Compact archive June 2007

Summer Festivities of Early Music in Prague

Vrtba Garden In less than a month Prague will host the 8th International Music Festival – Summer Festivities of Early Music Prague. The aim of this annual music festival is to enrich the Prague’s summer cultural life. The motto of this year’s festival ‘Journeying through the Centuries’.

The festival offers various historical styles performed on period instruments. The concerts take place in various historical monuments and interesting places of Prague (such as Brevnov Monastery, Vrtba Garden, Troja Chateau, etc.) which help create a special period atmosphere.

The first concert starts in the Congress Centre of the Czech National Bank on Saturday 14th July, the last one in ABC theatre on 8th August 2007. Tickets can be bought in the booking office of Collegium Marianum in Melantrichova 19 street, Ticketpro and Rokoko (Vaclavske namesti 38) and ABC (Vodickova 28) theatres. For more information about the festival, ticket reservations and the programme, click here.

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Large police controls on the roads this weekend

Millions of Czech pupils and students get their school report today and that’s the start of their two-month holiday. The first holiday weekend, when families leave for holiday, is usually the most tragic on the roads.

Last year there were 1573 road accidents at the first weekend of the holiday. That’s why the police want to increase the number of policemen on the roads this weekend.

On 1st July it will have been exactly one year when the Czech Republic launched a new road law. Drivers can get not only a fine, but also a certain amount of points (read more) for their traffic offences. 12 points means losing their driving licence. Even though the system is one of the strictest in Europe, many people don’t find it effective enough.

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Faust in Vysehrad's casemate in Prague

Church of St Peter and Paul in Vysehrad From 29th June to 2nd July 2007 and from 7th to 17th July 2007 you can visit one of the theatre performances of Goethe’s Faust in Vysehrad directed by David Czesany. The performances will take place in the mysterious vault Gorlice inside the Vysehrad’s Casemate.

The performances start at 20:00, tickets can be bought in Komedie theatre, Ticketpro or in the booking office of the Old Provosty in Vysehrad for 333 CZK and 366 CZK.

The Gorlice vault in Vysehrad’s casemate contains several original statues from Charles Bridge. The permanent temperature in Gorlice is 16˚C (60.8 ˚F), which is the optimal temperature for the statues. Visitors are recommended to take warm clothes with them.

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The standard of living in the Czech Republic grows

According to the statistics of Eurostat, the Statistical Office of European Communities, the Czech Republic is getting closer to the standard of living of the older member states of the European Union.

Eurostat compared the Gross Domestic Product (GDP) per inhabitant expressed in Purchasing Power Standards (PPS) in the EU countries. As the average of the EU27 is 100 PPS, the Czech Republic improve its rank from 74 PPS (26% below the average) in 2005 to 79 PPS (21% below the average) in 2006.

The GDP per person is the highest in Luxembourg (280 PPS), then in Ireland (144 PPS) and the Netherlands (131 PPS), the lowest GDP per person is in Poland (53 PPS), Romania (38 PPS) and Bulgaria (37 PPS).

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Prague receptionists will be trained to recognize terrorists

The employees of Prague hotels will learn this summer how to prevent crimes and terrorist attacks in their hotels. Courses for hotel staff are organized by the Association of Hotels and Restaurants of the Czech Republic.

The motto of the courses is “be prepared for the worst and hope for the best”. The hotel staff should be able to recognize suspicious luggage as well as suspicious people according to their behaviour. The courses will also focus on preventing pickpocketing.

However, it’s stressed that every customer should be treated as a guest and the safety of hotel guests should be provided discreetly. The project is financed from the European Social Fund, the budgets of the Czech Republic and Prague.

Check your health while you are in Prague

Prague dwellers and visitors can have their health checked near the vestibule of the metro station Narodni trida (yellow line B) this Friday. The action organized by the Czech insurance company VZP CR is a part of the charity festival Aventin Cultural Summer, that is taking place now between streets Purkynova, Vladislavova, Charvatova and Spalena and Aventin Palace.

Health workers near Narodni trida will measure the level of cholesterol, triglyceride and sugar in their blood, body fat percentage and blood pressure. The results will be examined by doctors who can suggest next steps if any of the measured data is not good.

The measurements are meant for everybody, regardless their insurance company. The action will be repeated at the same place on 26th July, 9th and 23rd August, 6th and 20th September and 4th October 2007.

Film festival in Karlovy Vary starts tomorrow

Danny DeVito The famous film festival in the spa town Karlovy Vary starts tomorrow with a gala evening. One of the stars at the opening ceremony will be actress Renee Zellweger. Even though she cancelled a press conference, she should hand over the honour prize to Bretislav Pojar as planned.

Another Hollywood star going to Karlovy Vary this year is Danny DeVito. He will be present at the closing ceremony of the festival on 7th July. DeVito will be awarded the Crystal Globe for the Outstanding Artistic Contribution to World Cinema. Together with Jake Paltrow he will also introduce the new film The Good Night.

The organizers of the festival also confirmed other guests of the festival – director Peter Bogdanovich, actress Cybill Shepherd, actor Timothy Bottoms, director Hal Hartley, director Tom DiCillo, actress Romola Garai, actor Raz Degan, actress Ellen Page, director Eran Kolirin, director Jean Becker, actor Jean-Pierre Darroussin, actor Janos Ban, director Ferzan Ozpetek or scenarist and actor Zdenek Sverak.

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Drivers can expect traffic jams on D1 in Prague

From 1st July 2007 the highway D1 leading from Prague to Brno will be partly closed due to the construction of a shoulder road. The partial closure will start at the crossroads of the highway and so called Jizni Spojka in the south of Prague.

One of the two remaining lines from Prague will be open for the transport from the opposite direction. That’s why drivers can expect traffic jams, especially in the morning peak. The road improvements should be finished by 9th September 2007.

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Prague is presented in Chicago

One of the biggest presentation of Prague and probably of the whole Czech Republic as well in the USA is now taking place in Chicago. According to Prague Mayer Pavel Bem the Days of Prague are very popular and that might have an impact on the number of tourists of the Czech capital in the future.

Pavel Bem together with his Chicago colleague Richard Daley will be present at the gala evening in Hilton Hotel this Friday, which is the last day of the presentation. Pavel Bem will launch there a new exhibition of drawings and graphics by Oldrich Kulhanek, the music will be provided by Ondrej Havelka and his Melody Makers. On Saturday, mayors Pavel Bem and Richard Daley will remember Antonin Cerman, a Czech native who became the Chicago mayer in 1930’s.

The presentation have presented famous Czech people living in the USA, then David Koller with his music band, violist Silvie Hessova with pianis Daniel Wiesner, films by Jan Hrebejk and many others.

Schwarzenberg Palace will be open again for one day

After four years of reconstruction,the Schwarzenberg Palace in the Hradcanske square near Prague Castle is going to be open to the public again. The palace will be open for now only for one day – on 12th July 2007. Then it will be open only for special events until the end of November 2007.

After that, probably in autumn this year, visitors can see a large collection of Czech Baroque art moved into the palace from St George’s Convent. The Schwarzenberg Palace will also host a collection of art from the Renaissance time and also art from the time of Rudolf II when Prague was the centre of the European culture.

Another historical palace is going to be reconstructed. The reconstruction of the neighbouring Salm Palace is planned for autumn of this year. The Schwarzenberg and Salm palaces will be connected. Salm Palace will hold an exhibition of the art collections of the 19th century.

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Burger King and Aldi head to the Czech Republic

The fast food chain Burger King will open its restaurants in the Czech Republic. It was said by the AmRest company that deals with the American Burger King about the licence to the Czech Republic.

Burger King will rival McDonald’s and KFC. First McDonald’s restaurant was here 15 years ago, now it has 72 restaurants. The first KFC restaurant followed two years later, now it has 43 restaurants. When exactly the first Burger King restaurant will be open in the Czech Republic is not clear yet.

Another big chain Aldi is coming to Prague to rival Lidl, Penny Market and Plus Discount. Aldi Czechia was put in the trade register at the beginning of June this year. Aldi runs about 7,600 shops in 14 European states. Its assortment is known for not such a high quality of goods but low prices of the products.

Brad Pitt is shooting in the streets of Prague

Brad Pitt is shooting in Prague While Angelina Jolie is busy in Prague acting in her new film Wanted, Brad Pitt loses no time to earn a bit more money here. Those who were lucky could see him near the National Theatre by the river Vltava last Monday.

A Japanese bank chose him for their new commercial set in a nice scenery of the Czech Neo-Renaissance and the river bank. Brad Pitt could have been seen walking along the National Theatre in a dark suite and with a mobile phone in his hand.

According to Aha! magazine, the shooting will take several days, so it’s still possible to meet Brad Pitt in the streets of Prague.

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Charles Square will be closed for trams this autumn

Busy Charles Square Charles Square is the largest square not only in Prague but also in the whole Czech Republic. What’s more, it’s also the biggest road junction, providing Prague inhabitants and visitors with the access to many parts of Prague.

But it will change soon. The tracks in Charles Square and its surroundings have to be maintain, that’s why all trams running via Charles Square have to be rerouted. The service disruptions will start on 17th July in Palackeho square and will continue is Palackeho bridge and Charles square until Christmas.

Right now there are ten tram lines, two bus lines and metro yellow line B going via Charles Square. The routes of the trams and buses will depend on current works on the road and might change every week. Therefore we advice you to follow the web pages of the Prague Public Transport Company at www.dpp.cz for up-to-date information.

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Four Spanish Painters exhibition in Prague

From tomorrow paintings by four painters coming from Valencia and Cartagena in Spain will represent the fine arts in the east cost of Spain to the Prague audience.

