Leading representatives of the Czech cultural scene gathered at the
National Theatre in Prague on Monday to attend an official farewell
ceremony for actress and Charter 77 signatory Vlasta Chramostová, who died
this month at the age of 92. The event, which featured a number of speakers
including her former colleagues from the National Theatre, culminated with
a symbolic funeral procession exiting the building.
Mrs. Chramostová was an accomplished actress before her refusal to accept the Soviet invasion of Czechoslovakia in 1968 led to her losing the opportunity to perform in film, television and radio. During the normalisation era she was active in the country’s dissent and signed the Charter 77 protest document. For her activities in the service of human rights and democracy, Ms. Chramostová was awarded the Order of Tomáš Garrigue Masaryk by President Václav Havel in 1998.
Actor Ladislav Mrkvička and opera singer Gabriela Beňačková received
lifetime achievement awards at the Thálie theatre awards in Prague on
The Czech Theatre Academy also presented a new prize, for extraordinary contribution to the art of theatre, to Zdeněk Svěrák, who is also very famous for his screen roles. Both he and Mrkvička received standing ovations during the ceremony at the National Theatre.
Prizes were also awarded in many other categories during the annual event.
National Theatre artists, mainly opera singers, are threatening to strike if the newly appointed culture minister rejects their demand to open selection process to replace their current bosses and increase “transparency” at the institution. With some artistic licence – and apologies to Andrew Lloyd Webber – one could call this Act II of ‘The Phantom of the Czech Opera’.
The renowned Czech baritone Adam Plachetka launched his new CD on Wednesday. Called Winter Journey, the album contains his renditions of 24 poems set to music by Schubert. The opera singer also performed music from Don Giovanni to fully dressed people in bathtubs at the launch’s unusual venue – the rooftop of Prague’s Lucerna Palace. He explained all by phone.
Twelve young opera singers have advanced to the finals round of Plácido
Domingo's annual Operalia competition, now underway at the Czech
National Theatre in Prague.
The finalists, selected from 40 young singers from across the globe, will compete for prizes of up to USD 30,000 each in the final-round concert on Friday evening.
The general competition awards first, second and third prizes for male and female singers, while just two prizes are bestowed to a man and a woman in the zarzuela division.
Friday’s final-round concert will be live-streamed on medici.tv as well as via Operalia’s Facebook page, and will feature the finalists performing alongside an orchestra conducted by Domingo himself.
Prague’s week-long Zero Point Festival (Nultý bod), which showcases
provocative and unexplored dance and theatre genres, is celebrating its
It gets underway on Monday night with nine performances at Divadle v Celetné theatre that organiser say aim to shock and provoke the audience.
Among the most prominent guest of this year's edition is Canadian dancer and choreographer Dana Michel, whose piece Cutlass Spring explores boundaries of the human body and sexuality.
Among the Czech troupes is Tantehorse, who will perform a staging of an escape game focused on the lives of people living in the Czech border regions known as the Sudetenland.
The 18th edition of the annual Prague Fringe festival is set to start on Friday. Theatres, cafes and many other spaces in the Czech capital’s picturesque Malá Strana district will host a weeklong programme packed with events ranging from theatre to music. The festival is the brainchild of Scotsman Steve Gove, who has been based in the Czech capital since the 1990s. He says the relatively small size of the Prague Fringe is actually an advantage.
Cardinal Dominik Duka reportedly plans to appeal a Brno city court’s
rejection of his criminal complaint against local theatre groups over the
staging of a play by Croatian director Oliver Frljić.
At one point in the Frljić play in question, called “Our Violence, Your Violence”, an actor depicting Jesus rapes a Muslim woman. In another scene, a naked Muslim woman slowly pulls a bloody Czech national flag out of her vagina.
Cardinal Duka says the play, performed last year, amounted to an attack on his rights to freedom of religion, dignity and honour as guaranteed under the Charter of Fundamental Rights.
The Brno city court ruled that the scenes were allegorical and could not be seen as violating anyone’s individual rights. Czech Television reports Cardinal Duka plans to file an appeal with the Brno district court.
The regional court in Brno has rejected a complaint by the head of the
Czech Roman Catholic Church, Cardinal Dominik Duka regarding two theatre
plays staged in Brno in May of last year.
The plays Our Violence, Your Violence and The Curse, directed by Oliver Frljic from Croatia, included a scene in which Jesus rapes a Muslim woman, sparking protests from some of the locals who forced their way on stage and tried to stop the performance.
Cardinal Duka filed a lawsuit against the theatre on the grounds that the plays were an attack on his rights guaranteed by the Charter of Fundamental Rights such as the right to freedom of religion and the right to dignity and honour.
The judge said the scenes were allegorical and could not be seen as violating individuals' rights.
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