This week in Mailbox: music on Radio Prague, our SoundCzech series, stamps featuring Czech WWII heroes, staff photos on Radio Prague's website. Listeners quoted: Christopher Roung, Tom Caprioli, Ramiro Diez, Travis McMullins.
Time to read from your e-mails again - this is Mailbox, the programme for your views and comments. Hello and thanks for tuning in.
We often quote from e-mails sent by listeners who tune in to Radio Prague's FM rebroadcasts on the CBC in Canada. For some reason, these listeners - and almost nobody else actually - ask us about the songs played in our programmes. Maybe it is because of clearer reception on FM. This query was sent in by Christopher Roung.
"Hello, I'm from Toronto Canada. I was listening to the CBC radio, which is Radio Prague just before 5:30 am time here. Just before the 5:30 am CBC news there was a music score that was on that I really liked and I heard it last week as well. In the song the words sounded like 'yak se domo...' If you could please be able to find out the name of this song and the artist I would greatly appreciate it."
Hard as we tried, we could not identify the song, I'm afraid. It might help us if you could remember what kind of programme preceded it - an interview, a music or literature programme etc. You may also try and contact the CBC Radio Overnight team at www.cbc.ca who put the programme together. They might be able to help.
Staying on the topic of music, this comment concerns Radio Prague's Czech language programme SoundCzech which explains Czech idioms using song lyrics. Tom Caprioli from Wisconsin writes:
"I listen to SoundCzech to hear how Czech is spoken. Unfortunately, the presenters of the programs speak Czech too fast to be useful to the untrained ear of an English speaker. It would be helpful if they would slow the pace of their spoken Czech so that one can follow the written Czech as they speak the words. I find the SoundCzech series of programs very useful but very frustrating when trying to imitate the spoken Czech words. Please tell the presenters to speak slower and louder. Like speaking to a child. (heehee) Thank you for this series of programs. It is very helpful."
Thank you for letting us know about this problem. We will try our best to pronounce the Czech as clearly as we can.
And from Quito, Ecuador, Ramiro Diez has this question:
"I have several stamps from Ceskoslovensko with the portraits of these people: Jan Hajecek, Marie Sedlackova, Oskar Benes, Vaclav Prochazka. I would appreciate if you could explain to me who they were."
When I searched the web for these names, I found out they were all involved in the anti-fascist resistance movement in occupied Czechoslovakia during the Second World War. Jan Hajecek was a leader of a resistance group. Marie Sedlackova was a messenger for an illegal resistance group in Moravia and died in the Mauthausen concentration camp in 1945. Captain Oskar Benes left the country in July 1939 for the Soviet Union and took part in the fighting as a Soviet army member. He was killed in April 1945 north of Prague. Vaclav Prochazka from Ivancice was arrested by the Gestapo in May 1942 and executed in Brno at age 32.
And finally, Travis McMullins from the US writes:
"I've been listening to the stations of the World Radio Network for some time now, and one of my favorite stations is Radio Prague. I really love the stories from the Czech Republic. For example, the recent story comparing the successful transition to Democracy and its glowing example to the people of Cuba. I have wanted to try Czech beer since another story I heard recently. I've been fascinated to hear news about the proposed US radar base from Radio Prague and also the Russian perspective. I especially enjoy the interviews too! I recently visited your website but I am sad to see that there are no faces to see of the people who bring me my favorite news. Please tell your web designer to add pictures! And keep up the good work! I really enjoy listening."
Thank you for those kind words - and as a matter of fact, there are photos of the department members to be found on the website. You need to go to the Staff section on the left hand side of the main page. The pictures are updated twice a year: Staff
Now it only remains to repeat our listeners' competition question for one last time this month.
The September mystery Czech was a child actor who was awarded an Academy Juvenile Award in 1948. Who was he?
You still have one more week to send us the name of this mystery person and a few facts about him if you like. The address is as usual, firstname.lastname@example.org or Radio Prague, 12099 Prague. Mailbox will be back again next week, until then please keep those letters coming and thanks for listening.