Dora Pejačević – The most important female composer of Croatian music history
Open lecture by Zdenka Weber, PhD, musicologist and diplomat.
Dora Pejačević is considered one of the major Croatian composers, and certainly the most important female composer. She left a considerable catalogue of 58 opuses (106 compositions), mostly in late-Romantic style, including songs, piano works, chamber music, and several compositions for large orchestra, arguably her best pieces. Her Symphony in F-sharp minor is considered to be the first Croatian modern symphony. Most of her music is yet to be published.
Dora Pejačević (10 September 1885 – 5 March 1923, in old documents also Pejacsevich) was born in Budapest, a daughter of Croatian ban, Hungarian-Croatian Count Teodor Pejačević and Hungarian Baroness Lilla Vay de Vaya, herself a fine pianist. Dora began to compose when she was 12. As a child of a nobleman she did not visit public schools so she studied music privately in Zagreb, Dresden and Munich and received lessons in instrumentation (from Dragutin Kaiser and Walter Courvoisier), composition from Percy Sherwood, and violin lessons from Henri Petri in Munich.
About Zdenka Weber, PhD: Zdenka Weber (Varaždin, June 17th 1950) is Croatian musicologist, music publicist, diplomat, lecturer and pedagogue. She has worked at the Academy of Music in Zagreb, the Berlin German Opera (Deutsche Oper Berlin) and has served as a diplomat at the Croatian Embassies in Berlin and Vienna for 19 years. She has thought music history at the Zagreb Academy of Music, Department of Pedagogy at the Osijek University, Hochschule für Musik Hanns Eisler in Berlin and has been guest lecturer at the universities in Łódz, Poland, and Pamplona, Spain. Zdenka Weber has also worked at the State Institute for Music Research at Preußischer Kulturbesitz in Berlin.
Zdenka Weber published three musicological books and more then 3500 articles, music critics as well as musicological articles in Croatia and abroad and has received important Croatian, French, Austrian and German awards for her work.