The exhibition of paintings by Joel Mestre and Santi Tena from Valencia and Angel Mateo Charris and Gonzalo Sicre from Cartagena is organized by the Czech Museum of Fine Arts in Prague together with SpainArt – the Society for the Support of Spanish Art and Cultural Exchange.

The exhibition takes places in Czech Museum of Fine Arts (Husova 21 street) until 23rd September 2007. It’s open daily (except Monday) from 10:00 to 18:00. The entrance fee is 50 CZK.

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New timetables for Prague public transport

Bus in Prague This Saturday two-month holidays start for the children in the Czech Republic. Also from that day there will be new timetables for Prague public transport. The new timetables will be displayed from 27th to 30th June, even though they start to be valid from 30th June.

The public transport service during the holiday starts for metro on 30th June and finishes on 31st August 2007. At the line A only every other train will terminate at the last station Depo Hostivar from 7:00 to 17:30. At the line B, every other train will run in the route Nove Butovice – Ceskomoravska from 6:45 to 8:30 and Smichovske nadrazi – Ceskomoravska from 8:30 to 16:00.

The tram holiday service starts on 30th July and finishes on 2nd September 2007. The intervals between two trams will be prolonged by about 2 minutes. Lines no. 7 and 13 will be out of service. Many tram lines will be rerouted during many service disruption during the summer.

The bus holiday service will be valid from 30th June to 31st August. Buses no. 143, 146, 168, 274, 277, 343, 465 and school buses will be out of service. Bus lines no. 155, 199 and 233 will be slightly changed.

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Large service disruptions in Prague during the summer

Tram crossing Prague's bridge The Prague Public Transport Company announced at the press conference today that Prague dwellers and visitors can expect 6 large tram service disruptions during the summer due to maintenance of the rails.

One of the biggest service disruptions will be in Palackeho square from 18th July until the end of October. The rails between Strossmayerovo square and Cerny most will be repaired between 6th July and 22nd August, between Radosovicka street and nadrazi Hostivar from 5th July to 9th July and at the crossroads at Klarov and Letenska street (near Malostranska metro station) from 17th August to 3rd September. Stefanikuv Bridge keeps closed until 22nd August, and the crossroad at Albertov until 18th July.

The service disruptions will be also announced in a new information campaign in the form of leaflets. The leaflets will also inform how to use the public transport to get to interesting places in Prague.

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Maximum Photography in the gardens of Prague Castle

The Southern Gardens of Prague Castle have become the open-air gallery for the fourth time already. This year you can see 34 large-screen photographs by Ivan Pinkava.

This black-and-white photographs, made between 1990 – 2004 show Pinkava’s famous portraits and less well-known standstills. The exhibition called Salome focuses on the theme of a girl and the death.

The photographs are installed in the Paradise Garden (Rajska zahrada) and in the Garden on the Ramparts (zahrada Na Valech). They are on display until 14th September 2007 for free. The gardens are open daily from 10:00 to 21:00 in June and July, to 20:00 in August and 19:00 in September. The exhibition is organized besides the popular Shakespeare Festival at Prague Castle.

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New version of the 2000 CZK banknote comes into circulation

The Czech National Bank introduced yesterday the new 2000 CZK banknote. The new 2007 version of the banknote will come into circulation on Monday 2nd July 2007. The existing versions remain valid.

The Czech National Bank, which is the only institution allowed to issue money in the Czech Republic, decided to improve the protection of the banknotes against counterfeiting. The last modification of this banknote was in 1999, thus 8 years ago.

The new version of the 2000 CZK banknote will contain more protective elements, such as a new protective strip that changes colours depending on the angle the light falls on the paper of the banknote.

The Czech National Bank plans to improve other banknotes in future years, as the Euro will be probably accepted as late as 2012. Read more about the person on the 2000 CZK banknote.

Narnia land is now in the Barrandov Studio in Prague

The Chronicles of Narnia: The Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe Prague Barrandov Studio is busy now to create the perfect requisites for the American film The Chronicles of Narnia: Prince Caspian. The film is being shot here from April to August and it costs over 100 million USD.

According to the director of Barrandov Studio, this film has been the biggest project there since Roman Polanski’s film Oliver Twist in 2004. The studios now contains a castle with a large courtyard and a big gate, towers and a drawbridge. The main stars of the film, Georgie Henley, Skandar Keynes, William Moseley and Anna Popplewell will also shot in caves or in a wood with a waterfall and a small lake, all made in Barrandov studios.

About 110 people has been working on the requisites for more than 6 months. The Czech premiere of the film is planned for May 2008.

Also another Hollywood film is being shot in Prague now. It’s a new film Wanted with Angelina Jolie and Morgan Freeman.

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Prague Troja hosts the Slalom Racing World Cup 2007

Slalom racing in Prague The best water slalom racers are heading to Prague now to compete in the ICF Slalom Racing World Cup 2007. The first contest starts on Friday 29th June, the competition will continue the whole weekend.

There are 234 racers out of 36 countries registered for the competition. The World Cup will be broadcast by Czech television (CT4 and on Sunday on CT2). The entrance is for all spectators for free.

The biggest star of the competition is the Olympic winner Elena Kalinska from Slovakia, who will defend last year’s title. Among her rivals will be Stepanka Hilgertova, the most successful slalom racer in the Czech Republic. The main hopes of the Czech team rest on the duo Jaroslav Volf – Ondrej Stepanek.

From Prague to Karlstejn by metro?!

'New' metro lines in Prague To travel to the Prague international airport or to Karlstejn by metro? Even though it’s not possible now (and in the near future), some travellers might have thought so yesterday.

An unknown person covered the schema of metro lines in several trains of Prague metro with a sellotape. Travellers could therefore read that green line A terminated in Karlstejn instead of Dejvicka station and goes via Prague airport.

Even thought the original stops were visible through the tape, it looked quite reliable. The conclusion is obvious – don’t trust everything you see.

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The number of Prague monuments is limited for people in wheelchair

Old Town Hall Tower Many Prague monuments are not accessible for people in wheelchairs. Let’s name the most popular ones – White Tower, Daliborka Tower, Old Town Bridge Tower or Powder Tower. Even though the situation is getting better, there are still many limitations for disabled people in Prague.

Among those monuments that can be visited by people in wheelchair are Old Royal Palace, Queen Anne’s Summer Palace, St George’s Basilica, Ball Game Hall, Imperial Stables, Rudolf’s Gallery, Spanish Hall, Prague Castle Picture Gallery and the gardens at Prague Castle.

Disabled people can also enjoy the view from the Petrin View Tower, Old Town Hall Tower and Vysehrad.

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Top restaurants in Prague for gourmets

Czech weekly magazine Euro published a chart of the best restaurants in Prague. The testing was made anonymously by several experts who were evaluating the restaurants from five different angles.

The maximum points, that could be given to one restaurant, was 60. Maximum of 20 points could be given for the quality of meals and drinks, 10 points for the atmosphere and aesthetics, 10 points for the personnel’s behaviour, 10 points for place setting and 10 points for the quality of the menu.

The best restaurants are Flambée, La Dégustation, Le terroir and Zlata Praha, gaining all 60 points. The complete list can be found in the current issue of magazine Euro. Another evaluation of Prague’s restaurant can be found in the Maurer’s Grand Restaurant.

Ryanair will fly to Prague soon

Irish low-budget air carrier Ryanair is going to fly to Prague by the end of October 2007. The company wants to create a connection between Prague and five European metropolises.

Ryanair will fly to Irish capital Dublin, Dutch Eindhoven, German Dusseldorf and English Bournemouth once a week. Three times a week to Swedish metropolis Stockholm. Ryanair already provides a connection between Brno and London.

Besides Ryanair, another low-budget air carrier, SkyEurope Airlines, is going to fly to Prague. New lines could be therefore with Bratislava, Kosice, Vienna or Budapest.

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Thousands of protesters filled up the Wenceslas Square

About 30,000 people from trade unions came to Prague on Saturday to protest against the new key reforms introduced by the government. According to the protesters, the reforms will advantage high income workers and disadvantage middle and low income people.

The protesters met in Prague-Zizkov and continued to the Wenceslas Square in the centre of the city shortly after 11:30. Their march through to city closed one of the most important road arteries for several minutes.

Equipped with whistles, balloons, caps and banners they shouted such mottos as “Shame on the government”. Several politicians of the opposition party joined the protest, starting with the leader of the Social Democrats Jiri Paroubek. The demonstration took about an hour and was finished by a heavy rain.

Mondrian and Kupka' paintings together in Prague's gallery

Famous works of two co-founders of the abstract painting who lived at the same time but never met – Dutch Piet Mondrian and Czech Frantisek Kupka – are displayed in the Museum Kampa in Prague these days.

Visitors can admire 18 paintings by Piet Mondrian from all periods of his life and compare them with the works of Frantisek Kupka. Kupka is maybe not so well known abroad as Mondrian, but his works belongs among pure abstract art.

Museum Kampa (U Sovovych mlynu) is situated near the river Vltava. The exhibition is open daily from 10:00 to 18:00 until 29th July 2007. The curator of this exhibition is Meda Mladkova.

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Bird flu confirmed in the Czech Republic again

Highly dangerous virus of bird flu was found in a private farm in Tisova in the west Bohemia. The turkeys there were infected with H5N1 virus that is transmissible to people.

The turkeys in that farm were probably infected from straw used as a bed for the birds. The straw comes from a nearby haystack that was accessible to any wild birds. All the poultry in the farm are destined to be killed as well as the poultry in the whole village.

The poultry would have been sold in more than one month as they didn’t have the required weight yet. They were in the farm for over two months. As the virus kills quickly, it’s almost impossible that any infected meat has been sold.

