Born on September 19th 1841 in today´s Czech Republic, Antonín Dvořák was regarded by his contemporaries as a kind of composing "nature boy" - inspired, unacademic and drawing directly from the sources of Czech and Slavic folklore, he ranks along with Bedřich Smetana as a founder of a Czech national musical style. With his vocal duets: "Songs of Moravia", Dvořák achieved his breakthrough as a composer. There followed extended travels to England and a period of residence in America, where Dvořák was asked to give Americans a hand in getting started with a musical tradition of their own. His best-known work to this day, the Symphony No. 9, subtitled "From the New World" was written toward that end. Dvořák died on May 1st 1904 in Prague.