National Theatre Again Hosts Golden Prague Festival

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Phenomenal choreographer Jiří Kylián, world-famous baritone Adam Plachetka and stellar conductor Jiří Bělohlávek – notable Czech artists whose lives are to be revealed in films premièring at this year's Golden Prague International Television Festival. And these names are but a few of the attractions awaiting visitors at the 56th Golden Prague Festival organised by Czech Television. The festival will run from 25 to 28 September and, for the fifth year running, will be hosted by the National Theatre's New Stage and its immediate vicinity.

Television viewers and festival-goers can look forward to all kinds of star-studded names, live performances and, best of all, the latest original television music, dance and theatre films from around the world that can't be seen all in one place except right here.

This year's series of festive evenings kicks off on Wednesday, 25 September with a real treat: a concert entitled Ladies Music Night devoted to women and girls who not only make the music world beautiful but who also give some exceptional musical performances. During the inaugural evening, to be broadcast live from the National Theatre's New Stage on the ČT art channel, there will be performances by sopranos Martina Janková and Kateřina Kněžíková; violinist Olga Šroubková; violoncellist Terezie Kovalová; harpist Kateřina Englichová; organist and pianist Katta; French horn player Kateřina Javůrková; composer, singer, lyricist, producer and artist Vladivojna La Chia; and the exceptionally talented nine-year-old pianist Klára Gibišová. These ladies will be accompanied by the Ambroš Ladies Orchestra.

At a ceremonial public première the next day, the festival will offer viewers the unique documentary revelations of Jiří Bělohlávek, one of the most remarkable of all Czech conductors. Director Roman Vávra's film tells the intense and powerful story of the conductor's final years and his artistic pilgrimage. The narrative is replete with the director's creative and frank portrayal of someone who profoundly influenced the Czech Philharmonic Orchestra. The screening of the documentary Jiří Bělohlávek: My Love of Conducting will take place on Thursday, 26 September.

The next day there will be a première screening of a new documentary about world-renowned choreographer Jiří Kylián. This unique film, which was made during the period from September 2018 through to summer 2019, gives viewers a look at the process of preparing the big retrospective ballet performance Bridges of Time, which the choreographer prepared with the ballet ensemble of the National Theatre in Prague last autumn, laying bare the famous artist's private life. It also includes rare backstage footage from Jiří Kylián's March inauguration into the Académie des Beaux-Arts in March. He was the third Czech ever to receive this distinguished award, which the Academy has been giving since 1816, and one of the few foreigners to be thus honoured. The documentary film A Year in The Life of Jiří Kylián was made by director Martin Kubala. He also directed the next film – a profile documentary about the Czech opera singer Adam Plachetka, whose talent went beyond the Czech borders long ago. This film, entitled Adam Plachetka, Reaching the Top, describes the artist's journey to worldwide success. Both these portrait films will première on Friday, 27 September. At that time Adam Plachetka will be preparing for his opera première in Chicago, but will nonetheless greet Golden Prague Festival viewers via video-conference.

Free registration for all the film evenings is available on our website.

This year the Golden Prague Festival is also preparing a block of sneak previews in Operations Building B that will be attended by their authors.

As it does every year, the festival will offer viewers dozens of competing films about dance, music and drama from around the world, absolutely free of charge. Thus viewers will have an opportunity to watch the world's best films made in the past year, either in the installed video boxes or on their own devices using the local Wi-Fi network.

The festival's partner evenings include a ballet performance of Swan Lake and Sergei Prokofiev's opera The Love for Three Oranges in the historic building of the National Theatre.

On two occasions it will also enliven the National Theatre's piazzetta. The first of these will be on Friday, 27 September, when dancer Jan Onder will welcome some StarDance celebrities and also dance with little children. The second will be on Saturday, 28 September at the traditional Golden Day of the Golden Prague Festival. The all-day programme for the whole family, filled with concerts, performances, dance and music workshops and improvisation, also provides free access to the National Theatre facilities.

The 56th Golden Prague Festival will be concluded on Saturday, 28 September with a grand finale – the awards ceremony and a programme made up of excellent dance and music performances. The Czech artistic elite will be presented at this year's final evening with performances by Andrea Kramešová, who has been a soloist at the National Theatre and on the global ballet scene for many years, members of the Laterna Magica art ensemble, and contemporary circus protagonists The Losers. Also performing that evening will be mezzo-soprano Ester Pavlů, musical virtuosi Hana Kubisová (violin) and Jana Boušková (harp), and the female a capella quartet Slavonics. Young students from Prague Dance Centre and the phenomenal ten-year-old twins Alex and Maxim Šesták, who will play a saxophone and piano jazz composition, will lend the Golden Prague awards ceremony a fresh note. The evening will be broadcast live by the cultural channel ČT art. This year's winning films will be decided by an international panel of five judges, represented on the Czech front by Jiří Nekvasil, the opera and film director and director of the National Moravian-Silesian Theatre.

We look forward to seeing you at the National Theatre's New Stage from Wednesday, 25 to Saturday, 28 September 2019.

For more information, please see also our Facebook profile: Golden Prague International Television Festival.