A new festival merging electronica music, contemporary theatre and dance with multimedia and visual arts is being held in the Czech capital this and next week. Entitled Spectaculare, the event brings some leading artists of these genres to Prague including Jon Hopkins from the UK and Nils Frahm from Germany. But the event also features several Czech artists and ensembles such as Clarinet Factory and Tantehorse.
The annual multi-discipline and multi-venue contemporary art festival called 4+4 Days in Motion begins in Prague this Friday. Now in its 18th year, the festival looks at some of the controversial and problematic topics surrounding the modern city, through dance and theater performances, an exhibition, public lectures and discussions. In today’s Arts, we speak to the festival’s producer, Markéta Černá, who talked about why they chose a vacant palace, situated on Wenceslas Square, as the main venue.
The Czech Centre London has prepared a special Czech Dance Showcase for the upcoming Edinburgh Fringe Festival. The showcase will present three highly acclaimed Czech contemporary dance groups, giving them a chance to show their stuff at the largest arts festival in the world. During her recent visit to Prague, I had a chance to speak to the director of Czech Centre London, Tereza Porybná, and began by asking her why they specifically chose contemporary dance as a medium to present Czech culture at the festival.
In today’s Arts my guest is the Berlin-based Canadian artist Rebecca Halls who goes by the stage name of Beka Hoop. Next week, Rebecca launches the second ever Hoopurbia, bringing together hoop dance performers from around the world. The first inception was held in industrial parts of Berlin; how will Prague compare?
Various activities are being prepared for celebrations in the run up to the Chinese New Year. Alongside a traditional dragon boat race on the Vltava River and a performance by Chinese singer Feng-yűn Song, Petra Lorenzová’s Kung Fu School in Prague is putting together the final touches for a performance at Palác Akropolis, a popular club in the city. I went along to one of the training sessions at the school on a Monday night to find out how things were coming together.
Well-known Czech folklorist Radomil Rejšek, the author of a number of key texts on traditional song and dance and teacher of folkloric traditions who influenced generations of young students, died on Thursday morning at the age of 83. Mr Rejšek was a co-founder and long-time member of the Joseph Vycpálek Ensemble of Song and Dance (Souboru písní a tanců Josefa Vycpálka). For his efforts on the international scene, Mr Rejšek received the highest recognition from the International Organisation of Folk Art – honorary membership. The news of Mr Rejšek’s death was released by Kazimír Jánoška, the editor-in-chief of Folklor magazine.
Some 400 members of the country’s Romany community on Saturday attended the a Romany pilgrimage at the Holly Hill near Olomouc in Moravia, one of Czech Catholics’ most scared sites. The event, held for the fourth time, included a procession to the top of the hill where a Romany priest served a mass in the Basilica of Virgin Mary, as well as performances by various folklore groups.
Moravian folklore musician Jan Rokyta died on Sunday at the age of 74, the news agency ČTK reported. Jan Rokyta, a native of Jasenná near Vizovice, in the east of the country, founded the cimbalom band Technik in 1958. He collaborated with Czech Radio for several decades, and organized a number of festivals and folklore events. His band recorded more than 40 albums including Pěsničky, or Songs, sung by the writer and former dissident Ludvík Vaculík.
On Saturday night Prague’s O2 arena will host the sixth annual Sensation dance music event held in the Czech Republic. Organizers are promising a splendid audio-visual show and seven DJs. The indoor electronic dance music event traditionally attended by dancers dressed exclusively in white originated in the Netherlands and has gained increasing popularity around the world. In past years it attracted as many as 17 thousand people to Prague’s O2 arena.
In today’s Spotlight we travel to South Moravia, to the town of Strážnice, the heart of the ethnographic region of Slovácko. The town is a traditional centre of regional ethnographic festivities. Today we take you to the Strážnice open-air folk museum featuring local village architecture and showing glimpses of life in the past centuries.
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