Since 2013 the Czech Republic participates in European Theatre Night, a project originated in Croatia. Each year on third Saturday of the November theatres open their doors to the public. The main goal of this event is to introduce and elucidate a theatre culture to the wide public via unconventional program. Public has an unique opportunity through diverse performances for children and adults, author readings, workshops and seminars, concerts, film screenings and tours to acquaint how theatres operate.
Brno, which has a long tradition in theatre, has joined this project and we have a chance to choose from variety of programs and get to know Brno theatres.
The beginnings of Brno National Theatre dates back to 1880s when first permanent stage of professional Czech theatre in Brno was opened on Veveří street (1884). Currently, the National Theatre Brno has three artistic ensembles – drama, opera and ballet performing in three theatre buildings Mahen Theatre (1881-1882), Janáček Theatre (1960-1965) and Reduta theatre (1733, 2005-2008 gained present look). There are far more smaller theatres located in Brno that take part in the event of the Theatre Night this year – Municipal Theatre (1945), Divadlo Bolka Polívky, Divadlo Husa na provázku, HaDivadlo, loutkové divadlo Radost, Divadlo Polárka, Studio Marta, Taneční divadlo Mimi Fortunae, Divadlo na Orlí, Divadlo Škopek, Nová Akropolis Brno, Divadlo Barka and Buranteatr.
When talking about beginnings of Brno stage-craft, you should know that Brno holds 3 first places in this kind of art- one is the world first place, one is the Central European first place and one is the Czech first place.
Reduta theatre, found on Zelní trh square, is considered to be the oldest theatre stage in Central Europe. In the 17th century there used to stand a tavern where German and Italian travelling theatre troupes performed. In 1732 a new building was erected and it was here that in 1767 a Baden company of German actors played in Czech for the first time “The Night Watchman in Love” (Zamilovaný ponocný). The statue in front of Reduta commemorates that on Christmas 1767 eleven-year old W. A. Mozart performed there. After several fires the theatre was closed and replaced with On the Ramparts theatre which is today`s Mahen theatre. Built in 1882 the theatre was the first public theatre in the world lit entirely by electric light with the Edison Electric Light Company. The plans were designed by Thomas Edison himself, who wasn’t present at the installation of the device but he visited Brno 25 years later to see his work.
Every theatre joining this event has prepared a special program for you. You can check it on their website or on the official website of the Theatre Night. Me personally, this time I have chosen to take a tour to Mahen theatre starting at 21:30. Hope to bring you nice photos of what Mahen theatre hides from public throughout the year except the one special NIGHT.
Despite my starting sickness I could not skip this event I was so much looking forward to. I think everyone is curious what is hidden behind the theatre scene and what we as audience can not see when watching a performance. As I promised I bring you some pictures from the tour in the theatre. I apologize for the quality, but guess what, when I arrived the camera stopped working so I had to use my cell phone 🙂 thank god for the high tech.