The first case of bird flu in the Czech Republic was reported in March 2006, the last one in May 2006. The Czech government approved a pandemic plan in case the virus spreads from birds to humans.

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Transportation in Prague disrupted tomorrow because of protests

Already about 50,000 trade unionists are expected in Prague tomorrow to protest against the new governmental reforms announced in April but still not approved. The large number of people will have an effect on the transport in the city.

From 9:00 to 13:00 there will be no trams running in Prague-Zizkov. Tram lines no. 5, 9 and 26 will be rerouted, bus line no. 135 will terminate in namesti Miru. Read information boards on the stops.

If you plan to drive a car, better avoid the arterial in the direction to D1. The diversion is lead via Klimentska street, nabr. Ludvika Svobody, Na Frantisku, nam. Jana Palacha, Krizovnicka street, Smetanovo nabrezi, Jiraskovo namesti, Resslova street and Jecna street. Just follow the signposts.

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Mafioso party or a houseboat party in Prague tonight

If you don’t know what to do in Prague tonight, we’d like to inform you about two parties held in the city. The first one is a party on a houseboat on the Vltava river, the other one is Mafioso party in the city centre.

The houseboat is called U Bukanyra and right now it’s anchored on the nabrezi L. Svobody under the Stefanikuv bridge near botel Albatros. The Shadowboat party will offer drumandbass, many cocktails and a special atmosphere. The party starts at 21:00 and is for free.

Another possibility is to go to the Mafioso party where you can compete in the contest for the best Mafioso dress. You can look forward to dance performances of swing, step, tango and salsa. The party takes place in Tropison Club (on the 5th floor of the shopping centre Kotva in namesti Republiky) at 22:00.

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Sculpture Grande returns to Prague

Sculpture Grande Prague For the fifth time Prague hosts the open-air festival of sculptures in the centre of the city. Sculpture Grande Prague 07 will present works of seven world’s famous artists whose works are regularly on display in significant exhibitions all over the world.

Unlike previous years, the sculptures are placed more in the Old Town and namesti Republiky, instead of the Wenceslas Square. The chosen artists are Stephan Balkenhol, Sylvie Fleury, Julian Opie, Jean-Jacques Ory, Briggitte Kowanz, Erwin Wurm and Jiri David.

The festival is accompanied with the competition Generation Next where young people from the Czech Republic, Slovakia and Austria present their sculptures in namesti Republiky. Sculpture Grande Prague 07 will be held until 30th September 2007.

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Come to see backstage of the Ruzyne Airport in Prague

Ruzyne Airport Are you curious about how a big international airport operates? You have a chance to look “behind the scenes” of the Ruzyne Airport in Prague, the biggest international airport in the Central Europe. There are regular tours for the public, starting in June.

The tour lasts 1.5 hour. You will see the terminals, get to know about the system of airport runways and you will see some things that regular passengers never can – such as planes taking off or landing, from a close distance. A tour of the Rescue and Fire Station is also included.

These tours take place on Wednesdays and Thursdays at 3 pm and also every first and third Sunday in a month at 10 am and 1 pm. A ticket for an adult costs 150,- CZK, children 3 – 15 years of age pay 70,- CZK, as well as senior citizens, students and disabled people. A family ticket (2 adults, 2 children) costs 330,- CZK.

You can take photos or make an amateur video during the tour. For more information and for booking a visit, click here.

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Sonic Youth will perform in Prague in August

the lastest album Rather Ripped The cult band Sonic Youth, which has changed the sound of rock´n´roll in the ´80s and ´90s, will play in the Divadlo Archa in Prague on 25th August.

Unlike their contemporaries in the ´80s, Sonic Youth have played an unconventional rock music, combining the experiments of Velvet Underground with post-punk influences. Using dissonance and feedback, they created a guitar noise that influenced many bands – especially later in the ´90s. The most important albums of this era were EVOL, Sister and Daydream Nation.

Sonic Youth are going to visit Prague again after 11 years. The venue Divadlo Archa (Archa Theater) is situated in Na Porici Street 26, Prague 1. The show starts at 8 pm and a ticket costs 995,- CZK. Tickets are available at Ticketpro.

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The Czech Republic has more than 10.3 million inhabitants

The number of inhabitants of the Czech Republic grows – it is more than 10.3 million at the present time. It is caused especially by a growing number of immigrants, but also by a higher number of born children.

There are more born children, because the mothers were mostly born in the ´70s, the years of population boom in the former Czechoslovakia. However, the average number of born children is still very low – it is only 1.4 per one mother. That´s one of the lowest numbers in the world. According to demographers, the politicians are to blame for this situation, because they don´t support young families enough.

The growth of the population in the Czech Republic is therefore largely caused by immigrants. They are mostly from Ukraine, Vietnam and Slovakia.

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New railway tunnels in Prague already in 2008

Main Railway Station in Prague The public transport in Prague will change a lot, when the new railway tunnels will be built under the Vitkov Hill. Now it seems, that these tunnels will be finished much sooner, than was expected – probably already at the end of 2008.

The new railways will be much used for travelling within Prague, which is not usual at the present time. The tunnels will connect the Main Railway Station (Hlavni nadrazi) and Masarykovo nadrazi with districts in the north of Prague – Liben, Vysocany, Holesovice. The trams and metro should therefore be not as overcrowded, as they are now. The new railways will also be the fastest way to travel from one end of Prague to the other.

It is the most important railway building in Prague since the World War II. The building company Skanska promises, that people will have the chance to try the new railways already next year.

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New airport for Prague?

Prague has just one airport at the present time – the Ruzyne Airport. However, this can change in few years. There are plans, that a new international airport will be built in Vodochody very close to Prague. It could be open in 2009 or 2010.

There is an aircraft factory in Vodochody and its landing runway will be probably made the new commercial airport. It is not supposed to compete with Ruzyne: around 1.5 million passengers should pass its terminal a year, which is about 10% of Ruzyne passengers. The airport at Vodochody would focus on low-cost airlines, such as easyJet or SkyEurope.

The citizens of Vodochody aren´t happy about the plan. They are afraid of noise and of many cars, that would drive to the airport.

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The National Library design acclaimed in the UK

The controversial octopus design of the future National Library in Prague has won an award at the Summer Exhibition in London. This traditional show of contemporary art is organized by British Royal Academy of Arts.

The design by Jan Kaplicky and his Future Systems atelier has won the most important award in the architecture category, “A. J. Bovis Award”. The jury appreciated the technical perfection of the future building, as well as its extraordinary appearance.

The design of the National Library in Prague has been discussed a lot in the Czech Republic, even president Vaclav Klaus expressed his reservations about the design.

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Festival of Argentine tango in Prague

Tango Alchemie is an international festival of Argentine tango, which takes place in Prague between 21st and 24th June. The organizers try to connect the festival with the mystical atmosphere of Prague – they say that alchemy is something that happens in tango, too.

The idea is that tango symbolizes the connection of male and female element, which is inspired by alchemist philosophy. The festival will be held at several places in Prague: at Slovansky island, in the Cerna labut café, Michna Palace and Gröbovka.

The festival is accompanied by a photography exhibition in the Michna Palace and by workshops. You can register for them and see the complete programme here.

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Rain damaged a theater and a cinema in Prague

The Theater at Dlouha Street (Divadlo v Dlouhe) and Atlas cinema in Prague are out of operation at the present time. The reason is the heavy rain at the end of the last week, which flooded both venues.

The Theater at Dlouha Street was damaged by water, which got in through the roof. The theater had to cancel the nearest performances, including some of the Nine Gates festival. It could be back in order at the end of this week.

The situation in the Atlas cinema (Sokolovska Street 1) is worse, there will be probably no screenings till the beginning of July. Even telephones don´t work in the cinema. The café is closed too, but it should open next week.

United Islands of Prague starts tomorrow

For United Islands of Prague 2008 click here

If you are in Prague these days, don´t miss the music festival United Islands of Prague, which starts on 21st June and continues till Saturday 23rd. Especially the Saturday programme, with 6 different stages on the islands on the river Vltava, will be interesting.

The festival starts on Thursday with concerts in numerous music clubs in Prague, all of them with free entry. On Saturday, the festival moves to the islands – the Strelecky, Slovansky, Detsky islands and the riverside Janackovo nabrezi. The admission is free, except Manes at the Slovansky island (100,- CZK).

Every island will belong to a different music style:
Strelecky island – main stage, ethno and folk stage
Slovansky island – jazz and blues stage
Detsky island – hip hop stage
Manes – fusion and experiment stage
Janackovo nabrezi – Filter Talents Stage

United Islands of Prague gives a chance to not so famous, but nevertheless interesting bands and musicians. This year, there will be for example Socalled Orchestra, Warren Suicide, All Stars Grey or Mr. Review among the performing bands. As for the Czech bands, you can hear P.S.H., Monika Naceva, Sunflower Caravan and others. Learn more about the festival here.

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Photographs with a flavour of faraway countries

House at the Golden Ring An interesting photography exhibition starts today in the House at the Golden Ring near the Old Town Square in Prague. There is a retrospective of Bohumil Krcil – an exile Czech photographer, whose works captured atmosphere of several different countries around the world.

Krcil´s photographs document for example Afghanistan before the invasion of the Soviets, life in the Indian part of Himalayas with its hashish culture, or Manhattan of the ´80s. His New York photographs “Say No to Drugs” were well known around the USA.

You can also see Krcil´s correspondence and two documentaries about him at the exhibition. It is organized by City Gallery Prague and it will last till 16th September 2007. The admission is 80,- CZK, reduced 40,- CZK.

