Prague’s top festivals will join forces for a single three-week, socially-distanced super event

All of the organizers of Prague’s main festivals are cooperating on a massive event next month to celebrate the city’s culture

Raymond Johnston

Written by Raymond Johnston
Published on 12.08.2020 09:28 (updated on 12.08.2020)

From September 8 to 28 Výstaviště in Prague’s Holešovice district will host a celebration called Praha Září (Prague September). It will bring together social and cultural activities from the realms of modern and classical music, new circus, theater and dance, fine arts, design, film, digital art, and new technologies.

The largest Prague festivals Designblok, Prague IFF – Febiofest, Letní Letná, Metronome Prague Music & Arts Fair, Prague Spring, Signal Festival and United Islands of Prague will be represented. The festivals will be complemented by a number of other artistic activities. Praha Září, created with the support of the City of Prague and fairground operator Výstaviště Praha, will become a joint celebration of the return of cultural and social life.

Praha Září will offer both free and ticketed programs, those interested in various performances and activities will be able to register from the second half of August on the festival website.

The event will take place in the outdoor part of Výstaviště, where the complex will be divided into several smaller zones. According to David Gaydečka, one of the initiators of Praha Září and the organizer of the United Islands and Metronome festivals, this will offer an intimate spectator experience, and moving some activities from an indoor space can help make various events possible.

“Thanks to the friendliness of the City of Prague, Výstaviště Praha and many partners, we are coming together with all the actors with an unexpected event that has probably not happened in the world yet. The great solidarity of all the organizers and partners, who now do not decide whether someone is competing with someone or has a different opinion on what the best cultural activity should be, is exactly what this complicated time needs,” Gaydečka said.

“If similar activities exist or are just emerging elsewhere in the world, that is only good. We come with a restart of the cultural season and the hope that we will not lose the sharing of experiences and the opportunity to enjoy the work of various artists. In September, together we will celebrate the belief that next year we will hopefully return to a more normal functioning. We invite the general public to participate and we believe that everyone will find something in the program,” Gaydečka added.

The event has the support of Prague politicians. “We care about the cultural scene in Prague, and I am glad that the capital city of Prague can support this project of connected Prague festivals. I believe that everyone will find something for them and we will be able to support the cultural scene together,” Prague Mayor Zdeněk Hřib (Pirates) said.

City Councilor Hana Třeštíková (Praha sobě), responsible for culture, said the coronavirus crisis has hit the Prague cultural scene very hard. “But events like Praha Září give me hope that we can use the crisis in the right way: cultural actors have come together, established closer cooperation and created a unique project that Prague has not yet experienced. I am very glad that in an effort to save Prague’s culture, we can pull together,” Třeštíková said.

Aerial view of Výstaviště via Praha.eu
Aerial view of Výstaviště via Praha.eu

The Výstaviště complex in Prague’s Holešovice underwent significant renovation last year, creating better technical facilities and ensuring hygienic conditions. The Brussels Road is also newly repaired, and will be used as a zone for refreshments for visitors to the event or regular visitors to Stromovka Park and Výstaviště. “We managed to turn the neglected area of Výstaviště s into a leisure area, where Praguers like to return. We are pleased that thanks to this, such a large event can take place here, which will have a quality background for the organizers and a pleasant environment for visitors,’ Prague Deputy Mayor Pavel Vyhnánek (Praha sobě) said.

The event, supported by the capital city of Prague and the Výstaviště Praha, is organized by the Prague Incredible association, an umbrella group including the participating festivals. The organizers of various cultural activities such as Aerofilms, Kefír Festival, Mladý Ladí Jazz, Tanec Praha and many others also took part.

The individual organizers are currently being assisted by their partners and also by the partners covering Praha Září: CETIN, Pilsner Urquell and Volkswagen. Other supporters are still under negotiation.