What about summer festivals?

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Earlier this year, we invited you to many events – conferences, festivals, premieres, workshops, and other gatherings – that were planned to take place in the Czech Republic. However, the invisible corona agens stepped in and everything changed suddenly. After weeks of chaos and uncertainty, when organizers were coming to terms with various scenarios – from cancelling and postponing the events to other dates to virtual realization – alternative plans how to meet the audiences live have begun to develop.

Tanec Praha in the city landscape

One of the biggest dance events, the International Festival of Contemporary Dance and Movement Theatre Tanec Praha, which traditionally takes place in May and June in Prague, as well as Czech and Moravian towns, has changed its dramaturgy significantly. It cannot offer its exclusive program with William Forsythe’s company as the highlight of the season, thus the programmers decided to aim at local artists and topics. Dance and movement will be engaged in reviving the area of Žižkov in Prague. Art projects that will present the audience with discussions and reflections on the future in degraded areas and their potential will be selected in the public call announced by the Artistic Board of the Tanec Praha festival. The project is called Plíce Žižkova/Žižkov’s Lungs and is carried out in cooperation with Tanec Praha and Landscape festival.

Other parts of the 32nd edition of Tanec Praha with 11 dance projects will take place in 17 Czech and Moravian towns. The only performance taking place under the roof of the Ponec Theatre will be the Prague opening of the project The Match with the language of the tYhle company.

Tenacious Korespondance

One of the charming events in the Czech festival summer is KoresponDance festival. It takes place in Žďár nad Sázavou with the main venue of the local chateau. Marie Kinsky, the director of the festival, has managed to develop strong relations with the local community. During the year the artists work with schools with the successful program The School Dances, which is related to the organizer of the festival SE.S.T.A, the Centre for Choreographic Development.

This year’s 11th edition of KoresponDance will take place one month later “come what may” as it is listed on the festival’s website. The projects that cannot be performed live will be online or recorded. Dramaturgy promises projects by Eliška Brtnická, Viktor Černický or Holektiv company. However, everything is in motion and the festival program is being prepared and tuned. It is clear now that the program will also include guided tours in open chateau gardens and concerts in various genres. KoresponDance is always a mixture of art experiences, genius loci, nature, and friendly atmosphere.

Modified Zero Point

The original and planned program of the summer festival Zero Point in Prague will sadly take place in a year. This year will take place on the planned dates of 11-17 July 2020 and regarding the current situation, dramaturgy will focus on local art and provide space for Czech artists, who returned from other countries for a longer period of time, such as Nela Kornetová.

Some parts of the program will be carried out based on the call to help projects that cannot be completed or realized due to the coronavirus crisis. The basic profile of the festival focused on innovative and experimental production will remain and will, as always, present a wide spectrum of genres and forms, along with work-in-progress projects and discussions about the meaning of art.

The main venue of the festival will be the new space for cultural events in Prague – Invalidovna in Karlín. The accompanying program and music events will take place in the Akropolis Palace.

Contemporary circus festivals at new risk

The contemporary circus genre in the Czech Republic has gained prestige and audience’s interest in the past decade. Strong focus on international cooperation, coproduction and international guests have made two big festival players to change their plans because of the coronavirus. Cirk Uff festival in Trutnov will invite their viewers to the program in September, whereas Letní Letná will take place in a year. “We have always known unforeseen circumstances may come. A gale, blackouts, administrative obstacles, artists’ injuries, and many others. We have had to opportunity to solve them, and the production and technical teams have managed to do that. Now we can only look sad and hop that we will appraise the great deal of work and effort in the future,” says Jiří Turek, the director of Letní Letná festival. Let us believe that the festival will handle the new risk of continuity interruption and will welcome loyal and new viewers next August.