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Prague is more expensive than Miami

Mercer Human Resource Consulting published another annual Cost of Living Survey showing the most and the least expensive cities in the world. New York is the base city scoring 100 points, more expensive cities are ranked higher, less expensive cities got lower number. The survey compares cost of over 200 items, such as housing, food, transport, clothing, etc.

The most expensive city (out of 143 cities) remains Moscow (134.4p), London (126.3p) is in second position followed by Seoul (122.4p) and Tokyo (122.1). The less expensive city ranked in this survey is Asuncion (50p) in Paraguay.

Prague (85.6p) moved, thanks to strengthening of the Czech crown, to 49th position from the 50th in 2006. Our east neighbour Slovakia (89.2) climbed 17 places to 31st position. Such cities as Washington, Miami, Chicago, Zagreb, Budapest, Warsaw or Lisbon ranked even lower than Prague. Read more about the survey here.

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Attractive science in the streets of Prague

‘Science on the streets’ (Veda v ulicich) is a part of the project ‘Czech Brains’ (Ceska hlava) whose aim is to present the latest results in science and modern technologies in an easy and attractive way to the large public. ‘Science on the streets’ takes place in 6 different places in Prague on 22nd (9:00 -18:00) and 23rd June 2007 (9:00 – 17:00).

In the namesti Jiriho z Podebrad (metro green line A) you can test your partner on the lie detector, to try safe speleoalpinism, to watch the Sun with special binoculars or to see electric vehicles. Go to the Namesti Miru (metro green line A) if you want to draw your own 3-D picture in various colours, to see a unique collection of shoes for diabetics or to see several physical experiments in a tent.

Teach a robot the correct behaviour in the National Museum or watch robots sorting the wastes in the vestibule of the metro station Muzeum. In Namesti Republiky you can visit a student town and learn more about Czech universities. You can also donate blood, have your shirt ironed by a servant – ‘dressman’ or see a crash test of a motorcycle. In the building of FJFI CVUT (Brehova 1 street) you can see an exhibition on the research of thermonuclear fusion.

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J. K. Rowling points out the situation in Czech children's houses

Writer J. K. Rowling, the author of popular Harry Potter, sent a letter to the Czech newspaper Mlada Fronta DNES after her short stay in Prague on 28th and 29th May this year. In the letter she points out that the Czech Republic has the highest number of children in children’s homes.

Rowling is interested in the situation of children in children’s houses and other institutions for children after an article published in British newspaper Sunday Times in 2004 about children in the Czech Republic kept in cages. Afterwards she sent a letter to the president of the Czech Republic Vaclav Klaus.

To improve the situation and help children get into foster families easier she wants to establish a branch of her organization Children’s High Level Group in the Czech Republic. Her critics of Czech social system have provoked various reactions. The Minister for Human Rights Dzamila Stehlikova likes the idea of sending experts of the organization to the Czech Republic. On the other hand, the Minister of Social Affairs Petr Necas finds it inappropriate and claims that Czech people know what to do themselves. They just need more time.

Prague Royal Route for blind people

Blind people can learn more about the monuments at the historical Route Route in Prague. A new Prague guide was published, but this time in the Braille writing accompanied with plastic reliefs of the most famous palaces and houses.

The book was published in 900 pieces. However, the books won’t be sold in bookshops. They will be sent into specialized libraries, as well as to schools for blind and weak-eyed people. The books can be seen also in the information bureaus of the municipal council and in the Prague Tourist Information Centres.

Soon there will be also maps of Prague for blind people, as well as maps of the historical city reserve for people on wheelchairs. The municipal authorities also plans to place bronze models and reliefs in the centre of Prague for easier orientation of blind people.

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Genesis with Phil Collins in Prague tomorrow

Phil Collins will perform in Prague Fans of the Genesis and Phil Collins may have the last change to see their favourite musicians together. Genesis together with Phil Collins who left the band 15 years ago will perform in Prague tomorrow.

Their big show is planned on the parking place in front of the Sazka Arena (metro yellow line B, station Ceskomoravska). If you didn’t buy tickets, don’t despair, the concert will be audible far away.

Tony Banks, Phil Collins and Mike Rutherford, the main musicians of the ‘current’ band Genesis, started their tour 14 days ago. Their last tour together was in 1992, the band split in 2000.

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Prostitutes leave the streets of Prague

Less and less prostitutes can be seen on the streets of Prague in the centre of the city. It’s caused by a new city edict that prohibits offering erotic services on the streets of Prague and by more frequent police controls.

Nevertheless, the prostitutes didn’t disappear from the city centre totally, they are more in night clubs, the number of which is still rising. There are 24 night clubs that can be found just in the Wenceslas Square and its neighbourhood. The clubs are visited by about 2600 people daily, especially by tourists. Six out of ten prostitutes are of Czech nationality, but there are also many women from Bulgaria, Ukraine or former states of the Soviet Union.

The police control night clubs in Prague about 10 times a week. They focus mainly on illegal immigrants and whether no alcohol is served to people under age.

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The National Theatre in Prague might perform Havel's latest play

Ex-president of the Czech Republic Vaclav Havel The National Theatre in Prague is dealing now with the ex-president Vaclav Havel about his newest play called Odchazeni (Leaving). Havel finished the play during his 4-month stay in the USA.

Even though the story of the play is not known yet, it’s said that it might have a King Lear theme and it might show the problems that occur when leaving power.

The director of the play could be David Radok and one of the main characters Jan Triska, who acted in several Hollywood movies (People vs. Larry Flynt, Ronin..). If everything goes all right, Vaclav Havel’s latest play might be on the programme of the National Theatre in June 2008.

Sabotage of the Czech TV broadcast

A group of people sabotaged the broadcast of the Czech TV channel CT2 on Sunday morning during the programme Panorama showing scenes of various Czech scenery online.

Astonished viewers could see a nuclear mushroom cloud spreading over Krkonose for a few seconds. There was an internet address of the group Zhotoven at the bottom of the screen. Members of Zhotoven connected their laptop with a TV camera at Cerny Dvur at Krkonose Mountains.

The Czech TV announced that they would take action against the group for trespassing and a hoax that scared thousands of people. That’s been the first time that the broadcast of the Czech TV was tampered.

The Prague Museum Night attracted a record number of visitors

The Rudolfinum The 4th Prague Museum Night held last Saturday was very successful. Not only did it offer a record number of institutions but it also attracted a record number of visitors – 171,000, which is 11,000 more than the last year.

Among the most popular museums and galleries were the main building of the National Museum in Wenceslas Square (about 28,700 visitors) and the newly opened Museum of Charles Bridge. The National Museum attracts besides its permanent exhibitions also to the contemporary exhibition The Hunters of Mammoths. To enter the Museum of Charles Bridge people didn’t mind to wait in a queue that stretched to the Old Town Bridge Tower.

Among other popular institutions were the Riding School of Prague Castle, Queen Anne’s Summer Palace, Clementinum, the Rudolfinum, or the Spanish Synagogue. The transportation between the institutions was provided for free by eight bus lines.

Ruth Ellen Gruber presents her book in Prague today

Jewish Town Hall Ruth Ellen Gruber, the author of National Geographic Jewish Heritage Travel: A Guide to Eastern Europe will present this illustrated book in the Jewish Museum in Prague at 18:00 today.

The book summarizes almost 20 years of Gruber’s exploration of Jewish heritage in cities, towns and remote villages in eastern and central Europe. The presentation will be given in English with Czech interpretation. The entrance fee is 20 CZK.

The presentation will take place in the Education and Cultural Centre (Maiselova 15 street) of the Jewish Museum situated in the heart of former Jewish quarter across from the Jewish Town Hall and the Old Jewish Cemetery.

The Czech Republic is on the good way to Schengen

The European Commisioner Franco Frattini visited Prague to discuss the plan to implement the Schengen Agreement in the Czech Republic at the turn of this year. According to his words, the Czech Republic is on the good way to join the system which enables travelling between participating states without border controls.

As all neighbours of the Czech Republic will be in the Schengen area, the only border with other countries will be international airports. Frattini checked the security measures at the largest international airport in Prague Ruzyne yesterday.

Frattini visited places that are closed to the public, such as the police control centre or the room where suspicious passports are checked by experts. He was also positive about the work of police men with dogs on board searching for any traces of explosive materials.

Prague Quadriennale 2007 started

Prague hosts the 11th 11th International Exhibition of Scenography and Theatre Architecture Prague Quadriennale 2007. It’s the largest event of this kind in the world showing contemporary stage designs and theatre architecture.

Participants can exchange experience, learn new trends, meet interesting people and try new working methods during a large number of workshops. Many performances take place on the streets of Prague. One of the visual performance (called X-times people chair) is held today: you can see seniors doing their usual daily activities, but sitting on a chair hanging 6 meters high.

Tonight hundreds of participants of PQ from many countries all over the world will march in carnival masks through the centre of Prague to Ovocny trh. If you want to know more about this event as well as the full programme of Prague Quadriennale 2007, go to www.pq.cz.

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Tibetan Lama Karmapa is coming to Prague

The head of the Karma Kagyu Lineage of Tibetan Buddhism, H.H. 17th Gyalwa Karmapa Trinlay Thaye Dorje, is coming to Prague to give lectures on karma – cause and effect and an empowerment on the 2nd Karmapa Karma Pakshi.

The way of thinking that the head of Karma Kagyu, one of the four major schools of Tibetan Buddhism, represents has thousands of supporters in Europe. More information about Karmapa can be found here.

Karmapa will give a teaching in the T-Mobile Arena in Prague Exhibition Ground tomorrow at 17:00. Tickets can be bought via Ticketpro for 450 CZK. Before Karmapa’s lecture, you can attend the lecture of Lama Ole Nydahl: Introduction to Buddhism. The programme will be held in English with Czech translation.

