysehrad in Prague. There are many famous Czech's there including
poets, painters, sculptors...and musicians.
Also buried there are Dvorak, Kubelik and (on topic) the singer Emmy
Vysehrad is, of course, the opening movement of Smetana's Ma Vlast. I
have stood before the Smetana memorial and, in my head, heard the harp
solo which opens the work (and almost did the counting).
When Elizabeth and I were younger we hiked up into the mountains and
stood before one of the tiny tributaries of the Vltava river (about a
foot wide) gurgling it's way down the mountainside. There are two
tributaries and that is why two flutes start Vltava (2nd flute gets the
first two bars). We have looked down on St John's Rapids although
we've never been brave enough to shoot over them in a canoe as many do.
It seemed nicer than the actuality. Smetana died alone, completely
deaf, his mind gone, locked in a tiny cell in the Prague "Lunatic
Asylum" in May 1884, aged 60.
He was too deaf to hear a note of Ma Vlast. But I have often been to
Vysehrad. I think anyone who can be bothered to write Elegante under a
single note for the triangle or, later, Quasi Campanella (Like a little
bell) deserves a moment or two of my time.
Overall, more dignity in the cemetery we thought.....
Alan M. Watkins
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