The District Court of Plzeň has convicted 42-year-old opera tenor Robert Šícho to 10 years imprisonment for the attempted murder of a colleague. The court heard that on November 28 of 2008, under the pretext of a concert together, Mr Šícho had been driving his would-be victim, also an opera singer, to the western town of Mariánské Lázně, when he pulled the rented vehicle over and attempted to strangle him with a chord. The victim was able to release himself and telephone the police. Mr Šícho has maintained his innocence throughout, and intends to appeal the decision.
My guest today in One on One is concert pianist and director of the Prague Radio Symphony Orchestra Jan Simon. Simon has studied with some of the great pianists including compatriot Ivan Moravec in Prague and the Uruguayan-born Homero Francesch in Zurich. He also trained in Berlin before becoming the youngest ever soloist in residence of the Prague Radio Symphony Orchestra in 1994. When I met him to bask in the sun on his balcony, Jan Simon started by telling me about his musical family background:
Around 40,000 people are expected to attend a concert by Madonna in Prague on Thursday night. The American pop singer is promoting her most recent album Sticky and Sweet. She has made one previous appearance in the Czech capital, three years ago. Madonna is set to perform on a green area in the Chodov district of Prague which has not previously been used as a concert venue. Traffic restrictions have been imposed in the area.
US pop star Madonna arrived in Prague on Wednesday where she’ll be giving a concert within her Sticky and Sweet European tour. Madonna is staying at Prague’s Mandarin Oriental Hotel and no details have been released of her private programme. Her concert on Thursday on the outskirts of Prague is expected to attract some 40,000 people from the Czech Republic and surrounding countries. The most expensive tickets have been sold out, but standing-room tickets are still available. This will be Madonna’s third concert in the Czech capital.
Czech jazz singer Eva Pilarová turned 70 on Sunday, with a concert that marks close to half a century on stage. Four times winner of the Golden Nightingale award Pilarová has performed just about every genre and recorded dozens of solo albums, favouring jazz and swing. She was a member of the famous Semafor and Rokoko theatres and in the course of her long career has sung with the likes of Jiří Suchý and Jiri Šlitr, Waldemar Matuška and Karel Gott.
Iva Bittová is a phenomenon in contemporary Czech music – the avant-garde violinist, singer and composer has developed a music style all her own, blending the music of many cultures into what she terms her "personal folk music“ and drawing deeply on her emotions and the sounds of nature. Her vocal utterances range from traditional singing to chirping, moaning, yelps and deep throat noises that keep audiences mesmerized. Her style is not easily defined but perhaps one of the most accurate comments made about her is that she brings the human voice
Today in Mailbox: we find out the answer to the July competition question and announce its winners. We quote from the answers by the following listeners: Hans Verner Lollike, Colin Preston, Debakamal Hazarika, Jayanta Chakrabarty, Colin Law, Constantin Liviu Viorel, S. J. Agboola, Tracy Andreotti, Henrik Klemetz, David Eldridge, Charles Konecny.
Instead of vespers, it was bands such as Health and Final Fantasy’s music reverberating around Kutná Hora’s Jesuit College on Thursday evening. Over the next couple of days, the building, its spires and courtyard, will be playing host to an impressive selection of alternative bands from around the world, all in the name of the Creepy Teepee music festival. Štěpán Bolf is one of its organizers:
Jan’s guest in One on One is the world-famous conductor and composer Carl Davis. Mr Davis, who has composed hundreds of scores for TV and film, recently appeared in Prague to conduct the Czech National Symphony Orchestra. Jan caught up with the conductor at Prague’s Obecní Dům to discuss his remarkable career as well as Czech connections: writing the scores for films like the French Lieutenant’s Woman and series like The World at War. The first thing he asked Carl Davis about was whether he knew early on that film and television would play such
The Prague Proms international music festival ends at the city’s Municipal House on Sunday with a “space night”. The closing concert features the Czech National Symphony Orchestra conducted by Libor Pešek performing Holst’s The Planets accompanied by a video projection. The fifth annual Prague Proms got underway on July 17 and has, according to organisers, been almost completely sold out.
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