Bohuslav Martinů Days to be held online
Bohuslav Martinů Days to be held online; the music competition will be held in February 2021
Current COVID-19 restrictions in the Czech Republic prevent this year's Bohuslav Martinů Days from being held in concert halls with audiences. Instead, the concerts will be recorded and posted online at www.martinu.cz/festival. These changes will also affect the Martinů Foundation competition, which will now take place in February.
This year's competition wasopen to harpsichord players, flautists, clarinettists and trumpeters. The closure of schools, however, prevented students from preparing the competition pieces adequately and the current situation also makes the organization of the event itself more complicated. Therefore, the whole competition, together with the prize-winners' concert, will take place between 12 and 14 February, 2021.
Changes will affect the festival too. The biggest alteration is that it will be held completely online. Although the special atmosphere of the concert hall will be lost, there is some positive news for Martinů's admirers around the world. Performances by the best Czech instrumentalists will take place in the Martinů Hall in Prague and will be recorded and posted on the festival website, where they will stay until the next festival.
Listeners can look forward to performances by pianists Miroslav Sekera (Etudes and Polkas, H 308, as part of a whole recital of mainly Czech music) and Ivo Kahánek with cellist Petr Nouzovský (Cello Sonata No. 3, H 340); violinist Bohuslav Matoušek, who recorded Martinů's complete violin works (Violin Sonata No. 3, H 303), the Smetana Trio (Bergerettes, H 275) and the winners of last year’s competition, Duo Bohémo (Duo for violin and cello, H 371) and pianist Matouš Zukal (Eight Preludes, H 181). There will also be a recording of Band of the Castle Guards and Police of the Czech Republic and their prologue to the festival with arrangements of excerpts from the ballet Špalíček, H 214.
The festival opens with a concert by the Czech Philharmonic , who will play the Sinfonietta La Jolla, H 328. This performance will be broadcast by Czech TV's arts channel. The orchestra planned to prepare the opera Ariadna, H 370, but the ban on singing in the Czech Republic does not allow them to. The same problem affected a proposed evening with the Kühn Mixed Choir, now postponed until the spring. The choir is also preparing to give the first performance of a new piece by Miloš Orson Štědroň.