In 1872, he graduated from the Prague Organ School, after which he enrolled in the Libensk piano academy, graduating in 1875. From 1878 he managed the Smolensk branch of the Russian Musical Society, becoming second conductor at the Kharkov Opera in 1880, and the principal conductor at the Lvov opera in 1882. After turning down the post of director at the Lvov Conservatory, he held conducting posts in Kiev, Tiflis and Moscow (with Ippolit Pryanishnikov's Opera Company from 1889 to 1893), before taking up the post of principal conductor at the Odessa Opera Theatre in 1894. He also taught as a professor at the Odessa Conservatory from 1919.
His compositions included two suites for orchestra, a piano trio, quartet, quintet and sonata, and various works for voices and piano.
Correspondence with Tchaikovsky
One letter from Tchaikovsky to Josef Přibík has survived, dating from 1893, and has been translated into English on this website:
2 letters from Přibík to the composer, dating from 1893, are preserved in the Tchaikovsky State Memorial Musical Museum-Reserve at Klin (a4, Nos. 3676–3677).