Noah's Ark in Prague?
Street theatre has been a tradition throughout Europe since the medieval ages. It's a common sight, even today, to see gaily dressed performers juggling, playing a range of unusual instruments, and entertaining crowds of tourists and locals alike. Upholding this long history of outdoor entertainment, two University students in Prague spoke to our correspondent Corrin Carter about what had inspired them to once again bring the theatre to the streets in their representation of Noah's Ark on stilts.
"My name is Jakub Malek" ... "and I'm Petr Prokop..."
J.M.: " We are students of the Drama Faculty of the Academy of Arts in Prague. This performance begun last year when we did a festival and this year we have the project on the stilts."
P.P.: "This year, it's going to be a traditional [theme] in Prague and for next year, in 2002 we are preparing a huge theatre festival in Mala Strana just like last year."
When does this performance currently take place?
J.M: "The Old Town and Mala Strana every week-end at about 9p.m."
So far what has the reaction from the crowd been like?
J.M: "We are very glad that people like our parades, it's a sort of satisfaction for us..."
P.P.: Mostly the Japanese are very enthusiastic and they like it very much."
J.M.: "Czech people do not show their feelings and I think people from everywhere else do and are more enthusiastic than the Czech people so it is very nice to do it for the tourists as there are a lot of tourists in Prague..."
P.P.: "... but it's not only for the tourists, it's also for the Czech people."
What was the original inspiration behind this?
P.P.: "It is inspired by the story of Noah's Ark from the bible but it is transferred to the present time and is reflecting our view of these days."
Where does your funding for this come from?
P.P.: "It's from the City Hall of Prague 1 and also from the Prague- European City of Culture 2000."
Do you plan to reproduce the same theme next year?
J.M.: "Of course, we want to hold this tradition that we founded last year and are continuing this year. As my colleague said, we want to do a huge festival that was in Prague in the year 2002, we want to invite a lot of theatres and a lot of shows and of course, to do some shows ourselves."