Best of the 2014 Fests: Prague Edition

Hear, feel, and taste the pleasures of living in Prague with a lightening festival, urban conference & circus stunts!

Eva Samšuková

Written by Eva Samšuková Published on 23.01.2014 16:38:46 (updated on 23.01.2014) Reading time: 6 minutes

First-time & and new festivals: Most of these festivals took place for the first time last year with one of them making its Prague debut in 2014.

Festival Spectaculare, January 20 – 30
We already told you about this festival in our What’s on January column. Want to see a hybrid of new media and cultural activities such as dance or theatre? Attend! Besides, you can visit a lot of interesting spots around Prague like the quite newly established theatre Studio Hrdinů in Veletržní palace. Official website

Cloud at Signal Festival 2013
Cloud at Signal Festival 2013

Signal Festival, October 16 – 19
Firstly, you find yourself standing in a shining metal box on the Old Town Square, then you flirt either with colourful Ginger or Fred in front of the Dancing house and last but not least, placed on the riverbank, you see Petřín Tower scanning the whole city with a strong laser, which is exactly the same thing the pendulum on Letná does. That is the Signal Festival coming to connect the whole city in October for the second time! Official website

Nouvelle Prague, October/November
Showcasing is slowly building its reputation in the Czech Republic. Nouvelle Prague is not actually the first showcase event happening in Prague. For example, the project organizes a concert introducing fresh Czech bands every year in December. But Nouvelle Prague is the first happening that showcases foreign bands to foreign talent hunters who come here especially for this reason. Official website

Talent hunters at Nouvelle Prague 2013
Talent hunters at Nouvelle Prague 2013

Food festivals: Life simply cannot be enjoyed without food. Promoters know it and now you can fill up on exceptional meals in a festive atmosphere many times throughout the year. Here are some tips for festivals following the initial Grand Restaurant Festival in January.

Prague Food Festival, May 23 – 25
This culinary festival is organized by the same team promoting the Grand Restaurant Festival. But the concept is different. While you can visit many restaurants serving delicious menus during the Grand Restaurant Festival in winter, in May you have a chance to visit the Royal Gardens of Prague Castle where more than 20 of the most renowned Czech restaurants, breweries or wine shops from Prague offer small plates of big flavors. Official website

Foodparade, September 6 – 7
Similar concept, similarly beautiful surroundings (the chateau at Troja)… Meet the Foodparade! Imagine how many tons of food must have been consumed by the more than 10,000 visitors of the event last year! Here, visitors buy meal tickets, which you can later trade for different meals. Or if you are courageous enough, you can create your own recipe and win some money to keep you fed throughout the year. Official website

Bread at Foodparade 2013
Bread at Foodparade 2013

Prague Coffee Festival, October
Moving from a smaller to a larger space last year thanks to its growing attendance, this festival presents all you need to know about coffee  – from its planting to how not to screw up its preparation at home. “This festival is a great way to taste coffee not only from cafés in Prague, but from the whole Republic.” says Terezka Balá, barista from Můj šálek kávy. Official website

Music Fests: Can you just never get music? Hardly satisfied by the enormous amount of music festivals in summer? Well then, we have another dose for you.

United Islands České spořitelny, June 19 – 21
The Vltava divides Prague into two parts – the right and the left riverbank. Only the islands keep their neutral status. There are 11 of them in Prague and every June some of them host the huge musical festival United Islands. Due to floods, the festival was moved to Ladronka Park last year, but the promoters want to take the festival back to its island roots and plan to place stages on Střelecký Island and on Kampa. Thanks to the huge attendance last year, the main stage will be placed in Kinského Garden. Official website

Strings of Autumn 2013
Strings of Autumn 2013

Strings of Autumn, September/October
Prague has always been a cradle of famous classical composers and conductors. We pay tributes to them and want to live up to their reputation by organizing a lot of festivals. We actually do pretty well. The festival with the longest tradition is the elegant Prague Spring Festival which dates back to the 40’s. Prague Proms and Dvořák’s Prague are world-class musical festivals as well. But my most favourite festival is Strings of Autumn. Its program contains not only of classical pieces, but of also different kinds of music such as jazz, klezmer, folklore or even pop! Besides, they place concerts in non-typical venues, such as churches or clubs. Official website

Films Events:A number of art house cinemas in Prague give film buffs the opportunity to view numerous films from Czech directors and abroad, many of them giving expats the chance to catch English-subtitled films.

The Shockproof Film Festival, March 4 – 9
It’s birthday time for this festival which has been screening controversial pictures for already 10 years every March! Hide yourself behind the door and don’t leave home between March 4th and 9th if you have a sensitive soul. Your convictions about the social issues highlighted by these films might get a serious sobering up. Official website

Stitches, The Shockproof Film Festival 2013
Stitches, The Shockproof Film Festival 2013

Mezipatra, November 6 – 14
After reading the novel In One Person by John Irving I became more interested in all aspects of human sexuality. This festival will definitely help you explore all different angles of it and sort your opinions, as it helped me. It begins in Prague and then moves to Brno for the second part. Official website

Mezipatra 2013
Mezipatra 2013

Fresh Film Fest, August/September
Not only old raffish directors and producers can make it to the red carpet! Fresh Film Fest is a platform providing young movie makers, who have just left school, with a chance to show their debut movies to the public. It is a competitive festival so you can be sure to get the best of film school productions. Official website

Arts festivals: Food, music or films don’t attract you? We knew someone like you would appear, so we chose a few events presenting something different…

Fun Fatale, March 16 – April 1
New circus theatre is becoming highly popular in Prague, but this festival adds a new dimension to it. The reason? It is all about women! Women moving, flying, making fun and just being awesome. Don’t be surprised by other things you didn’t have a clue women are capable of! Official website

Fun Fatale 2014
Fun Fatale 2014

KomiksFEST!, October 29 – November 2
The motto of the last year’s festival was “Comics unlimited!” When talking about media, we often don’t consider comics to be one of them. But it is quite the opposite – comics have a lot to say, they can carry a strong message in various forms. So they are presented at various places around Prague during the festival. Official website

KomiksFEST! 2013
KomiksFEST! 2013

Letní Letná, August 17 – September 2
There are a countless number of spots with a beautiful view of Prague. One of them serves as a monumental theatre scene annually at the end of summer. Firstly, visit a large tent with unbelievable circus stunts performance, then buy a beer and a sausage and let yourself wind down above Prague. Official website

ReSITE, June 19 – 20
Architecture is what gives a city its face. In the same way you can read someone’s face and guess their personality, you can do the same with a city. I love watching cities from above, but this is rather a conference than a festival and it takes you to every basement, corner or a spire. And we are not talking only about Prague, where the event is held. The major part of the program belongs to architects and designers from abroad talking about their alma maters. Official website

Tanec Praha, May 5 – June 6
You don’t have to speak any language; you can even forget your native one! This International Festival of Contemporary Dance and Movement Theatre probes deeper feelings and emotions. The only thing you have to worry about is finding a seat. Then let the dancers impress you. Official website

That’s it for Prague, check out our The Best of the 2014 Fests: Music, Film, Theater!
Did I miss something? Let me know at!

Tanec Praha 2013
Tanec Praha 2013

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