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.
Taking advantage of relative liberalisation at home, the young Václav Havel visited New York in the spring of 1968 for the US premiere of his second major play, The Memorandum. It was staged by the Public Theater, which had just had a huge hit with Hair and was headed by director Joseph Papp. He and his wife Gail Papp got to know Havel at that time – and later visited the then dissident at his country home in communist Czechoslovakia.
Rehearsal for Truth is a weeklong theatre festival dedicated to Václav Havel that gets underway in New York on Tuesday. Alongside plays and stage readings, it will also see the presentation of a human rights award and the unveiling of a new bust of the dissident turned president at Columbia University. I discussed the festival, which is focused on Central European theatre, with organiser Pavla Niklová of the Václav Havel Library Foundation.
The current director of Prague’s National Theatre, Jan Burian, is to get
a contract extension that will keep him in the post until 2025. The
minister of culture, Antonín Staněk, announced that Mr. Burian would
remain in the post for a second term at the launch of the National
Theatre’s new season on Monday.
Mr. Staněk said that the institution had made positive progress in the last five years, both in artistic terms and in carrying out strategic projects. Mr. Burian’s current contract runs out in 12 months’ time.
Actor and puppeteer Vít Hořejš was born in Czechoslovakia but spent most of his life in the United States, where he emigrated in his late twenties. He worked for the legendary Black Light Theatre before establishing his own Czechoslovak-American Marionette Theatre. The group, featuring puppets and live actors, performs contemporary pieces as well as plays based on traditional Czech fairy tales.
The head of the Czech Roman Catholic Church, Cardinal Dominik Duka, has
filed a lawsuit over a pair of theatre plays staged in Brno in May, the
newspaper Lidové noviny reported on Thursday. The joint production of the
plays Our Violence, Your Violence and The Curse included a scene in which
Jesus rapes a Muslim woman as well as a depiction of Pope John Paul II in a
state of tumescence.
Protests also took place at the theatre itself during the plays, which were directed by Oliver Frljic from Croatia.
Cardinal Duka says that the theatre show represented an attack on his rights guaranteed by the Charter of Fundamental Rights and Freedoms. He referred specifically to the inalienability of rights, freedom of religion and the right to dignity and honour. The prelate filed the lawsuit as a private individual.
A group of right-wing protestors who over the weekend disrupted a theatre performance of the controversial play by Croatian director Oliver Frljić have filed a criminal complaint against one of the lead actors as well as the director of the National Theatre in Brno for propagating religious intolerance and defamation of a state symbol. Two other complaints are also pending.
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