Dancers Shine at Golden Prague Awards
For dance fans, five dance companies provided the real show at Czech Television’s ‘Golden Prague’ awards night.
From classical to contemporary, solo performances to synchronized ballet, the live dance performances in between the awards and speeches showed the diversity of the Czech dance scene.
In particular, a few promising young artists demonstrated that audiences will continue to be delighted for years to come.
The annual Czech Television awards evening came to Divadlo Archa on Wed, Oct 8. Presenters included Dagmar Havlová (representing the Dagmar and Václav Havel Foundation) and Czech Television Director Petr Dvořák, who gave awards to filmmakers focused on music and dance.Ondřej Vinklát of the Czech National Ballet displayed his boyish charm and flawless technique playing Romeo to Marta Drastíková’s Juliet. While she was every bit the ballerina, his grounded movement brought a modern, accessible feel to this classic piece. Vinklát also joined Štěpán Pechar of the New Stage of the National Theater and 420People for Right on Time, a powerful contemporary duet filled with long lines and sharp movements.
The Czech National Ballet’s Mathias Deneux is another one to watch. He has an ease of movement that makes it enjoyable just to watch him walk. His solo performance, Just Solo, choreographed by Viktor Konvalinka to Seal’s People Get Ready, felt natural, open, and intimate, filling the stage using no more than contemporary moves and a wooden stool.Nataša Novotná and Václav Kuneš from 420People kept the mood light with a playful power struggle.
They began with Kuneš following Novotná in a slow-motion walk forward, his hand resting on top of her head, and ended with her hanging upside down and backwards from his shoulders, and all the while they maintained a pair of goofy smiles. Staying connected and transferring weight creatively, their routine resembled puppy love (idiom: young love) danced to a Louis Armstrong version of La Vie en Rose.
One of the highlights of the evening was a close look at the Czech National Ballet’s Swan Lake pas de deux by Nikolá Márová and Michal Štípa. Márová’s strength and precision would be impressive even from the highest balcony seats. This smaller setting also gave the audience a glimpse at her mischievous facial expressions, which added extra charm to her performance.
The evening was completed by numbers from Bohemia Ballet, classical elegance from the Prague Chamber Ballet, and a high energy, tribal-inspired dance choreographed by Ivana Hannichová and Tomáš Protivínský to Beyonce’s Ghost/Haunted to close the show. The Prague dance community earned every right to raise their glasses at the post-show reception to a night of successful performances. – oo
– Auburn Scallon, Opus Osm writer
Photo Credits: Top: Auburn Scallon; all others, Mikuláš Křepelka