Czech outlet of Microsoft is the best again

The Czech outlet of Microsoft is very successful. For the second time in less than one year it was awarded as the best national outlet of Microsoft. It’s the first time that one outlet managed to defend its best position in two consecutive periods.

The award was given for the third quarter of fiscal year 2007. Among the best three outlets are also Brasilia and the region of the southeast of Europe (Romania, Bulgaria, Slovakia and the states of former Yugoslavia).

Microsoft employs about 250 people in the Czech Republic. They managed to introduce successfully the new operation system Windows Vista and the office application suite Microsoft Office 2007. They also managed to lower the software piracy thanks to the Windows Genuine Advantage Notification.

Microsoft opened its first Center for the Support of Mobile Technologies and also Microsoft IT Academy on Strahov Silicon Hill in the Czech Republic. Microsoft checked more than 750,000 computers in the Czech Republic in the first quarter of 2007, 18% of them contained illegal copies of Microsoft’s operation system.

Indonesian Night in Prague tonight

The central building of the Municipal Library in Prague Indonesian Night is a part of the Many Colours of Asia festival that is held right now in Prague. It’s a joint work of 13 embassies to promote Asia culture and art to people in Prague.

Today you can learn more about Indonesia, the country with thousands of little islands. Indonesian Night will present traditional music, dances, photographs, paintings, carpets and many others.

The Indonesian Night is held in the Municipal Library in Prague from 18:00 tonight. Even though there is a free entrance, contact the Embassy of Indonesia on tel: 257 214 388 in advance.

Tomorrow you can learn about Korea, on Sunday about Malaysia. You can check the list of events here)/zdroj.aspx?typ=2&Id=72693&sh=-386489256. The festival will finish on 5th July 2007.

Series of concerts in the Wallenstein Garden in Prague

The Senate of the Czech Republic will start soon a series of concerts and cultural events within the Cultural Summer in the splendid area of the Wallenstein Garden in the Lesser Town in Prague.

Concerts will be held every Thursday evening in the Sala Terrena from 21st June until 16th September 2007. Everybody can enjoy the concerts in the illuminated garden and what’s more, there is no entrance fee. The Cultural Summer is held under the auspices of the Chairman of the Senate of the Czech Republic Premysl Sobotka.

During the final concert of the Cultural Summer visitors can meet Czech senators and see the exhibition Albrecht von Wallenstein And His Times. For more information about the programme write to infocentrum@senat.cz.

Snoop Dogg will perform in Prague

Read concert of Snoop Dogg in 2008

Snoop Dogg Famous rebel Snoop Dogg will perform for the first time in Prague. His concert in Prague Sazka Arena will be a part of his European tour.

Snoop Dogg, born Calvin Cordozar Broadus Jr., is a famous American rapper, record producer and actor. His debut album Doggystyle (1993) was sold in more than 1.5 million copies in the world. He has been nominated eight times for Grammy Awards.

Tickets for his Prague concert, which will be held on 11th July 2007 (20:00), can be bought via Sazkaticket (until 9th July) for 1.190 CZK, 1.150 CZK and 990 CZK.

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Only a half of Czech people have Slavonic ancestors

Genetic tests made by Genomac International L.t.d revealed that only 51% of Czech people have genetic characteristics that are typical for Slavonic people. Other Czech people have Romanic, Germanic, Jewish, Finno-Ugric or other ancestors.

The test of DNA can show what places on the earth our distant ancestors came from or whether we are descendants of any noble families. The tests are made from saliva samples sent to the laboratory. The whole process takes few weeks and it costs 2450 CZK.

The Genomac company has already tested 5,000 people and made a data bank from the results. People with similar genetic profile can contact their ‘relatives’ through this data bank. According to the director of Genomac Marek Minarik, scientists will be able to say soon what illnesses we are predisposed to with our genetic profile.

The concert of George Michael cancelled definitely

George Michael's concert was cancelled George Michael’s concert planned for 2nd June was cancelled due to an accident of one of the trucks transporting the equipment for the show. The organizers of the concert planned to give a substitute date for the concert, probably at the end of summer, but finally there be no concert at all.

The undamaged tickets can be returned at the place they were bought. The full refund of the ticket price will be given by the Ticketpro agency from 25th June 2007.

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Museum Night 2007 in Prague this weekend

Inside of the National Museum Already this weekend, on Saturday 16th June to be exact, you can visit many museums and galleries for free or for a symbolic price during the Prague Museum Night. Besides current or long-term exhibition, there is a rich additional programme in all the institutions.

Visitors can see e.g. the newly opened Museum of Charles Bridge showing the history of this famous monument, the halls of the National Library in Prague, or exhibitions in one of the buildings of the Prague City Gallery.

As for the additional programme, the Rudolfinum will offer concerts of Dvorak’s symphony performed by the Czech Student Orchestra conducted by Marko Ivanovic (starts at 20:30 and 22:30). Police Museum will show police motorcycles or Sherlock Holmes cases. You can chose from more than 70 events that evening.

There is a free transportation between the institutions. More information about the institutions, their programme and the transportation can be found at www.muzejninoc.cz or in a form of a leaflet in front of the National Museum and Rudolfinum tomorrow and on Saturday.

Water transportation under the Charles Bridge

Prague panorama From next Monday people living in the centre of Prague (Prague 1) can use a new means of transport to get from one river bank to the other. Small boats will take them to the other side of the river near the Charles Bridge for free.

Prague inhabitants don’t have to walk over the bridge which is crowded by tourists. The sail on the boat with a canvas roof will take about 20 minutes and will include a refreshment. The free transport will be available for Prague 1 dwellers between 11:00 and 12:00 and 18:00 and 19:00 and at the weekends at 10:30, 11:00, 18:00 and 19:00.

Inhabitants of other parts of Prague and tourists can travel as well, however, the sail will cost them 290 CZK. The city also plans to renew the water transportation between Slovansky, Strelecky and Detsky Islands.

Legendary Joe Cocker will come to Prague

Joe Cocker will perform in Prague One of the legends of pop music and one of the living musicians who performed in Woodstock, Joe Cocker, will come to Prague to present the songs from his latest album Hymn For My Sole.

Joe Cocker with his characteristic voice will perform in Prague Sazka Arena (near metro station Ceskomoravska) on 12th December 2007. Tickets between 1290 CZK and 790 CZK are available from tomorrow via www.sazkaticket.cz.

Joe Cocker was born in 1944. He has released more than 20 albums during his long music career. He performed in the Czech Republic for the first time in Ostrava in 1998, then he came back to Brno in 2000.

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The presidency of the V4 goes to the Czech Republic

The Czech Republic will take over the presidency of the Visegrad Group (V4) on Monday 18th June 2007. The Czech government seated in Prague will discuss the priorities of the Czech presidency on Monday’s meeting.

Among the priorities will be the visa-free regime for travelling to the USA for the members of the V4, joining the Schengen system, the coordination of activities of the V4 members or supporting democracy and human rights in the world.

The Visegrad Group consisting of the Czech Republic, Slovakia, Poland and Hungary was founded in 1991 with the vision of joint work in many fields of common interest within all-European integration.

The Terry Fox Run in Prague today

Prague, as well as other towns in the Czech Republic, hold the Terry Fox Run, the charity event to support cancer research. This event is organized in many countries all over the world and it has become probably the most famous run for charity.

The Terry Fox Run starts at 16:00 today in Kunratice park in Prague 4-Kunratice. The registration begins at 15:00. Other chances to participate in this event in Prague are on 15th June in Prague 8 – Dablice, on 8th September in Prague 6 and on 13th September in Prague 17-Repy and Prague 13-Luziny. Click here for the list of runs in the Czech Republic.

The first symbolic Terry Fox Run was organized in the Czech Republic by the employees of the Canadian Embassy in Prague in 1992. The first official run was held a year later. This year there will be 154 runs in the Czech Republic.

Roxy Birthday Night in Prague tonight

One of the most popular clubs in Prague, Roxy (Dlouha 33, Prague 1), will celebrate today the ‘15th birthday’. Big celebrations will take part not only in the club but also in a large tram the capacity of which is about 160 people.

The tram, equipped by a bar, a sound system and lighting show will start on namesti Miru (you can get there by metro green line A) at 22:00 tonight. After 2-hour-long journey around Prague it will stop in front of the club where the party will continue.

If you don’t feel like taking the tram, the programme in the club starts already at 21:00 and the entrance is until 24:00 for free. The music will be provided by the best DJ’s of Roxy club.

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Women's mud wrestling in Prague

If you like watching mud wrestling of pretty women, visit Obcanska plovarna in Prague (U plovarny 8, Prague 1) on Friday 15th June 2007. Many girls will compete not only in mud wrestling but also in a beauty contest.

There will be a nice view not only at the competitors but also at the jury – it will consist of many former winners of beauty contests. The programme will offer music performances, a gladiator show and tantric massages for women. You can also try your luck in a large erotic tombola offering more than 150 prizes.

The action starts at 19:00. The entrance fee is for men 200 CZK and for woman for free. Tickets can be bought via www.ticketpro.cz (I. zapas v bahne). At the gate everyone will get Cannabis ice tea, Leo magazine and Nei report for free.

73,3% of Czech people are against the Bodies... The Exhibition

Bodies... The Exhibition Crowds of people visit the Bodies…The Exhibition every day. They can see black lungs of a smokers, the system of muscles or shapes of many human organs. But still, 28,1% of Czech people find the exhibition barbarous and want to have it closed.

A new survey made for MF DNES by Median agency shows that another 45% of Czech people don’t like the idea. Only 26.7% likes the exhibition and want to see it personally.

