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This year the Faculty of Music of the Janáček Academy of Performing Arts (JAMU) is again organising the prestigious International Leoš Janáček Competition in Brno. Young musicians will perform on the piano and organ at the 28th edition of this competition. The final rounds of the organ competition will take place in the Church of the Assumption of the Virgin Mary and in the Besední dům in the piano competition, accompanied by the Czech Virtuosi Orchestra under the direction of conductor Stanislav Vavřínek.  more

The Actors’ Association published the nominations for the Thalia Awards 2022 today. Several of them were awarded to actors and singers from Brno theatres.  more

The musical Nine Crosses was written especially for the Brno Municipal Theatre. The story tells an old Moravian legend about a tragic act that took place in a small village near Velká Bíteš. The music for the musical was composed by Brno composer Robin Schenk while the script was written by Petr Štěpán and Miroslav Ondra. The world premiere of the new musical will be brought to the stage by director Petr Gazdík.  more

The Concert for Brno aims to support the construction of an organ for the new concert hall. It will be broadcast live on Czech Television and Czech Radio. The evening will feature violinist Josef Špaček, pianist Ivo Kahánek, the B-Side Band, and legendary opera singer Soňa Červená.  more

The Janáček Opera Company of the National Theatre Brno is calling an audition for a dancer for a role in the preparation of Franz Lehár’s operetta The Merry Widow. The NTB will be staging the operetta directed by Magdalena Švecová and Martin Pacek, who will also be doing the choreography.  more

The first year of the international Jewish culture festival ŠTETL FEST 2022 begins on Friday. In its content and scope it will be the biggest Jewish culture festival in the Czech Republic. The festival’s programme will offer lectures, theatre performances, guided tours and several concerts. Some of those performing will be the Avishai Cohen Trio, Yale Strom & Hot Pstromi, Graffe String Quartet or Dominika Weiss Hošková. The festival will close with the Brundibár children’s opera performed by the Brno Philharmonic Orchestra and the Cantilena choir. The motto of the entire event is “Dignity in Diversity”.  more

Singer Hana Zagorová died today. She was 75. Zagorová came from Ostrava, but her education and early artistic career are closely associated with Brno. From 1965 to 1969 she studied acting at the Janáček Academy of Music and Performing Arts.  more

The TrutnOFF BrnoON festival has been part of the Brno summer since 2020. This year, bands such as Julian Marley & The Uprising, The Subways, The Sisters of Mercy, Monkey Business, and Reef will perform in Pisárky. The festival starts today and runs until Sunday.  more

The Brno Cultural Newsletter provides an overview of events and opportunities in the coming period concerning theatres, clubs, festivals, and cultural events in Brno.  more

Brno-based musician Dáša Ubrová is now the editor of the book Jazzová mise Jaromíra Hniličky (Jaromír Hnilicka’s Jazz Mission), seeking support on Hithit for its printing. The book traces the journey of an exceptional musician, composer, arranger, and teacher whose professional life is closely linked to Brno.  more

The Latvian instrumental band Very Cool People recently released an album with the long title 50 Years of Influence + 30 Years of Cool Equals 13 Years of Music Hooliganism. In a few days they will come to Brno to present it – they’ll play on 17th September in Music Lab club. And besides the songs from the aforementioned album, you’ll also get to hear the complete new songs from the yet-to-be-released projects. The band, led by guitarist Elvijs Grafcovs, who answers our questions, has plenty of them. more

After a covid break, the streets of Brno were once again filled with costumes from various parts of Moravia as well as other European countries. On the first day of September, the International Folklore Festival Brno began. Like the vast majority of festivals and regular events that could not take place in the last two years, the IFF also had a break due to government measures. And that is why this year’s festival chose the telling subtitle “We Live”. This time BROLN provided the opening concert in the courtyard of the New Town Hall, and there were two special reasons for this.  more

At the penultimate concert of its tenth year jubilee staged in the Fresco Room of the Comenium Elementary School, the Olomouc Baroque Festival presented an evening with the Musica Florea ensemble. The musicians, conducted by cellist Marek Štryncl, performed a selection of compositions by forgotten classical and early romantic composers Karl Kohaut, Jan Ladislav Dusík and Johann Nepomuk Hummel. The choice of composers was not random – this year it is 210 years since Dusík’s death and 185 years since Hummel’s death. Performing with the ensemble’s core members – violinist Magdalena Malá and Simona Tydlitátová, violist Lýdie Cillerová, cellist Marek Štryncl and bass player Ondřej Štajnochra – was Petra Matějová on the fortepiano.  more

The album Zavrzlama by Bosnian band Divanhana is so far in continuous sequence, the second best world recording of 2022 according to the panel of radio publicists of World Music Charts Europe. Divanhana will perform as part of the Lednice-Valtice Music Festival on 26 August in Hlohovec and a day later in Břeclav – Charvátská Nová Ves. The band’s pianist, Neven Tunjíč, is here to answer our questions.  more

