Welcome to Opus Osm, the free, online magazine.
We’re here in Prague to tell you everything you’ll be happy to know about Czech classical music, opera, and ballet.
No pop-ups, no selfies, no shouting, no edgy humor.
Just solid, informative writing in language written by regular people, for regular people — original interviews and accurate information in authentic English language, in classic journalism style.
* You’re in an audience watching classical performances by Czech authors, anywhere in the world
* You enjoy Czech performances at home on YouTube, CD, tv, etc.
* You play or write Czech classical music
* You perform or write Czech opera
* You dance or choreograph Czech ballets
* You’re a writer, technical staff, usher, etc. for Czech performances
* You’re a teacher at an arts school, academy, etc.
* You’re a financial stakeholder, a ticket buyer, donor, grantor, media partner, etc.
The Latin word opus (creative work) + plus the Czech word osm (eight) = Opus Osm
(Osm is pronounced almost like “awesome.”)
The Opus Osm vision connects eight awesome international communities of people – including you – through Czech classical music, opera, and ballet. Find your description in the box at the right.
Join our friendly community – read and share Opus Osm.
Embarrassed about Beethoven?
Do you feel guilty because you don’t understand Beethoven, or can’t stand opera? Are you curious about the real Mozart? Wondering what place Swan Lake has in this hip-hop world? Are you short on time, but feel that you “should” know something more about the classics — someday?
You’re not alone.
And it’s not necessarily your fault. Today, the popular media pushes the classics aside, in effect telling readers that they don’t need to know anything about classical music, opera, or ballet. That these arts are not important – that they’re dead.
Due to time restrictions and language differences, we don’t use telephones. Please contact Opus Osm directly by emailing firstname.lastname@example.org. Your contact information is never shared.
Opus Osm comes directly to you via RSS, http://opusosm.com/rss. Or find Opus Osm on Twitter @ Opus Osm; on Facebook at Opus Osm; on LinkedIn at Opus Osm, Mary Matz; and on YouTube at Opus Osm.
But your access to the classics is a human right. The classics are part of your ancestry (even if you’re not Czech).
Turning to the classics, like improving your tennis backhand or gaining points on your new video game, takes time and patience.
But the rewards are phenomenal. You learn tolerance. You learn patience. You suddenly know how to listen and see better.
And you even, as with the best meditation practice, can find a unique inner calm.
It’s the perfect “vacation” from a noisy world.
And Opus Osm is here to help you get started.
Our original interviews and explainer articles, comprehensive calendars of performances, and drawings for free CDs all gently introduce you to the rich universe of Czech classical music, opera, and ballet.
Just click to get started. Beethoven* is eager to meet you.
(* True, Beethoven technically wasn’t Czech, but he has many connections to the Czech Republic and its music. You can find out how on Opus Osm.)
Opus Osm was founded by American editor and journalist Mary Matz in October 2010. It was welcomed by the Czech classical arts community.
Since then, a small but dedicated group of Opus Osm writers and other volunteers who share our vision have actively worked to bring the Czech classics to the online world.
Opus Osm, z.s. (zapsaný spolek) is a non-profit, charitable association registered with the Czech Ministry of the Interior.
Our Core Staff comprises:
Zuzana Sklenková, assistant editor, board secretary, and writer.
Zuzana is an extremely capable writer and administrator. She masterfully handles the technical requirements for running our charitable organization.
She is also known to Czech audiences as the editor-in-chief of Gate and an editor of Bridge, the English-language teaching magazines for students.
Miroslav Setnička, photographer and videographer.
An excellent on-site photographer, Miroslav is the quiet, friendly man you see moving slowly around the performance hall, silently taking photos.
Formerly a chemical analyst, he repairs and innovates all things technical and electronic, and jumps in to help every time our computers misbehave.
Hana Blažková, writer, researcher, and photographer/videographer.
Hana’s many interests include visual arts and a wide range of music, from Baroque to contemporary classical. She does production and PR work for the Hlasohled voice project — and she even sings, herself!
Hana is a great strategic thinker and a fine writer. Her mother-in-law and even her young daughter also occasionally help us with reports mainly from children’s operas.
Auburn Scallon, writer and Opus Osm social media expert
Auburn brings some unique talents to Opus Osm. Not only an accomplished, very experienced writer, and taught ballet, tap, jazz, kick line, and contemporary dance in Seattle and New York. Auburn specializes in writing about dance.
She is also an editor for Bridge and Gate magazines and is a regular contributor to Expats.cz and the Eating Europe blogs. Among her many projects, she keeps an eye on our social media development and activities.
Hana Trollman, writer. A sensitive writer with keen insights, she has also been a full-time administrator assistant at the Charles University medical faculty.
She and husband Frank Trollman participate remotely, from the UK.
Frank Trollman, writer. A tell-it-like-it-is writer with a fine sense of humor, he recently graduated from full-time studies at the Charles University 2nd medical faculty.
Marek Setnička, computer genius. Marek operates his own computer programming development company, Rising Kite, and helps us remain calm when our computer explodes. He can fix almost anything and explains everything.
Mary Matz, former editor and writer (retired, 2016). Mary survived a 40-year career as a print journalist and writer. She is also known to Czech audiences as a freelance writer for Bridge and Gate, the English-language teaching magazines.
Other valued contributors in our history include writers James Mensch, Lucie Rohanová, and Baia Dzagnidze; translators Tereza Vařechová, Hana Hrachovinová, and Adam Přihoda; journalism advisor Lynne DeMichele, Seattle area book author; and music advisor Dr Daniel Freeman, Minneapolis musicologist and author.