There have been many protests about the exhibition so far. The opponents claim that the exhibition is not ethical and there’s no proof that the people, whose bodies are now shown, agreed with it. The rector of Charles University recommended to students of medicine not to work there but many of them are still working there as guides.

Long-range weather forecast for Prague (June, July)

If you plan to visit Prague during the next month, we have a long-range weather forecast for you. The temperatures in May are over the average and it will probably stay the whole summer.

Heat waves with lack of rain will be followed by storms and heavy rains with local floods. From 11th to 20th May expect sunny weather with numerous rain showers and storms. The average night temperature will be around 15 ˚C (59.0 ˚F), the highest day temperature will reach 31 ˚C (87.8 ˚F).

From 21st to 30th June expect mainly cloudy weather with light rain showers and storms. At the end of this period rain showers will appear only occasionally. Night temperatures will be about 12 ˚C (53.6 ˚F), the highest day temperatures between 19 and 25˚C (66.2 and 77.0 ˚F), later on between 22 and 28 ˚C (71.6 and 82.4 ˚F).

From 1st to 10th July the weather will be somewhat cloudy with night temperature about 14 ˚C (57.2 ˚F) and day temperatures between 23 and 29 ˚C (73.4 and 84.2 ˚F). Anyway, no long-range weather forecast is 100% accurate.

If you are looking for Prague weather forecast, you will find it here.

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Anonymous call closed metro station Dejvicka

The metro station Dejvicka, the terminal of the green line B and the changing place for buses to the airport, was closed for two hours yesterday due to a bomb alert.

An anonymous man called yesterday at 14:00 to the police that there is a bomb in the metro station that is about to explode in about 90 minutes. The police evacuated the station and started to search the area, but nothing was found.

For two hours the trains had to stop in the station Hradcanska. The service was renewed short before 16:00. The police is searching for the offender now.

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Big plans for the right riverbank in Prague

Masarykovo nabrezi in Prague Tens of restaurants and cafes, beaches, children’s playgrounds, a boat rental or a theatre stage on the water will grow on the right bank of the Vltava river. The councilmen of districts Prague 1 and 2 decided to improve the riverbank and make it a pleasant place where to spend a free time.

The project is called the Vltava Promenade. The designers got themselves inspired by many European cities, e.g. by beaches along the Seine, stands for bikes in Amsterdam or street lamps in Venice.

The boat rental, restaurants, bike stands, as well as the first construction work should appear on the riverbank this year. The city also plans a “water tram” – a boat that will be an alternative to the city transport from Vysehrad to Stvanice. The whole project should be finished in 2010.

Star guests at the film festival in Karlovy Vary

Director Eli Roth who debuted with the low-budget horror Cabin Fever will come to the international film festival in Karlovy Vary to introduce his new film Hostel II (partly filmed in the Czech Republic) as well as Quentin Tarantino’s film Grindhouse:Death Proof in which he performed the title role.

Besides Renee Zellweger visitors can also look forward to 20-year-old Ellen Page known for films Marion Bridge, Wilby Wonderful or X-Men: The Last Stand. In Karlovy Vary she will personally present a film by Bruce McDonald The Tracey Fragments.

Other important guest of the festival will be Hal Hartley who will come to Karlovy Vary after 12 years to present the premiere of his latest film Fay Grim. Monte Hellman will come to Karlovy Vary with his retrospective dedicated to New Hollywood Two-Lane Blacktop. George Hickenlooper will introduce his latest film Factory Girl – a bibliography about the life of a close friend of Andy Warhol.

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Symphonic concerts at the III courtyard of Prague Castle

III courtyard of Prague Castle Four concerts of classical music will resound the III courtyard of Prague Castle and will offer a great atmosphere as well as good acoustics. The concerts are held under the auspices of the First Lady Livia Klausova.

The first and the last concerts will be performed by Prague Symphony Orchestra, conducted by Jiri Kout. The first concert (28th – 29th June 2007) will present the composition by Carl Orff Carmina Burana, the last one (9th September 2007) Dvorak’s Symphony No. 9 “From the New World” (Op. 95).

The Philharmonic of Hradec Kralove conducted by Ondrej Kukal (25th July 2007) will perform Smetana’s Vltava and Vysehrad and Dvorak’s Slavonic Dances. The third concert (21st August 2007) will commemorate the 21st August 1968 (occupation of the Czech Republic by armies of the Warsaw Pact). The Czech Chamber Philharmonic Orchestra of Pardubice conducted by Leos Svarovsky will play Schubert’s Symphony No. 6 in C Major and Mendelsohn – Barthody’s Symphony No. 4 in A Major “Italian”.

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Czech Railways has changed the timetables

From yesterday people in the Czech Republic travel according to a new timetable of Czech Railways. However, the difference between the old one and the new one is not so big.

The biggest changes are in the regions around Usti nad Laben and Karlovy Vary. The changes concern especially the departure and arrivals of trains, the number of trains stays almost the same.

From today travellers can also use special discounts – CD Net and RegioNet which enables them to travel for the whole day (in the whole country or in one district) for special price. For planning your journey online, click here.

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Today is the Tax Freedom Day in the Czech Republic

Today is the Tax Freedom Day in the Czech Republic, which theoretically means that Czech people stopped working for the state treasure and started to earn money for themselves. In other words, they have earned enough to pay the annual tax burden.

The Tax Freedom Day in the Czech Republic is counted by the Liberal Institute. In comparison with the last year, the Tax Freedom Day came three days earlier this year (after 161 instead of 164 days).

In the Slovak Republic the Tax Freedom Day was already on 6th May, in Poland on 4th June, in Germany it will be on 15th June, in Austria on 30th June. In Sweden it will be even at the end of July.

Taste tens of Czech beers in Pivobrani 2007

If you like Czech beer and you want to try as many kinds of beer as possible during your short stay, don’t miss the Pivobrani 2007. It’s organized by the city district Prague 3 in cooperation with Prague 9.

The meeting place for all beer lovers is the Vitkov memorial in Prague-Zizkov. Besides tasting beer and snacks you can enjoy many concerts of Czech bands or singers, such as Krystof or Anna K.

The programme will start on 15th June 2007 at 16:00 and will finish on 16th June before 22:00. The entrance is for free. You can use shuttle buses from Konevova street (also for free) to get to the memorial.

Naked cyclists in the streets of Prague this Saturday

Prague will be one of the cities where naked cyclists will protest against cars in one of the biggest actions all over the world for calling attention to the environment and vulnerability of cyclists on the road. It’s called the World Naked Bike Ride.

Naked cyclists (with possible paintings on their bodies) will ride in the busiest streets of Prague this Saturday. This action will be organized in the Czech capital for the second time, however, only a few people participated last year.

Besides Prague, many other metropolises are involved, such as London, Barcelona, Berlin, Amsterdam, Montreal, Los Angeles, New York City, Cape Town, Tel Aviv, Sidney, etc. More information about this action can be found at the official pages here.

'Madagascar, the Lab of Gods' in the National Museum in Prague

The National Museum opens a new exhibition in the main building in the upper part of the Wenceslas Square. It’s called Madagascar, the Lab of Gods’ and it’s devoted to the history and development of this unique island.

The exhibition presents the island in several ways. It shows the history of the island long before the first inhabitants as well as the influence of people on the local fauna and flora. The biggest part of the exhibition focuses on unique flowers and animals on the island and the efforts to protect them. The exhibition is open in the National Museum until 19th September 2007.

Besides this exhibition, those who are interested can buy a new picture book called Madagascar, the Lab of Gods in the shopping centre of the museum. The Botanical Garden in Troja will give several lectures on Madagascar in the Madagascar Week (18th – 24th June).

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Less stressful journey to Prague Zoo

Almost everybody who has once travelled to/from Prague Zoo, either by bus or by car, can talk about an unpleasant experience. Buses (no. 112) are full of people and can’t even hold all the people waiting at the stops. Cars are trapped in traffic jams. The Prague Zoo and the city council are trying to solve this problem, but so far in vain.

The Public Transport Co. advices that there are other ways how to get to Prague Zoo in Troja besides the bus no. 112 from Nadrazi Holesovice (metro red line C). Another possibility is to go by metro to Kobylisy (metro red line C), change for buses no. 102, 144 or 186 and go to stop Na Pazderce. Then it’s about a 600-meter-long walk through a small wood to the greenhouse Fata Morgana in the Botanical Garden or to Prague Zoo.

In the future the city plans to intensify the water transport or create ecological trains, so that the trip to Troja won’t be spoiled by a stressful journey there.

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Czech modern history in the Vitkov monument

Vitkov Monument As we have already informed, the Vitkov Monument on Vitkov Hill is going to be completely reconstructed to turn into a modern history museum holding an exhibition The Crossroads of Czech Statehood. The monument should be ready in two years.

Five crossroads will remember the modern history of the Czech Republic. The first crossroad will be devoted to the foundation of the Czechoslovakia in 1918, the others will focus on the German occupation, political trials in the 50’s, the Prague Spring and the Soviet occupation in the year 1968 and the Velvet Revolution.

Among the exhibits will be bloody shirts of parachutists Kubis and Gabcik, the assassins of Heydrich, or the original Charta 77, that was confiscated from Vaclav Havel by the State Police. Now it’s the part of the National Museum collection. Visitors will also see the lab where scientists took care of the embalmed body of Clement Gottwald.

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Police festival Festpol 2007 in Prague

Prague hosts now the 7th International Festival of Police Orchestras and Choirs Festpol 2007. It’s organized by the Orchestra of Prague Castle and the Czech Republic Police with cooperation of Bohemia Ticket Agency. People have a special opportunity to see the “other face” of these “men of law”.

