O The Prague Symphony Orchestra
The Prague Symphony Orchestra was founded in the autumn of 1934 by the conductor Rudolf Pekárek. He defined the new ensemble’s fields of activity with the words Film-Opera-Koncert, and such the abbreviation FOK became part of the orchestra’s title. By recording music for the majority of Czech films in the 1930s and performing regularly in live broadcasts on the Czechoslovak Radio, the FOK Orchestra made a name for itself and its economic existence was assured. This allowed the gradual development of regular concerts, whose main promoter from the very beginning was Dr. Václav Smetáček.
Within a very short time Dr. Smetáček managed to build the orchestra into a large symphonic ensemble, challenging the standards of its strong domestic competition. In 1942 he became the orchestra’s chief conductor and he stood as its head for a full thirty years. During the period of his leadership the orchestra achieved a high performance standard and international renown.