Iva Bittova

Iva Bittova

Czech avant-garde violinist, singer and composer
Date of Birth: 07.1958Год
Country: Czech

  1. Biography of Iva Bittová
  2. Early Life and Career
  3. Breakthrough and Solo Career
  4. Later Career and Personal Life

Biography of Iva Bittová

Iva Bittová is a Czech avant-garde violinist, singer, and composer known for her unique blend of rock and Eastern European sound. She refers to this combination as her "personal folk music". Born on July 22, 1958, in Bruntál, Czech Silesia, Czechoslovakia (now the Czech Republic), Bittová is the second of three daughters to musician parents. Her father, Koloman Bitto, was a renowned musician of Hungarian-Romani origin from southern Slovakia. He played the guitar, trumpet, and lute in folk and classical ensembles. Her mother, Ludmila Bittová, sang in a professional vocal group.

Iva Bittova

Early Life and Career

During her childhood, Bittová took ballet and violin lessons in Opava and played child roles in Zdeněk Nejedlý's Silesian Theatre. Her family moved to Brno in 1971, where she temporarily lost interest in music and focused on studying dramatic arts at the Brno Conservatory. For the next ten years, Bittová dedicated herself solely to acting, appearing in several films and participating in radio dramas.

Iva Bittova

In the early 1980s, Bittová returned to music and began studying the violin under the guidance of Rudolf Štástný, a professor at the Janáček Academy of Music in Brno. Continuing her education, she underwent vocal training and quickly developed her unique singing and violin playing style. In 1985, she collaborated with percussionist Pavel Fajt from the Czech rock band "Dunaj" and recorded the album "Bittová + Fajt," a mixture of alternative rock with Slavic and Romani influences.

Iva Bittova

Breakthrough and Solo Career

Bittová released several solo mini-albums in 1986 and sang in the art/alternative rock band "Dunaj" for several years. Her career breakthrough came in 1987 when she and Fajt released their second collaborative album, "Svatba," which gained international recognition through the "Review Records" label. The album's success caught the attention of English percussionist Chris Cutler from "Recommended Records," who introduced the reissued album "Bittová + Fajt" to the international scene.

Iva Bittova

The talented duo also caught the interest of English avant-garde guitarist Fred Frith, resulting in Bittová and Fajt being featured in the 1990 documentary film "Step Across the Border." Bittová released her first full-length solo album, "Iva Bittová," in 1991, followed by "River of Milk," her first release in the United States. In 1997, she began experimenting with classical music, performing in a series of concerts and recording the double album "Bílé Inferno" with Vladimir Václavek.

Later Career and Personal Life

The success of "Bílé Inferno" established Václavek and Bittová as leading figures in the "Čikori" association, which brought together improvisational musicians. Bittová collaborated with several internationally renowned avant-garde musicians, including Fred Frith, Chris Cutler, and Tom Cora, and performed solo concerts worldwide. She resided in Lelekovice, near Brno, with her two sons, Matouš and Antonín, and currently lives with Antonín in Rhinebeck, New York.

In addition to her successful music career, Bittová occasionally appears in films. In 2003, she portrayed Zena in the Oscar-nominated romantic drama "Zelary." In 2007, she played the lead role of Julia in the drama film "Tajnosti." Bittová's music is a fusion of rock and Eastern European sound, with her violin playing incorporating various techniques, including plucking the strings similar to playing the banjo. Her vocal range spans from traditional singing techniques to lively chirping and throat singing.