František Alois Drdla (Germanized as Franz Drdla; 28 November 1868 – 3 September 1944) was a prominent Czech concert violinist and composer of light music.
Drdla was born in 1868 in Žďár nad Sázavou, in what is now the Czech Republic. He studied violin and composition first at the Prague Conservatory and later at the Vienna Conservatory where his teachers were Josef Hellmesberger, Jr. for violin, Anton Bruckner for music theory and Franz Krenn for composition. However, Drdla's music shows none of his teacher's influence. From 1890 to 1893 he played violin in the orchestra of the Vienna Court Opera, and from 1894 to 1899 he pursued his career as the director and concertmaster of the Theater an der Wien. By then a well-known concert violinist, Drdla toured throughout Europe (1899–1905) and later the United States (1923–1925). Drdla enjoyed a good reputation as a violinist with a technically refined tone. In 1927 he received an honorary title from the President of Austria. Drdla died in Bad Gastein, Austria in 1944.
Although he composed three operettas, a violin concerto, several orchestral works and two piano trios, international fame came to Drdla as a result of composing lighter music in the late romantic style. These works generally mixed popular Bohemian (Czech) or Hungarian melodies and presented them à la viennoise. Among the best known of such works are Souvenir (1904), Vision (1906) and Hey, Hay! (1908) written for violin with piano. Hey, Hay! became popular in more than a dozen different versions including those for orchestra, piano quintet, and string quartet. Drdla's compositions were popularized by violinists Jan Kubelík, Marie Hall, Mischa Elman, Joseph Szigeti, Váša Příhoda and others. Text source : Wikipedia (Hide extended text) ... (Read all)