National theatre management requests meeting with culture minister

The management of Prague’s National Theatre has requested a meeting with the culture minister, Alena Hanáková, over Friday’s unexpected dismissal of the theatre’s director Ondřej Černý. The management has questioned the move in an open letter to the minister and criticized her decision to appoint her deputy Martin Sankot as a temporary replacement. The management says the task should be given to someone from their own ranks in view of the complexities involved in managing such an institution.

Minister Hanáková on Friday sacked the theatre’s director without forewarning, later saying that she was not happy with the pace of the ongoing merger of the National Theatre and the Prague State Opera. The theatre head has rejected the stated reason for his dismissal saying his sacking and the manner in which it was undertaken reflected “arrogance of power”. Černý’s mandate was to have expired in March of 2013.