The Cirkus totality (or Totalitarian Circus) was one of the cultural projects chosen to accompany the Czech Republic’s EU presidency. As part of the project, a new textbook about Central Europe’s communist past has been written, there will be a series of plays and performances staged, and a giant ‘communism timeline’ has been unveiled on Prague’s náměstí Republiky. I went along to have a look:
The studio Bratři v triku, or “Brothers in T-Shirts”, has been the major producer of Czech animated film since the 1940s. Virtually every talent in Czech cartooning has gone through the studio, and it has won essentially every national and international award available to animators. But most importantly perhaps, the work of the studio has influenced generation after generation of Eastern Europeans and audiences elsewhere in the world as well. In this week’s Arts, Christian Falvey takes a peek into the cradle of Czech animation.
A novel theatre production where poetry meets drama, original music and modern ballet has just opened in Prague. Additionally, the big draw for many audiences coming to Posedlost, or Obsession, will be the continued transformation of one of the Czech Republic’s leading actresses, Tatiana Vilhelmová, into a popular and accomplished dancer. Christian Falvey was at the show’s premiere.
Czech bluegrass has a long tradition going back to the 1960s but it took several more decades before it was acknowledged in the land of its origin, the United States. Our guest in this edition of One on One is Robert Křesťan, the banjoist, lead singer and the founder of a bluegrass legend, the band Druhá Tráva, formed in the early 1990s. Their latest album Dylanovky, features songs by Bob Dylan translated into Czech by Robert Křesťan, and he and his band set the scene before the public speech of the US President, Barack Obama at Prague Castle earlier
“Patience with God”, a new book by Tomáš Halík, a Catholic priest and a renowned Czech theologian, has been put out by the US publisher Doubleday and hit the bookshelves in English-speaking countries around the world. A reflection on faith and atheism, “Patience with God” will be officially launched at the seat of the UN in New York on Tuesday. Radio Prague spoke to Mr Halík about some of the issues he deals with in his latest work.
Comic books and graphic novels have increased greatly in popularity in the Czech Republic over the last ten years, which saw release of both mainstream and avant garde titles, both classic as well as lesser-known authors. On the domestic scene artists also began to emerge, writers such as Jaroslav Rudiš and illustrators like Jaroslav 99, who collaborated on the celebrated graphic novel White Brook. In today’s Arts, another Czech duo: screenwriters Džian Baban and Vojtěch Mašek, authors of a phantasmagoric trilogy focusing on the adventures and
Czech bishops have criticized a new translation of the Bible that came out last week. Entitled the Bible – a 21st century translation, its ambition is to present Biblical texts in contemporary language easily comprehensible to the broad public. But Czech bishops point out that the new translation cannot be used in some Catholic services.
This week Czech Books is looking at the novel Mrchopěvci, or Gravelarks, the first novel by the hugely accomplished polymath and polyglot author Václav Pinkava, who wrote - amongst others - under the pen name Jan Křesadlo. Pinkava was born in Prague in 1926 and emigrated to Britain in 1969 where he worked as a clinical psychologist in Colchester. Gravelarks was his first novel, written during his early retirement; it was hailed by author Josef Škvorecký as "one of the most original, shocking, truthful works of contemporary Czech fiction" and was