The festival was open yesterday by the mayor of Prague in the Prague Old Town Hall. The programme continues today with concerts in the Church of Sts Simon and Juda at 14:00 and in the Old Town Square at 14:30.

Tomorrow at 10:00 people can go to a concert of all participants of this festival to the gardens of Prague Castle. At 15:00 starts a parade of all orchestras and choirs through the city, at 15:20 there will be a concert in the Old Town Square. The programme will be finished tomorrow at 20:00 by a festive evening in the National Museum.

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Zucchero's concert in Prague this September

One of the most famous European musicians, Italian pop singer Zucchero, known especially for his songs ‘Senza una Donna’ or Con le mani’ will perform in Prague this September during his world tour 2007.

Zucchero, born Adelmo Fornciari, has recorded 16 albums and has cooperated with many stars, such as Joe Cocker, Paul Young, Elton John, Bono, Sting, Luciano Pavarotti or Eric Clapton.

Prague audience can look forward to his best songs, his Italian charm, temperament and charisma on 14th September 2007 in Prague Congress Centre. Tickets are not for sale yet.

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Some Prague sights were 'out of order' this week

The Astronomical Clock in the Old Town Square One of the dominant of the Old Town Square, over 600 years old Astronomical Clock stopped during the visit of American president George W. Bush on Tuesday. In the last few days it broke down several times.

Rather than the arrival of the American president the clock reacted to the changes of the temperatures outside. Most of the 350 components of the clock machine are still original and very sensitive to weather.

As the visit of the American President closed Prague Castle for almost two days, the castle was “attacked” by thousands of tourists yesterday. More than 4,500 people visited the short tour of Prague Castle from the morning till two o’clock in the afternoon. Prague Castle is the most popular tourist attraction in Prague, visited yearly by about 5 million tourists.

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Czech Railways introduce new types of reductions

Czech Railways offers two new types of travel discounts for all travellers valid from 10th June 2007. Besides other discounts (here) you can use CD Net and RegioNet.

CD Net offers a one-day ticket for transportation in 2nd class in all kinds of trains (except higher-quality EC and IC trains, than you have to pay a supplementary charge) in the whole country. You can buy either a ticket for one person for 390 CZK or for two to five persons for 780 CZK. You can travel any day, the ticket can be bought up to two months in advance.

RegioNet is meant for travelling in one district in the Czech Republic (e.g. central Bohemia). These one-day tickets are valid only in the 2nd class of ordinary trains (in Czech Os or Sp). The tickets cost 130 CZK for one person and 260 CZK for two to five people. The tickets can be bought up to two months in advance.

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Photographs of Chicago by Terry Evans in Prague

Chicago by Terry Evans An airport from above? A view of a parking place for trucks from a helicopter? This and many more can be seen in the new exhibition in Prague devoted to Chicago.

American photographer Terry Evans shows there 36 large photographs of this American city made from a helicopter. She cooperated with the non-profit organization Openlands dedicated to preserving and enhancing public open space in northeastern Illinois.

Her photos are displayed in Clam-Gallas Palace (Husova 20) in the Old Town in Prague until 19th August 2007. The exhibition in one of the most beautiful palaces in Prague is open daily except Monday between 10:00 and 18:00.

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Renee Zellweger the star of the film festival in Karlovy Vary

Renee Zellweger in Miss Potter The star of the 42nd International Film Festival Karlovy Vary will be the Academy Award winner Renee Zellweger (Bridget Jones’s Diary, Chicago, Cold Mountain). During the gala evening on 29nd June she will hand over the Crystal Globe Award to the legend of Czech animation Bretislav Pojar.

She will also introduce her new movie Miss Potter, which is a bibliographical story about the author of popular children’s books at the turn of the 19th and 20th century. For her performance in this film she was nominated for the Golden Globe Award.

The famous film festival in Karlovy Vary starts on 29th June 2007 and finishes on 7th July 2007. All those who wants to attend it, can find more information about the festival at the official sites here.

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Prague Spring 2008 will be full of music stars

The international music festival Prague Spring has just ended but the organizers already know the interprets for the next year. One of the stars of Prague Spring 2008 will be British violist Nigel Kennedy.

Other musicians that will perform in Prague next year will be famous pianists Maurizio Pollini and Alfred Brendel, than Slovak singer Edita Gruberova. An extraordinary experience will also bring the BBC Symphony Orchestra directed by Jiri Belohlavka, also Halle orchestra from Manchester and Philharmonic Orchestra from Petersburg.

The festival 2008 will be open by Brno Philharmonic Orchestra directed by Petr Altrichter and ended by Budapest Festival Orchestra directed by Ivan Fischer.

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Angelina Jolie - another baby from Prague?

Angelina Jolie with her adopted children Angelina Jolie and Brad Pitt are reportedly planning to adopt another child. Angelina has been in Prague to film her new movie Wanted. The Sun claim that Angelina has found an orphan that “would fit perfectly with the other kinds”. The orphan is said to be from a Catholic orphanage in the centre of Prague.

Her partner Brad Pitt was reportedly coming from Montreal to Prague to see the baby. However, as the MF DNES reports, no Czech institution dealing with adoption of Czech children by foreigners didn’t confirmed this information. According to Jan Outlik from Charita CR, there is no orphanage in the centre of Prague, what’s more the term “orphanage” is not used in the Czech Republic at the present.

Angelina Jolie have already adopted three children, a son from Cambodia, a daughter from Ethiopia and a son from Vietnam. Angelina and Brad have also a biological daughter.

Asian art in the House At the Stone Bell

the Stone Bell House in the Old Town Square All those who like Asian culture shouldn’t miss a new exhibition Many Colours of Asia (Mnoho barev Asie) in the Stone Bell House in the Old Town Square. It’s an international project whose aim is to introduce Asian culture and traditional art in Prague.

Visitors can see collections of jewelry, carpets, fine arts and photographs from Phillippines, Vietnam, India, South Korea, Kazakhstan, Japan, Malaysia, Mongolia, China, Pakistan, Indonesia and Afghanistan.

The exhibition is accompanied with a festival of Asian cinematography, concerts and dance performances. The exhibition is open in the cellar of the Stone Bell House until 5th July 2007.

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Action against pickpockets and prostitutues in Prague

More police officers can be seen in the centre of Prague in summer. The reason? The city tries to fight pickpocketing, false money from exchange bureaus, beggars and prostitution.

The city police will build three mobile booths in the Wenceslas Square, the Old Town Square and Kinsky Square to provide tourists with information or help. The policemen will be accompanied with young students who will help them with foreign languages.

The police officers will be also present in the busiest tram lines – no. 9 and 22 – to prevent pickpockets from stealing. They will also hand over leaflets showing the Czech currency.

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George W. Bush lobbied in Prague for the radar base

George W. Bush and Vaclav Klaus, author www.ct24.cz Just before 18:00 yesterday American President George W. Bush left Prague and ended the two-day visit of the Czech Republic, the first country on his European tour this week.

Yesterday morning George W. Bush met President and Prime Minister of the Czech Republic at Prague Castle. At the later press conference he assured Czech people that he will talk with President of Russia Vladimir Putin about the U.S. radar bases in Eastern Europe and will tell him not to fear about it. Bush also stressed that he is “a strong supporter in changing their visa waiver policy” towards the Czech Republic. (Click here for the whole text of the Prague Castle speech)

In the afternoon President Bush met the leader of the opposition Jiri Paroubek whose party is not in favour of the radar base in the Czech Republic. In the afternoon George W. Bush gave a speech in Cernin Palace on the conference on Democracy and Security. The White House web pages bring the whole text of his speech. Click here to see pictures of President Bush in Prague.

Laura Bush was accompanied by the First Lady of the Czech Republic Livia Klausova. They saw the gardens of Prague Castle and the Strahov Monastery. They could admire several precious books about America there.

The transport in the city was without any serious problems. Several demonstrations took part in Prague, the most visible one was organized by the Greenpeace near Charles Bridge.

March through Prague against breast cancer

March through Prague against breast cancer Cosmetics firm Avon organizes already the 10th pink march in Prague against the breast cancer. Why pink? To join this march, you should buy a pink cap and a pink T-shirt for 300 CZK. The proceeds will be given to organizations that help to fight the breast cancer.

The motto of this year’s march is Together Against Breast Cancer as this disease affects the whole family. Last year more than 6,000 people collected about 5,5 million CZK.

The march starts near the Powder Tower in Namesti Republiky on Saturday 16th June 2007 at 12:00. Then the march will continue to O2 Zlute Lazne near the Vltava River. Participants can expect a rich programme.

Two trams crashed in the centre of Prague

Two trams (no. 18 and 3) crashed in Palackeho namesti in the centre of Prague today early in the morning. Several people were injured, one woman had to be taken to the hospital.

The accident was caused by a tram that went from Palackeho bridge to Charles Square (Karlovo namesti). The rear part of the tram derailed and crashed into another tram waiting at the stop. Then it fell on the pavement.

The tram transport had to be diverted via Myslikova street until 9:30. The cause of the accident is still not known yet, one of the possible causes could be that the driver drove too fast. The accident is being investigated now.

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Prague hosts tens of dissidents now

Tens of dissidents, experts on security, fighters for freedom and politicians have come to Prague to attend the two-day international conference in Cernin Palace on democracy and security.

The conference is organized by the Adelson Institute for Strategic Studies at the Jerusalem-based Shalem Center, the Prague Security Studies Institute and the Foundation for Social Analysis and Studies in Madrid. The main topic of the conference is the question if there is any connection between promoting of democracy and strengthening of security.

Among the prominent people at the conference are the human rights fighter Natan Sharansky, the leader of Russian opposition movement Garry Kasparov, senator Joe Lieberman, the leader of Belorussian opposition Alexander Milinkevich, the former Spanish prime minister Jose Maria Aznar, the former president of the Czech Republic Vaclav Havel and many others. After 16:00 the conference will be addressed by the American president George W. Bush.

