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Karel Svoboda was born in Prague, Czechoslovakia (now Prague, Czech Republic) and began his career as a pop composer after stopping studying medicine in his third year of university. He became a member of the rock band "Mefisto" in the 1950s. Later, he composed music for the Laterna Magica theatre in Prague and for many Czech singers. In 1969 he wrote Lady Carneval for Karel Gott, a major Czech pop star. Svoboda wrote a total of 80 songs for him.
Svoboda composed TV scores for the German channel ZDF for over 30 years. He wrote the scores to many TV series in the 1970s that a whole generation of Europeans grew up with. Some examples of these TV series are Vicky the Viking, Maya the Bee and The Wonderful Adventures of Nils.
Svoboda wrote scores for almost 90 films and TV series.