Even if you have never heard of the Czech artist Alfons Mucha, you will almost certainly have seen his work. He is probably the defining artist of the Art Nouveau period at the turn of the 19th and 20th centuries, and the wonderfully lush and expressive posters he designed in Paris - most famously of the actress Sarah Bernhardt - have been reproduced many times the world over. Today Alfons Mucha's works are in the loving care of his grandson John and daughter-in-law, Geraldine Mucha, here in Prague. Geraldine is an accomplished and internationally
Every year at the beginning of summer the East-Bohemian town of Litomysl commemorates its famous native, the composer Bedrich Smetana, and in his honour organizes an international opera festival - Smetana's Litomysl. Even though Smetana's family moved out of Litomysl as early as 1831 when he was only seven, Litomysl locals are very proud of their most famous citizen and celebrated him already during his life. Later, after his death, Litomysl always made a point of commemorating the anniversary of his birth. On the occasion of the 125th anniversary
The 150-member Boston Gay Men's Chorus is one of New England's largest and most successful choirs. It has broken ground in affirming the positive image of the gay community in the United States, and is now on a tour of Europe. After highly successful concerts in Berlin and then Wroclaw in Poland, the chorus is now in Prague, where they will be singing in one of city's great concert venues. In Catholic Poland their concert was preceded by noisy anti-gay protests, so when he met up with the chorus's executive director, Steven Smith, Radio Prague's
The great Czech composer Bedrich Smetana was born in Litomysl, a picturesque town in the Bohemian-Moravian borderlands. Since 1949 - 125 years after Smetana's birth - Litomysl has been hosting an annual opera festival in his honour. Radio Prague's Martin Mikule is in the town for this year's Smetanova Litomysl and joins me on the phone now. Martin what are some of the highlights of this year's festival?
In today's 2nd part of a special two-part One on One we continue our discussion with Michal Horacek - one of the Czech Republic's most successful lyricists, whose work over the years transformed the Czech music scene. Long before he became a prominent song writer Michal Horacek went through a number of different professions: journalist, author, and, amazingly, horse-race bookie. We begin today's interview with Michal Horacek describing those who occupied the so-called demimonde.
Earlier this week the British pop legend Elton John entertained thousands of fans with a concert in Prague. But it was not his first concert here. He sang in the Czech capital way back in 1984 in the days of deepest communism. Back than the concert organizers were most disturbed when he put his legs up on the piano. At the time the western performers only rarely played behind the iron curtain.
Michal Horacek is one of the Czech Republic's most prominent lyricists, a man who has worked with so many top musicians his CV reads like a Who's Who list: Petr Hapka, Hana Hegerova, Michal Kocab, Richard Muller and others. His work transformed the Czech music scene from the 1980s onwards. But, Michal Horacek has not just been successful as a songwriter. He has by turns been a journalist, an author, the owner of an extremely successful betting agency, and, most recently, the chairman of the jury for the 2nd edition of "Cesko hleda superstar" -
Many fans of world music will already be familiar with the work of Vera Bila - one of the Czech Republic's finest Romany singers - who regularly tours major venues around the world: classic concerts have included Paris, New York, and Singapore. Now, Bila - and her group Kale - have released a new album. It has the French title "c'est comme ca" - "that's how it is" and from the first notes there is no mistaking the deep and earthy voice that made this Gypsy diva known worldwide.
The Czech Association of Singers, Songwriters and Musicians, SAI, which has a few hundred members and is supported by several thousand artists around the country was formed in 1989 to promote all forms of music and protect the rights of artists in the Czech Republic. On Sunday, its board held its annual meeting to assess the current state of the Czech music scene, especially a new copyright law that came into effect this year.
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