The Czech Center New York together with its partners have prepared a rich and varied program of events dedicated to the celebration of the 30th anniversary of the Velvet Revolution.
The overarching theme of the events is freedom. Concerts, theater performances, exhibitions, film screenings, discussions, and other programs will be held at the Bohemian Nation Hall in Manhattan from September to November 2019.
The main events include the performance of Audience, the one-act theater play by Václav Havel, starring Jakub Špalek and Jan Potměšil. The actors are also figures who have become part of the history of the Velvet Revolution itself, and they will discuss their experiences and insights after their performance, which is part of the Rehearsal for Truth Theater Festival.
No less expected is the concert of the band Garage, one of the symbols of the Czech independent music scene. Just like Audience, the Garage concert will be performed in two other American cities as well: Washington, D.C. and Chicago.
The Czech Center New York Gallery will also present two exhibitions. The exhibition Václav Havel, Citizen and Dramatist, prepared by the Arts and Theater Institute (Prague), will be on view from September through October. In November and December, it will be followed by an exhibition of the National Museum of the Czech Republic, specially prepared for the United States and other Czech Centers in the world, called Velvet Revolution 1989.
The program of the 30th-anniversary celebration will also include a special concert performed by the New York Mannes School of Music, which will introduce Czech composers and premiere a new composition by a US-based composer in honor of Václav Havel.
Visitors will also be able to learn about the history of the Velvet Revolution during the guided tours of the Bohemian National Hall (Open House New York) and other discussions and film screenings.
The highlight of the celebrations will be on Friday, November 8, 2019, when a diverse series of events is prepared at the Bohemian National Hall in New York, including discussions, tours of the Velvet Revolution 1989 exhibition, and a reception. The main part of the evening will be the concert of the legendary Czech band Spirituál Kvintet that will perform in New York as part of their 60th – and last – concert tour season.