Tag: Mary Matz

Magazine: Ouch! Toe Shoes Hurt!

That’s what the all-male dance troupe Ballet Hommes Fatals is finding out as they prepare for their Feb 28

Opus Osm Minutka – Lost Objects

The Prague State Opera steps out of the traditional opera mold to present a rarely-performed, startling and thought-provoking 21st century work. Opus Osm Minutka (Little Minute): Five Fast Facts about Lost Objects oratorio [1] This post-Minimalist oratorio composed by Michael Gordon, David Lang, and Julia Wolfe, with libretto by poet/writer Deborah Artman, premiered in New York in 2001. In one of its rare performances, it premiered at Prague’s New Stage…

Belfiato, the Five that’s Ten

The Belfiato Quintet celebrates its milestone 10th anniversary this year. Oboist Jan Souček tells us more about who they are and what they do. One of the main challenges an ensemble faces is attracting the right mix of musicians, Jan Souček tells us over coffee. The original Belfiato members, all students, were attending different music schools; moreover, by the time they decided to push on and develop into a professional…

Getting a Handle on The Nutcracker

The Nutcracker ballet premiered in 1892, and since then, dozens of variations have all but obscured the story’s original plot. The Czech National Ballet’s Petr Zuska sorts out the origins for us, and explains his version, The Nutcracker and the Cuddly Mouse, premiering Dec 3-4 at The National Theatre. The Confusion Begins with a Nutcracker For most of us, a nutcracker is a small silver tool you hold in your…

Young Careers: Hana Hrachovinová

Opus Osm continues our series of articles on ‘Young Careers’ – Czech performers under the age of approximately 30, who are on the pathway to brilliant careers. Here we take a look at a promising young harpist. Opus Osm Minutka (″Little Minute″) 5 Quick Questions for Hana Hrachovinová 1What did you learn in Paris that you probably wouldn’t have if you had continued straight on for your Master’s degree at…

The ‘Unboundaries’ of the Bennewitz Quartet

The award-winning Bennewitz Quartet regularly tours abroad successfully, but it makes an equally distinct impression at home in front of a small local audience. How? The success of the Bennewitz Quartet goes beyond just their accomplished musicianship. They also have a special touch with audiences, the ability to go beyond traditional boundaries and share their uninhibited joy from the music they play. They perform with expressive body language and vitality….

Two Questions for PKF’s Emmanuel Villaume

French conductor Emmanuel Villaume begins his tenure as Music Director and Chief Conductor of the PKF-Prague Philharmonia this season. So we ask him two big questions. 1 What new insights or experiences would you like to bring as Music Director and Chief Conductor? I’m totally aware that the Prague Philharmonia is very loved and respected by the audience of Prague. I really want to preserve and capitalize on the work…

Next Chance to See: decadance

The Czech National Ballet gets our creative juices flowing for the fall season with its upcoming performances of decadance. But tickets are selling out fast. decadance is an unforgettable montage of several dance pieces created by Israeli choreographer Ohad Naharin. He left his Batsheva Dance Company last spring just long enough to share his choreography and famous ″gaga″ method with the Prague dancers. As current Czech National Ballet Artistic Director…

Comedy Comes to Baroque Opera

Visitors have the rare chance to enjoy a comic opera from 1763, this September at Český Krumlov’s gorgeously authentic Baroque Theatre. Everyone’s cultural ″to-do″ list should contain a performance at this beautiful, timeless theatre inside Český Krumlov’s castle complex. Here, the Hof-Musici Baroque Orchestra presents Antonio Boroni’s L’Amore in Musica in three performances across the Sept 18-20 weekend during the Festival of Baroque Arts Český Krumlov. Events during the Festival:L’Amore…

Opus Osm Magazine: Being Chopin, Sand

Fryderyk Chopin (pianist Ivo Kahánek) and George Sand (actress Hana Maciuchová) offer a one-night-only music and character sketch June 18 at the Smetana’s Litomyšl Festival. ″The subject of our presentation was an idea of artistic director of the Festival Smetanova Litomyšl, Vojtěch Stříteský, who also created the script,″ Ivo Kahánek begins his description for Opus Osm. Through Hana Maciuchová’s reading (in Czech) of Sand’s poems and correspondence, ″The audience will…

Opus Osm Minutka: Pulling Out All Stops

Organist Kateřina Chroboková explores variations on Gregorian hymn, sampled world organ music, and the effect of her own voice at two Smetana’s Litomyšl concerts June 20, 22. Opus Osm’s Minutka (“Little Minute”) 5 Fast Facts about Kateřina Chroboková’s Upcoming Concerts 1 In her organ concert June 20, she will perform her own Veni Sancte Spiritus, the premiere of her 10-minute variations on the theme of the Holy Spirit sequences of…

Opus Osm Minutka: Preview decadance

Israeli choreographer Ohad Naharin brings his ‘gaga’ dance style to The Czech National Ballet’s performance of his decadance. Here’s a quick look at ‘gaga.’ Opus Osm’s Minutka (Little Minute) Five Fast Facts about decadance premiering June 4, 5 at The New Stage 1 Ohad Naharin actually didn’t start dancing until he was 22; but then he went straight to the top – studying at Juilliard and the School of the…

Opus Osm Minutka: Czech Philharmonic Tells All

For three nights the Czech Philharmonic promises to ‘reveal all’ as it invites you ‘backstage’ to watch an informal onstage rehearsal. Opus Osm ‘Minutka’ (‘Little Minute’): What Happens in an Orchestra Rehearsal? Five Fast Facts about the Czech Philharmonic’s Zkouška Orchestru (Orchestra Rehearsal) — open to the public — May 5, 6, and 7, 7:30 pm, at The Rudolfinum 1 The informal presentation, led by Marek Eben interviewing Conductor Jiří…

Key Words: Shift, Fidget, and Wiggle

Try this: Put your keyboard over your left hip. Now look at your screen over your right shoulder. Hold this pose for at least 45 minutes. That’s what a typical violinist does – for several hours every day. And that doesn’t include twisting your left hand, while holding a bow in the fingers of your right. So it’s no surprise that a typical musician can develop just as many career-related…

Italian Cultural Institute Shares Its Treasures in Prague

When you think of impressive concert halls in Prague, don’t overlook the Baroque Chapel tucked away on Šporkova street in Malá Strana. The Baroque Chapel of the Italian Cultural Institute in Prague is a treasure trove of artistic beauty, offering music, art exhibitions, and more. The Italian Cultural Institute has a long history of hosting classical music concerts, usually featuring an Italian guest, often performing with Czech accompanists. For example,…

‘At Home’ with PKF’s Worldwide Chamber Series

Martina Cechová, musicologist for the PKF – Prague Philharmonia, invites listeners to learn a few tidbits and to hear composers’ works in a close-to-home atmosphere. An audience small enough to be classified “intimate” yet large enough to comfortably fill the space at the Czech Museum of Music gathers on a chilly December evening. The concert tonight is “From Bohemian Fields and Groves-The Czech Tradition of the Wind Quintet” and features…