Prague Concert Life, 1850-1881

Person details

Jan Ludevít Lukes

Jan Ludvík Lukesle

Lukes, Jan Ludevít (1824-1906). Czech tenor singer. Studied law in Vienna but instead dedicated himself to the music profession as a singer, first in the town theatre in Olomouc (1853-54) and then engaged by the Estates Theatre opera in Prague (1854-57). In 1857 he temporarily retired from the stage. The Prague press at first speculated that he was to take up singing appointments abroad – for instance, Tagesbote aus Böhmen 9/4/1857 reported that he was leaving Prague and was contracted to make a guest appearance in Königsberg. Reports then appeared of his taking up a new contract in Prague – for instance, Tagesbote aus Böhmen 26/5/1857 remarked that its Czech sister-newspaper Pražské Noviny was relaying news that ‘Estates Theatre Director Stöger had negotiated with the tenor Mr Lukes to secure him for the Prague Estates Stage. This communication awaits only their official confirmation.’ These and other reports were unfounded – Lukes retired pro-temps to combine a life as a brewer and publican (he was owner of the brewery ‘U Reismannů’ from 1860) with select musical activities of his own volition, appearing in solo rôles in Prague concerts and founding his own male voice choir which in 1861 became the choral society Hlahol and of which he was the first director. He returned to the stage in 1864, was the first singer to perform the part of Dalibor in the opera of that name in 1868, and eventually retired in 1873. In 1875 he founded his own singing school in Prague. Tagesbote aus Böhmen 1/2/1857 reported his election as a honorary member of the Prague Society of Musical Artists.

Tagesbote aus Böhmen 4/9/1857 reported that Lukes had been appointed by the Director Hoffmann of the Thalia-Theater in Vienna to sing as a guest performer in Tannhäuser. Less than a month later it was related by Tagesbote aus Böhmen 1/10/1857 had returned [to Prague] from his Vienna singing trip. 

Events in which this person participated as a director of ensemble

Events in which this person participated as a singer

Events in which this person participated as a soloist