Leading Czech violinist Pavel Šporcl celebrates 50th birthday

Pavel Šporcl

This week marked the 50th birthday of one of Czechia’s best-known violinists. Pavel Šporcl, often recognised for his signature head-scarf, has had a rich career filled with both domestic and international successes. He has performed with renowned singers and orchestras such as Karel Gott, Vojtěch Dyk, Ewa Farna, the Prague Philharmonic, the Tokyo Metropolitan Symphony Orchestra, or France’s Orchestre national.

Pavel Šporcl | Photo: Jiřina Šmídová,  Czech Radio

Pavel Šporcl was born in the South Bohemian metropolis of České Budějovice on April 25, 1973. He took part in many competitions during his childhood and his teacher was the legendary Václav Snitl a highly accomplished soloist who was himself trained by preceding Czech violin great Jaroslav Kocian as well as the modernist composer Vítězslav Novák. Šporcl also studied in the United States, for example at Brooklyn College and the Juilliard School in New York.

Pavel Šporcl | Photo: Jiřina Šmídová,  Czech Radio

During the early 1990s he took part in several international competitions and subsequently received the Bohuslav Martinů award in 1996. Šporcl was not just a highly accomplished violinist in his own right, but one who managed to break through into the mainstream and become popular among the general public. In Czechia, he is well known for performing at televised events and for being a poster boy for many an orchestral concerts.  However, the man with the pirate scarf has also achieved great acclaim on the international scene through his talent and hard work, whether it be, for example, by performing with the Royal Liverpool Philharmonic Orchestra, selling out concerts in Japan or touring in the US.

In 2015, the same year when he received Czechia’s Medal of Merit, a documentary film was made about Šporcl that aired on the country’s main public broadcaster Czech Television, titled Pavel Šporcl - život mezi tóny (Pavel Šporcl – life between the tones). The musician also presented Moje houslové legendy (My music legends), his own series on Czech Television that profiled famous Czech violinists and their influence on domestic and international music.