Hello and welcome to this month’s edition of Music Profile. Today, we’re leafing through the back catalogue of Václav Neckář – who you might know better for his acting than for his singing. Neckář can boast a string of number one albums in this country, spanning a period of over forty years, and he’s got an Oscar to boot. For what? Find out in Music Profile.
The One World (Jeden Svět) festival of human rights documentaries has established itself as one of the most interesting events on the Czech Republic’s cultural calendar, and the biggest festival of its kind in Europe. This year, to mark its 10th anniversary, One World (run by the NGO People in Need) is organising mini festivals in 10 cities around the world – including New York. At the opening at the city’s (under renovation) Bohemian National Hall on Monday night, I spoke to organiser Tereza Porybná.
Dudy is the Czech word for the bagpipes and Call of Dudy is the title of a documentary film focused on the Bohemian piping tradition. Featuring lots of great music and interesting interviews, it takes viewers to the instrument’s traditional strongholds in south and west Bohemia, and over the border into Bavaria.
Steve Lichtag, 54, is a respected Czech-American filmmaker who has travelled the world mapping everything from activity on coral reefs to the life of the Blue Whale. But most famously, the director captured what it’s like to swim with the ocean’s most feared predator – the Great White Shark – a creature any sane person would try their hardest to avoid. Not Lichtag: if there’s anything he enjoys, he made clear in a recent Radio Prague interview taped safely on dry land, it’s adventure. And when it comes to that, what better place to find it than
Thursday night sees the opening of the Febiofest film festival. Between now and next Thursday audiences in Prague will be able to choose from nearly three hundred films from all over the world. The festival will then travel outside Prague to eight other Czech and Moravian towns. Febiofest takes place at Prague’s Village cinemas at Anděl and when people have had enough of watching films they can enjoy a number of accompanying music programmes. Earlier today, I met the festival’s spokesman Pavel Sladký and asked him to tell me about the history of
The latest film by the Czech director Bohdan Sláma Venkovský Učitel – Country Teacher – opened at cinemas around the Czech Republic on Thursday. In keeping with its creator’s previous pictures, Venkovský Učitel is a naturalistic and poignant drama. But the love triangle at its centre is rather unusual in the context of Czech cinema.
‘Limonádový Joe’ (Lemonade Joe) is a cult sixties Czech western cum musical about a lemonade salesman in the Wild West. The film started life as column in a newspaper written by Jiří Brdečka during the war, before becoming a theatre play, and then finally the all-singing, all-dancing, film production Czechs know and love today. Tereza Brdečková is a film critic and the daughter of Jiří Brdečka, the man who conceived the movie:
One of the legends of Czech theatre, the actor Radovan Lukavský, died on Monday at the age of 88. Lukavský’s renown was largely built on such performances as his 1960s Hamlet at the National Theatre, though many Czechs will remember him for his part in a 1970s TV adaptation of a novel by Alois Jirásek. Ruth Fraňková looks back at the life of one of the all-time great Czech actors.
This week in Mailbox: the beneficial properties of sea water once again, the Barrandov film studios in Prague, an Oscar for Czech musician Markéta Irglová, the 30th anniversary of Czech cosmonaut Vladimír Remek’s flight into space. Listeners quoted: Robert Fraser, Howard Barnett, Stephen Hrebenach, Thomas Kuca.
It’s Wednesday night and Kino Aero in Prague’s Žižkov district is swarming with people. Despite it’s slightly run down interior and uncomfortable creaky chairs this small cinema has become a legendary venue here in Prague and people don’t mind spending the extra twenty minutes or so that it takes to get here from the city centre. Kino Aero has just recently celebrated ten years of its existence and I went to meet its manager Ivo Andrle to find out what exactly it is that makes the place so special:
Archaeologists unearth seven graves dating back to Great Moravian Empire
“Einstein in Bohemia” – Part II: how alienation in ‘half-barbaric’ Prague led him to a new theory of gravity, eventual love of a free Czechoslovakia
“Einstein in Bohemia” – part 1: how a Prague sojourn sparked his theory of general relativity, journey of self-discovery
Valentine’s Day 1945 - When the Americans bombed Prague
Film about tragic fate of great Czech actress highlights communist atrocities in the 1950s