This week in Mailbox: Bomb threat at Prague airport on October 7; new frequencies; music on RP on October 3; Adolf Hoffmeister. Listeners quoted: Frank Oehlschlaegel, Germany; Alan Vybiral, US; Patsy Libby, US.

Ruzyne Airport
Hello and welcome to Mailbox, Radio Prague's weekly programme in which we read from your letters and answer your questions and comments.

Let's start with an e-mail sent to us by Frank Oehlschlaegel from the German city of Halle.

"Yesterday, on October 7th, I was supposed to fly from Prague to Munich. When I came to the airport I saw a very chaotic situation. The airport was closed for 90 minutes. Can you give me some information as to what happened or links to Czech websites where I can find out more?"

Radio Prague did feature that event in the daily news bulletin. Let me quote:

"Prague's Ruzyne Airport was closed for just over an hour on Friday afternoon, after an anonymous telephone bomb threat was received. The airport's main hall was evacuated, while passengers had to remain on planes which had just landed until a search was completed."

Thankfully, no bomb was found but the measures had to be taken. If you want to be in touch with the latest Czech news, you can subscribe to our free e-mail bulletin. The form can be found on our website. Depending on where you live in the world, you can read news from the Czech Republic with your morning coffee, during your lunch break or when you last check your mail before you go to bed.

Now on to some more technical stuff. We'd like to draw your attention to a few more possibilities to listen to Radio Prague's programmes.

First, there is new frequency trial for our English broadcasts to North America for the winter schedule from October 2005 to March 2006. Starting on the night of 11th-12th October 2005, on a trial basis for the winter season, Radio Prague extended its shortwave broadcasts in English for central and western parts of North America, with a new time and frequency relayed via Sackville in Canada:

UTC (GMT) Frequency Power Band Transmitter

0330-0357 6040 kHz 250 kW 49m Sackville, Canada

Previously Radio Prague's frequencies at this time were directed to listeners in other parts of the world. We look forward to your reception reports, letting us know if the signal is reaching you loud and clear.

In addition to that, the World Radio Network, or WRN, has given Radio Prague an additional slot on the WRN English to Europe network, daily at 19.30 - 20.00 UTC. This change will come into effect on 30th October 2005.

And now back to your letters. Mr Alan Vybiral from Nebraska had this question.

"I enjoy your programs very much. What was the music that was played at the end of the October 3 Radio Prague 1300 UTC broadcast? It was a guitar instrumental piece. The music selection was very good. This was an English language broadcast and I listened to it via the internet."

What you heard must have been a song called "Crowns" by Money Mark. The song is from his 1999 album "Push the Button".

And Patsy Libby from the United States has this question.

"What was the role of Adolf Hoffmeister in the history of Czechoslovakia? I understand that he was an artist and diplomat."

Adolf Hoffmeister was born in 1902. He was, successively but often simultaneously, a painter, caricaturist, illustrator, scenery designer, writer, dramaturge, translator, journalist, radio commentator, teacher, art critic, political pundit, diplomat, cultural administrator, and, last but not least, a passionate traveller. In the 1920s he was an important member of a Prague-based arts union called "Devetsil". Hoffmeister fled Czechoslovakia in 1939 for Paris, where he was arrested and interned for several months. He escaped via Portugal, Morocco and Cuba and eventually got to New York. He worked for exile radio during the war. He was also the author of the libretto of Hans Krasa's children's opera, Brundibar, which was performed at the Terezin concentration camp. Hoffmeister returned after the war and started working for UNESCO. He worked at the Czechoslovak Embassy in Paris, then taught at the school of applied arts in Prague. He died in 1973.

And from one famous Czech to another - yes, it's time to repeat our competition question for October.

"We are looking for the name of a Czech-born rock musician - guitarist and songwriter. He was born in Prague in 1948 but in the 1960s he left for New York with his parents. At the legendary New York club CBGB's he met the ambitious and talented Patti Smith and the two of them started collaborating. Over the years, he played alongside some other influential rock artists, including Iggy Pop and John Cale. After the fall of the communist regime, he returned to his native Prague. At present, he is a songwriter, film composer and a sought-out producer."

Please, send us your answers by the end of October, to Radio Prague, 12099, Prague, Czech Republic or [email protected]. Till next time, bye-bye.