Dozens of music and theatre ensembles are performing at this year’s Mezi Ploty, or Within Fences, cultural festival at Prague's Bohnice psychiatric hospital. The annual festival which opens the doors of the city s main psychiatric hospital to the public aims raise awareness and understanding of mental illnesses, alcoholism and drug addiction and break the taboo surrounding these health problems. The festival is attended by the hospital’s leading psychiatrists who are giving lectures and taking questions from the public.
The popular Czech musician Petr Skoumal has died at the age of 76. A long-term collaborator, singer Michal Prokop, informed the Czech News Agency of his passing on Sunday. The Prague-born Skoumal, who had studied conducting, was widely known his songs for both adults and children and also wrote music for films by among others Zdeněk Svěrák and Ladislav Smoljak. Music journalist Jiří Černý described him as the most original Czech popular composer of the last 30 years.
In 1870, Antonín Dvořák, who was yet to become one of the world’s finest composers, wrote his first opera called Alfred. The piece was only performed once, in 1938, long after Dvořák’s death, and then fell into oblivion. Now, nearly seventy years after its first staging, Alfred lived to see its second premiere, this time with the original German libretto, as part of the Dvořák Prague festival.
Legendary American singer Tony Bennett performed in Prague on Saturday - just his second appearance in the capital. The last time was 17 years ago. Bennett, who turned 88 in August, has been touring across Europe; his next stop will be in Brussels. On Saturday, the 17 Grammy holder included signature tunes as well as classic jazz standards.
The first opera by Antonín Dvořák, Alfred, was performed for the first time ever with the original German libretto on Wednesday night at the Dvořák’s Prague festival, which is currently underway in the Czech capital. The Czech composer wrote the opera in 1870 at the age of 29. The piece was already performed once before, in 1938, with the libretto translated into Czech.
Over 80,000 people attended an open-air concert by the Czech rock band Kabát in Prague’s Vypich district on Saturday night. It was the biggest concert ever played in the capital by a Czech group. The show marked the 25th anniversary of the foundation of Kabát, who in recent years have become one of the most popular bands in the country. Their previous koncert at Vypich five years ago was attended by 60.000 people.
The music ensemble GINEVRA specializes in early music, drawing on Irish and Scottish melodies and composing their own songs inspired by local legends. The group’s name harks back to the days of King Arthur, Queen Ginevra and the Knights of the Round Table and their performances at Czech castles and chateaus bring history to life for hundreds of appreciative visitors.
Some 17,000 people saw an open-air performance of the opera The Devil and Kate by Antonín Dvořák’s in Prague on Saturday. Performed by the ensemble of the National Theatre and Prague Chamber ballet, the opera was staged at an amphitheatre in Divoká Šárka, a nature reserve in the capital north-western outskirts. Operas were first performed there in the early 20th century, and the tradition was revived in 2005.
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