The Prague Spring International Music Festival is an annual event that showcases some of the best classical music from both Czech and international composers. Since its beginning in 1946, it has become one of the leading festivals of its kind in the world, and a galaxy of stars such as Herbert von Karajan and Arthur Rubinstein have appeared at the event down through the years. An opening cemetery was held at Prague's Vysehrad cemetery on Wednesday to mark the start of this year's event.
Once again it's time for the Prague Spring International Music Festival - one of Central Europe's major musical events - now in its 59th year. The festival always opens with Bedrich Smetana's patriotic masterpiece, My Country, this year performed by the Prague Symphony Orchestra, under the baton of the Czech émigré conductor, Jiri Kout. With just two days left till the festival begins, I continue a Radio Prague tradition of recent years, by talking to the festival director, Roman Belor about some of the highlights of the festival.
Tony Duchacek and his band Garaz (Garage) have now been a staple on the Czech underground music scene for more than twenty years. Like their more well-known counterparts, the Plastic People of the Universe, with whom they collaborated at length artistically, Duchacek and his band-mates continue to play Prague's most interesting rock venues: drawing fans old and new, among them kids who can barely remember the days of communism, and are just out to have a good time, to listen to some driving music and ska-like sax. You can dance to it on the darkened
In today's One on One Jan's guest is Gail Whitmore a mezzo soprano from New York, whose career that has taken her around Europe and eventually brought her to the Czech Republic. Here she's moved on to other things, like co-hosting her own English language radio show and recently clinching the title of national karaoke champion.
The Largo from Dvorak's New World Symphony is one of the most famous themes in the history of music. It's a piece of music that you will probably recognize even if you've never listened to classical music in your life. The New World has been adapted a thousand times - the Largo has reincarnations as a gospel song, a bagpiper's dream, a jazz band tune, even as the theme in the very quirky Ken Russell film "Crimes of Passion" with Kathleen Turner as a prostitute. Meanwhile in Japan the New World is so popular that it is almost considered part of
In this week's Encore we're going to be talking about a fascinating late eighteenth century Czech composer, who led a colourful life in various European cities: Jan Ladislav Dusik, also known as Dussek. He was born in 1760 not far from Prague, and in a life that spanned fifty-two years he worked in Amsterdam, Hamburg, Saint Petersburg, Paris, London, and even Lithuania. At the time his compositions were extremely popular.
This Thursday the English rock band British Sea Power - who have an affection for all things Czech - are playing a concert at the Roxy club in Prague at which they will be launching a new single that will only be available in the Czech Republic. The song "A Lovely Day Tomorrow/Zitra Bude Krasny Den" appears in both English and Czech on the limited edition release, with both versions sung by Katerina Winterova of the Czech band Ecstasy of St Theresa.
Regular listeners will know this is the Year of Czech Music. One of the highlights of the year will be celebrations to mark the 100th anniversary of the death of perhaps the most famous Czech composer of all, Antonin Dvorak. The anniversary falls on May 1, though events are already taking place, among them the Dvorak Nelahozeves Festival, which got underway recently. David Vaughan spoke to Jakub Puchalsky from Unilever, one of the sponsors of the festival, and asked him why it was being held in the small town of Nelahozeves, just north of
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