Conductors - Jan Šoupal

Jan Šoupal Jan Šoupal – ( 1892 - 1964 ), born in Vyškov, a sensitive artist and a man of rare character, was a prominent personality in the life of the PSMU.
What Vach was for Kroměříž, the same was Šoupal for Vyškov. He was a tireless organizer of the musical life in this town in the 20's. In 1931 he moved to Ostrava where he taught at various types of schools. In 1953 he was appointed professor at the Ostrava conservatoir. At the same time he led a number of singing choirs.
He entered the PSMU as a second tenor in 1917. When in 1932 Ferdinand Vach fell ill during a concert tour of Spain, Šoupal was charged with conducting a concert in the town of Manresa. Such a change of the conductor during a concert tour was rather risky ( the PSMU was already renowned even in Spain ), but Šoupal as a conductor proved such excellent musical qualities that it became clear that he could be a respectable successor to Vach. Thus in 1936 at a general meeting he was elected chief conductor of the PSMU.
Šoupal lived fully, with his whole heart, with and for the PSMU. Here he fulfilled his artistic mision. Under his leadership the choir achieved the greatest success and many international awards.
It was generally known that Šoupal had an absolute musical ear. A number of stories go around in connection with this fact. Once, a choir member was driving him home after a concert. Šoupal was slumbering on the back seat. Suddenly he woke up and shouted at the driver:
"Are you crazy? To drive as fast as that! It's might!" The driver tried to make up an excuse:" But I'm going only sixty." "Don't talk monsense", said Šoupal, "if it were sixty, I'd hear a "c" from the engine, but now I can hear an "e". The driver looked at the speedometer and it showed 100.

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