Czech Waits

Simon Reicha, Town Piper of Prague

The Bohemian-born composer Anton Reicha (1770-1836) was father of the wind quintet; the ensemble of flute, oboe, clarinet, bassoon, and French horn. Reicha’s father, Simon, was the town piper of Prague – this was a paid municipal position that required the piper to climb the town tower at various times of day to announce the hour by tootling. He died when his son was one year old.