Czech culture this week: French film, taboo art, and an electrifying new exhibit

Plus: The "The Nutcracker" opens, Bastille comes to Prague, and a Lars von Trier retrospective.

Ioana Caloianu

Written by Ioana Caloianu Published on 20.11.2022 16:28:00 (updated on 30.11.2022) Reading time: 4 minutes


Modern Prometheus | Get an inside look into the inventions of a modern genius, courtesy of the "Nikola Tesla at the Exhibition Grounds" coming to Prague via Belgrade. Serbia's Nikola Tesla Museum will explain the workings of the Tesla transformer, the power plant at the Niagara Falls, as well as of the many other creations of the Serbian-American inventor. The exhibition is in Czech and English, and runs between Nov. 21 and Dec. 11 at Výstaviště Prague.

Up-close fragility | The Slovak artist Monika Pascoe Mikyšková explores the cycle of growth and decay in nature through an exhibition that opens on Nov. 22 at the Jiri Svestka Gallery. Called "Sublimation," it turns the artist into a "visual botanist" who "narrates the fragility of non-human actors: plants, insects or entire biotopes," according to a press release.

Painting by Monika Pascoe Mikyšková, via Facebook/Jiri Svestka Gallery Prague.
Painting by Monika Pascoe Mikyšková via Jiri Svestka Gallery Prague.

Taboo Art | The Bohemian Taboo Road Show invites viewers to "an evening of intimacy and eroticism in creative arts and performances" at Palac Akropolis on Nov. 25. Subtitled "How to develop erotic intelligence," the show features a pop-up exhibit of original photography, oils on canvas, digital printmaking, unique intimate products and lingerie, Japanese bondage shibari, acrobatic performances, burlesque, and an immersive light and dance show.


Von Trier retrospective |Prepare yourself for the premiere of "The Kingdom's" season three with a Lars von Trier retrospective at Kino Aero. The "Lars von Trier Film Orgy" kicks off on Nov. 18 with "Dancer in the Dark," and continues until Dec. 9 with screenings of the Danish director's masterpieces, including the infamous "Nymphomaniac," all of them with English subtitles.

Lord of the Rings at 20 | Part of its Popculture Milestones series, Kino Aero will present two films from the Lord of the Rings trilogy next week. "The Lord of the Rings: The Fellowship of the Ring" plays on Nov. 21, exactly two decades since its original release. "The Lord of the Rings: The Two Towers" follows on Nov. 22. Both movies are in English with Czech subtitles.

Experimenting with love | The Edison Filmhub screens "The Borders of Love" (Hranice lásky in Czech) on Nov. 22, a movie that explores intimacy and open relationships. A study done by the STEM/MARK Agency ahead of the movie's premiere that asked people about open relationships found that half of Czechs cannot imagine such a thing at all. The movie is in Czech with subtitles in Czech and English.

Blind Date | Let Bio Oko pick the movie you will watch on Nov. 23! The cinema dares you to try "Blind date with Bio Oko," where you won't know what film you are going to see until the last moment. The admission fee for the English-friendly film is up to its viewers, who can pay after the screening as much as they feel the experience was worth, and receive a free beer if they've already seen the movie.

Parlez-vous?... |Between Nov. 24 and 30, the French Film Festival will present 54 films during 159 screenings in Prague, Brno, Ostrava, České Budějovice and Hradec Králové. The opening film in all cities is "Little Nicolas" (Petit Nicolas - Qu’est-ce qu’on attend pour être heureux ? in French), which won the main prize at this year's Annecy animation film festival. All films are shown in their original version with Czech subtitles or with Czech dubbing. 


Whodunit on stage|Inspired by the the iconic 1985 Paramount movie, which was in its turn inspired by the classic Hasbro board game, "Clue" plays at Divadlo Na Prádle on Nov. 22 and 26. The murder mystery stars "six mysterious guests" who gather at "an unusual dinner party where murder and blackmail are on the menu." The performance is in English.

No age limit |The 420PEOPLE dance troupe explores the taboo topic of ageing dancers through an intergenerational dance project called 42+PEOPLE, bringing on stage dancers that are older than 42, which premiers on Nov. 19 at Studio Maiselovka. The first year of the project features a choreography of the spectacle WHERE performed by dancers Helena Arenbergerová and Václav Kuneš.

Photo via 42+PEOPLE.
Photo via 42+PEOPLE.

Showing what cannot be said|Austrian author Thomas Berhnard's "Lunch at Wittgenstein" plays on Nov. 22 at the National Theatre with English subtitles. The play, according to the Guardian, revolves around the relationship of Vienna-born philosopher Ludwig Wittgenstein with two of his sisters, in a medley of criticism targeting "the Austrian upper middle class, hypocrisy, doctors, underpants, even the theatre itself." 

A seasonal favorite|Pyotr Ilyich Tchaikovsky's "Nutcracker – A Christmas Carol" ballet premieres on Nov. 23 at the National Theater. The ballet classic, which has been growing in popularity among audience members of all ages, is preceded by a dramaturgical introduction in Czech. Additionally, there will be an autograph session during the first intermission.


Dancing on the ceiling|Belgian artist Selah Sue is coming to Roxy on Nov. 21 to present her new album "Persona," which is an exploration of her strengths and weaknesses, and a new direction for the pop-soul artist. The singer is known for collaborations with Childish Gambino, Diplo, CeeLo Green or the rapper J Cole, and for counting the late artist Prince among her fans.

Dancefloor dystopia |British melancholic pop act Bastille teams up with German Alice Merton for a show on Nov. 23 at the Malá sportovní hala Výstaviště. The band's latest album "Give Me The Future" peeks into the future through the lens of technology, for a result "as playful as it is thought-provoking, as dystopian as it is dancefloor-friendly and as electronic as Bastille have ever been."

Musical alchemy | German musician and neoclassical composer Nils Frahm performs on Nov. 24 at the at Forum Karlín as part of the Prague Sounds The Festival. According to the festival's website, Frahm "is at the forefront of a new wave of performers who are making a name for themselves by experimenting with instruments and technology, although he is best known for a number of solo piano albums."

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