On 18 and 19 August, the tenth anniversary edition of the Olomouc Baroque Music Festival included a unique dramaturgical treat in its program – one of the most historically important Czech operas which, however, does not appear much on the stages of opera houses or music halls. This is Dráteník (The Tinker), the first original Czech opera composed by František Škroup to a libretto by Josef Krasoslav Chmelenský. It was directed by Kateřina Křivánková, with costumes and set by Sylva Marková and music by Marek Čermák, and performed by the Volantes Orchestra, the festival’s resident ensemble. Singing roles were taken up by Matúš Šimko (Dráteník/Škroup), Lenka Cafourková Ďuricová (Růžena), Vincenc Ignác Novotný (Vojtěch), Zuzana Badárová (Liduška), Aleš Janiga (Květenský), Jiří Miroslav Procházka (Lána), and Martin Vodrážka (Kůl). The purely dramatic roles of Chmelenský – the aforementioned author of the libretto – and Hranatý the guard were played by Martin Mihál. The reviewer visited the premiere performance.  more

For the seventh time, the multi-genre music festival Brno Music Marathon proved that with precise organization and a little luck, an astonishing amount of music can be packed into one long weekend. From Thursday to Sunday (11-14 August), selected music halls, squares, courtyards, and city streets were filled with the artistic creations of countless bands, ensembles, and specific musical groups of all genres and styles. Lovers of rock, world music, jazz, artistic music, folklore, and improvised music were in for a treat. However, this year’s edition differed from the previous one in one crucial respect: 2022 introduced the first ever artist in residence of the festival, the violinist, flautist, and pianist Anna Fusekmore

For the sixth time, the Music Marathon has stirred up the streets, squares, and many spaces in Brno with all sorts of musical genres. These are not necessarily just concert venues, however. The Hausopera ensemble, for example, took their opera The Eternal Miss Pale to the Zeman Café on Friday 12 August. In three weekend performances there, they will complete their “Trilogy for the City”, a custom-made project for Brno that recalls its pros, cons, and above all some of its functionalist buildings.  more

As part of the Ibérica Festival, Catalan singer-songwriter Magalí Sare performed with guitarist Sebastià Gris from Mallorca on 17 June 2022 in Brno. The following interview was conducted immediately after the concert.  more

Just like every year, the Znojmo Music Festival brought its visitors an opera of its own production. For this year's 18th edition, subtitled Returning Home and Our Guardian Angels, the organizers prepared a stage performance of Joseph Haydn's oratorio The Return of Tobias. The Old Testament story about a tested marriage and a blind father was performed by the Czech Ensemble Baroque under the baton of Roman Válek and directed by Tomáš Ondřej Pilař at the premiere on 15 July 2022 (this performance was visited by this author) in the riding hall of the Louka Monastery – the reprise and last performances will take place on the following two days. Shira Patchornik (Sarah), Lucie Kaňková (d'Azaria), Dagmar Šašková (Anna), Theodore Browne (Tobias), and Adam Plachetka (Tobit) performed the solo roles. Costumes were designed by Ivana Ševčíková Miklošková, choreography by Martin Šinták, and lighting design by Tomáš Příkrýmore

Last year they were the stars of Brasil Fest Brno. This year they will be welcomed to Náměšt’ nad Oslavou, where they will perform on 25 July at the Folk Holidays as part of an evening called Poetry in Every Song. In the meantime, they have played at the WOMEX world music fair in Portugal and the sold-out spring festival Budapest Ritmo. Above all, they were awarded the prestigious prize of Songlines magazine, today’s most respected periodical in world music. They call themselves Ayom, and alongside Brazilian singer Jabu Morales, they are made up of musicians from Angola, Greece, and Italy. Our questions were answered by accordionist and composer Alberto Becucci, guitarist Pedro Bastos João, and of course the charismatic singer and drummer.  more

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Upcoming events

Nine crosses

04/10/22, 19:00 / Činoherní scéna MDB (The Drama Theatre of the Brno City Theatre)

Chinaski

04/10/22, 19:30 / Club Fléda

German Baroque music and poetry

04/10/22, 19:30 / Barokní sál Místodržitelského paláce (The Baroque Hall of the Governor's Palace)

LOBBYBOY&SAAB900TURBO + TOKYO DRIFT

04/10/22, 20:00 / Kabinet múz (The Cabinet of Muses)

BASTL JAM

05/10/22, 20:00 / Kabinet múz (The Cabinet of Muses)

La bohème

06/10/22, 19:00 / Janáčkovo divadlo (Janáček Theatre)

My Fair Lady

06/10/22, 19:00 / Hudební scéna Městského divadla Brno (Music Theatre)

La bohème

06/10/22, 19:00

Barbara Maria Willi presents ... XIX. vintage cycle of early music concerts: Monologos

06/10/22, 19:30 / Konvent Milosrdných bratří (Convent of Merciful Brothers)


Listening Guide: Leoš Janáček's Sinfonietta
with Jakub Hrůša
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