A little bit of Czech in France

Part of the score of Antonin Dvorak's opera Rusalka, will open a Czech cultural season that is planned to start in France in the spring. By Nicole Klement

From May to December of this year, the Czech Ministry of culture plans to promote Czech culture in France with art exhibitions, classical, contemporary and jazz concerts, literature, theatre performances, film screenings and seminars. Earlier I spoke to Inge Zadna, the executive commissioner of the international project about the sort of projects that have been chosen to represent the Czech culture.

"There will be a lot of exhibitions. There will be a large programme of classical music, alternative music and traditional music. There is a programme of theatre performances. There are also some dance projects, a very strong film block of projects and also literature projects."

And do you know how many people will be participating on the Czech side?

"I can't say exactly how many people there will be because there are a lot of people who are preparing the projects here in the Czech Republic. But, there will be about 120 or 150 projects going on in France during the season."

I've also heard the project will cost approximately 200 million Czech Crowns. Which side is funding the season?

"The project is being funded by both sides so the Ministry of Culture has already given 100 million Czech crowns to pay the transport and the insurance of objects for the exhibitions. And the French side will finance the rest."

Could you tell me what the Ministry of Culture here in the Czech Republic hopes to achieve by presenting Czech culture in France?

"It's a really large opportunity and a very nice opportunity to present what we have here. And also a little bit to restore the very rich cultural relations from the first Republic, from the 20s and 30s when our relation with France was very rich."

So, as a sneak preview and for our listeners that might be travelling to France would you suggest one of the season's event that they should go see?

"In June you can go to see the exhibition of Kupka in the museum d'Orsay in Paris. In July there will be a very interesting event in the festival at Avignon dedicated to the work of Vaclav Havel. And in Autumn you can see a very important exhibition of Czech baroque art in Lille at the museum of Beaux Arts."

Author: Nicole Klement
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