Milan Škampa, a member of the Smetana Quartet, died
On 14th April, Milan Škampa, the acclaimed violist and a member of the Smetana Quartet, died at the age of 89. Milan Škampa was born in 1928 in Prague into a family of musicians. First of all he studied violin and became a soloist of the Czech Radio Orchestra at the age of 16. A few years later he switched to playing the viola and joined the internationally renowned Smetana Quartet in 1956. The Smetana Quartet was for the period of 43 years one of the world’s leading ensembles. Its superb performances were captured on more than 150 gramophone records, the ensemble gave thousands of concerts in some sixty countries throughout Europe, America and Asia, and was repeatedly invited to the most prestigious festivals and recording studios. At the end of the sixties, Milan Škampa became a professor at the Academy of Performing Arts in Prague. He was esteemed as a great connoisseur of Janáček's music.