George W. Bush is in Prague

George W. Bush The American President George W. Bush is already in Prague. His air force one landed at Prague International Airport Ruzyne at 20:45 yesterday. George W. Bush and his wife Laura were welcomed there by the Czech Minister of Foreign Affairs Karel Schwarzenberg and castle chancellor Jiri Weigl. After that they got in the armoured Cadillac and continued to the Hilton Hotel where they probably spent the night.

Today starts the official programme. Right now Bush has a meeting with the Czech president Vaclav Klaus and other Czech diplomats at Prague Castle. They are discussing mainly the possible U.S. anti-missile radar base in the Czech Republic.

At 11:30 starts a press conference of the two presidents and the Czech prime minister. After that several prominent people are invited to Prague Castle for lunch. After 16:00 Bush will address the conference on democracy and security in Cernin Palace. His speech is considered to be the most important part of his programme.

Laura Bush will be accompanied by the Czech First Lady Livia Klausova, who will show her the gardens and galleries of Prague Castle and the Strahov Monastery. Today afternoon the presidential couple fly to Germany to for the summit G8.

Kramar's villa is open until Sunday

The Prime Minister of the Czech Republic Mirek Topolanek decided to prolong the exhibition in Kramar’s villa until 10th June. The Neo-baroque villa was built by the first Czechoslavak Prime Minister for his wife Nadezda at the beginning of the 20th century. The villa has 56 rooms, most of them serve as state rooms.

The last Prime Minister who lived in that villa was Vladimir Spidla. His successors Stanislav Gross, Jiri Paroubek and Mirek Topolanek refused to move there. Mirek Topolanek uses the villa for meetings with his coalition partners.

There is a free entrance to the villa. Visitors can see the estates of the Kramers family. Those who are interested in the history of the villa and its inhabitants, should register at heldova.milada@vlada.cz.

Photography exhibition against uncontrolled arms

You can see an unusual exhibition in the spaces of Prague´s metro station Florenc these days. There are photographs depicting how uncontrolled trade with guns affects people´s life in various countries. The exhibition is a part of the “Control Arms” campaign of the Amnesty International.

The photographs were taken by important photographers such as G. Tillim, A. Test or Z. Nelson. They illustrate, how the huge number of guns in the world contributes to the never-ending violent conflicts and how it helps the undemocratic regimes. The victims are often civilians, women and children.

The aim of the campaign is to support an international treaty about the arms trade, which could help to solve the problem.

The exhibition in the metro station Florenc (on B and C lines) will continue till the half of June.

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Zlin Film Festival has its winners

The most successful movie of this year´s Zlin International Film Festival for Children and Youth is the Swedish movie Leaps and Bounds by Petter Naess. It gained the main prize – the Golden Slipper – for the best feature film for youth, the main prize of the international children´s jury and the prize awarded by the jury of the federation of film clubs.

The Viewers´s Prize goes to the Czech movie Maharal by Pavel Jandourek. The Golden Slipper for the best feature film for children was given to the film Little Heroes from Israel, the best animated film is the Brazilian movie Tyger.

The international children´s jury awarded the main prize for the best feature film for children to the Dutch movie Off-side by Arend Steenbergen.

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George Michael´s concert in Prague cancelled

The concert of British singer George Michael in Prague, which was planned on 2nd June, had to be cancelled. The reason is an accident of a truck, which transported equipment for the concert from Bucharest to Prague.

However, the tickets stay valid, because the concert will take place on some later date. It could be at the end of George Michael´s summer tour. The organizers will announce the concrete date till 12th June.

The truck, which had the accident, carried a special platform, which couldn´t be substituted. George Michael apologizes to all his fans for the cancellation of the concert.

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Come to see movies under the open sky

One of the best places to go to see a movie in Prague during the summer is the Strelecky Island (“Shooters´ Island”). There is an open-air cinema offering the most interesting new movies and also other events, such as theater performances and concerts. These screenings have always a special atmosphere – you sit on an island on the river Vltava, surrounded by trees and you can see the riverside with the National Theater on the opposite bank…isn´t it better than to sit in a usual cinema?

The open-air cinema was opened yesterday. There will be a program every day till the beginning of September. The movies usually start at 9:30 pm. You can arrive with a dog or with a bike – these things don´t matter. Even in case of bad weather, the movies will be screened, there is a tent to protect the visitors. Especially screenings during a storm are very successful…

The program starts with Czech movies in June. Most of the films are accompanied by English subtitles. There is a summer bar, where you can buy a drink (open between 12 pm and midnight). You can also play petanque, frisbee or badminton at the island.

A ticket costs 100,- CZK. The island is situated under the bridge Most Legii. See the complete program of the open-air cinema here.

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Demonstrations during the visit of George W. Bush in Prague

American president George W. Bush will arrive in Prague today in the evening. Several demonstrations will take place in the city center, to express disagreement with the possible US radar base in the Czech Republic.

The biggest demonstration will be at the Hradcanske namesti (Castle Square) in front of the Prague Castle. It will start at 6 pm and there should be around 1000 demonstrators. It is organized by the initiative Ne zakladnam (“No to the radar base”).

Other protests are planned to take place at the Old Castle Steps (there will be a campaign about the US policy), at Trziste in front of the US Embassy and at Marianske hradby. There will be a “clown parade” to the Castle Square, because of the “visit of the king of the clowns”, as the organizers say.

The same parade will be held on Tuesday. The campaign at the Old Castle Steps will also continue tomorrow.

It is possible that the demonstrations will be restricted by the police, which plans to close the area of the Prague Castle, including the Castle Square.

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Concerts of classical music in Prague this weekend

St Nicholas Church in the Old Town Square As the weather forecast promises a rainy weekend in Prague we bring a short review of concerts of classical music that will take place in unique concert halls or churches in Prague worth seeing.

On Saturday 2nd June villa Bertramka will offer compositions of Mozart and Beethoven (start 17:00), St Nicholas Church in Old Town Square will host beneficial concerts from 14:00 and 18:00, the Music Faculty of the Academy of Performing Arts organizes a concert (Bach, Eben, Stanley, Buxtehude) in the Lichtenstein Palace in Lesser Town Square (at 19:30). The Loreto will resound with organ mini concerts (at 15:00 and 15:30).

The concert of ‘F. Schubert: Ave Maria’ in the Church of St Francis in the Knights of the Cross Square will start On Saturday and Sunday at 20:00. ‘Music walks’ can be heard in the Fata Morgana greenhouse in Prague Botanical Garden (at 17:00) or in Troja Chateau (at 15:00). Besides these concerts you can visit one of the concert of the Prague music festival Prague Spring.

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Restrictions during the visit of the American President

Hradcanske square The Czech Railways Company announces that due to the visit of American president George W. Bush the passengers travelling by train and later by bus Airport Express to the airport should expect delays on Monday afternoon and evening. The timetable of Czech Railways might change that day

Also flights from/to Prague via Prague International Airport Ruzyne might be delayed on Monday evening and Tuesday evening. During the landing/taking off of the Air Force One, the the air traffic will be interrupted. Passengers are, therefore, advised to come to the airport at least 90 minutes before the departure.

Evropska street leading to Prague Airport will be contemporary closed, the best way how to get to the airport is to go by metro yellow line B to the terminal Zlicin and than continue by bus no. 100.

Prague citizens living or working nearby the area of Prague Castle and Hradcanske namesti will be allowed to this area just after showing a document proving it. The Prague Castle and the nearby area will be closed for everybody else on Tuesday between 6:00 and 15:00.

The Czech Republic is a peaceful country

The magazine The Economist together with the Economist Intelligence Unit brought results of their Global Peace Index ranking 121 countries of the world from most peaceful to least peaceful.

The most peaceful country in the world is Norway followed by New Zealand, Denmark, Ireland and Japan. The least peaceful country is Iraq, a bit more peaceful are Sudan, Israel, Russia and Nigeria. See the complete list here.

The Czech Republic was ranked 13, which makes it one of the most peaceful countries of the world. The index took note of several factors – crime rates, prison population, trust between citizens, relations with neighbour states, arms sales, foreign troop deployments, and others.

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Big demand for costumes from the Barrandov studio in Prague

Costumes in Barrondov film studio in Prague Many foreign films have been shot in the Barrandov Film Studio in Prague. Film makers cooperate with studio also in another way – to borrow something from the unique collection of 260,000 costumes, wigs and fashion accessories that the studio provides.

You can see Barrandov costumes and requisites in many films, such as Omen 666, La Vie en Rose (La Mome) and Eragon, or more recently Babylon A.D. or The Chronicles of Narnia: Prince Caspian shot in the Czech Republic.

80 ensembles of costumes for noble people are now borrowed for the film makers of the second season of the historical TV serial The Tudors presenting the life Henry VIII, the King of England and Ireland.

Roma festival Khamoro in the streets of Prague

A parade of Roma dancers and musicians from many countries walked through several places in Prague yesterday. It started in the lower part of the Wenceslas Square accompanied with the drumbeat, sounds of harmonica and and wind instruments. Passers-by could see young girls in colourful dress showing their traditional dances.

This event was a part of Roma festival Khamoro that is taking place in Prague right now. The evening programme will continue today in Roxy club (Dlouha 33 street). Visitors can listen to the traditional Roma music from Hungary, Serbia, Portugal and Macedonia.

The festival finishes on Saturday 2nd June with a gala concert of traditional Roma music from several countries in the Congress Centre in Prague (metro red line C, station Vysehrad). The start of the concert is at 20:00. Click here for more info.

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