Jan Hřímalý

Tchaikovsky Research
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Jan Hřímalý (1844–1915) in a 1911 portrait by Mikhail Shemyakin

Czech violinist (b. 13 April 1844 [N.S.] in Plzeň; d. 11/24 January 1915 in Moscow); known in Russia as Ivan Voytsekhovich Grzhimali (Иван Войцеховнч Гржимали).

The second son of the organist Vojtěch Hřímalý (1809–1880), Jan studied violin at the Prague Conservatory (1855–1861), and went on to become leader of the Amsterdam Orchestra (1862–1868). In 1869, he was appointed violin teacher at the Moscow Conservatory, where in 1874 he succeeded his father-in-law Ferdinand Laub as professor of violin studies.

It was at the conservatory that he became acquainted with Tchaikovsky. He also played at the premieres of Tchaikovsky's String Quartet No. 1 (1871), String Quartet No. 2 (1874), String Quartet No. 3 (1876) and the Piano Trio (1882), and was leader of the Russian Musical Society Orchestra in Moscow from 1874 until 1906.

Correspondence with Tchaikovsky

No letters from Tchaikovsky to Jan Hřímalý are known, but one letter from Hřímalý to the composer, dating from 1884, is preserved in the Tchaikovsky State Memorial Musical Museum-Reserve at Klin ((a4, No. 645).

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