In the first half of the 20th century Czechoslovakia was at the forefront of design, from architecture to furniture production. But a new publication by Prague’s Museum of Decorative Arts (UPM) together with Academia, makes the case that good design survived in pockets even under socialism. The book, entitled Design in the Czech Lands 1900 – 2000, featuring hundreds of reproductions was co-edited by UPM’s Iva Knoblochová. She told me how plans for the ambitious book came together.
Members of the legendary rock group Pražský výběr will go on stage at Prague’s O2 Arena on Wednesday night to play the biggest and quite possibly the last concert of their 40-year career, called “eR - Last or Forever”. The concert of Pražský výběr, one of the most significant rock bands of the 1980s, will be accompanied by the Czech National Symphony Orchestra, and they will be joined on stage by a number of guest musicians.
Terne Chave is currently one of the most successful Romany bands in the Czech Republic. Its seven members started out performing Romany songs at special events in their home town of Hradec Kralové and ended up touring European countries. Today they still draw on their Romany roots but they compose their own music laced with Latino, jazz, punk, reggae, flamenco, and rock. Check-out our Sunday Music show for a taste of what they have to offer.
Publishers that focus on contemporary writing from Central Europe are few and far between, but they play an important role in bringing Czech poetry and prose to an international audience. One of the newest players is Jantar Publishing, based in London. In just a few years it has established a strong reputation with its beautifully produced translations, several of which we have already talked about here on Radio Prague. As David Vaughan finds out in this week’s Czech Books, Jantar is going from strength to strength with ambitious plans for the
Just a few days ago, the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences announced 10 films worldwide which had made the short list for Oscar nominations in the Animated Short Films Category. Among them, is a film entitled Happy End, the work of up and coming Czech animator Jan Saska. In his late 20s, Saska worked on Happy End throughout studies in Zlín and at Prague’s FAMU film school. The B&W short, about the misadventures of a bunch of Czech hunters, a tractor driver, a party-goer and a not so good-looking corpse, is darkly funny and told in an unconventional
The daily bread of Brussels officials is often associated with bureaucracy and senseless regulations. But a group of Czechs working in European institutions in Brussels decided to challenge this notion and show that there is more to life in the European capital. They teamed up with professional singers to stage a performance of Rusalka, perhaps the best-known opera by Antonín Dvořák.
In today’s edition of Sunday Music show we’ll be listening to jazz arrangements of songs by Jan Nedvěd, a legendary Czech folk singer-songwriter. A selection of Jan Nedvěd’s best-known songs, featuring the Vilém Spilka Jazz Quartet, has just recently been released on an album called Podvod or Betrayal. Guitarist and music promoter Vilém Spilka selected eight of Jan Nedvěd’s songs, which have become staples around Czech campfires, and reinvented them in original jazz covers.
A photograph of a skirmish between human rights activists and supporters of Chinese President Xi Jinping during his visit to Prague this year has won the top prize in this year’s Czech Press Photo. During the visit in March, organized groups of Chinese supporters clashed with Czech activists, some of them evoking the legacy of the late Václav Havel and his friendship with the Dalai Lama. The winning entry was taken by photojournalist Michal Šula.