Václav Havel to be commemorated in Prague with a series of events this week

Eight years ago on December 18, 2011, Czech president Václav Havel died at age 75

Katrina Modrá

Written by Katrina Modrá Published on 16.12.2019 09:54 (updated on 16.12.2019) Reading time: 2 minutes

A number of events are planned in the Czech capital this Wednesday, December 18, to commemorate the anniversary of Czech President Václav Havel who died at age 75 on this date in 2011.

Many of these annual events have become Prague traditions, including the spontaneous gathering and lighting of candles that took place on Wenceslas Square eight years ago following the announcement of Havel’s death.

Many of the events’ organizers emphasize the importance of continuing to commemorate the last president of Czechoslovakia and the first president of the Czech Republic, a playwright and author.

Short pants for Havel take place worldwide December 18, 2019

“I grew up in the post-revolution era and I am grateful to Václav Havel,” says Hedvika Dočekalová one of the organizers of the Wenceslas Square event. “This commemorative event marks the beginning of an annual tradition, because it must not be forgotten.”

Below is schedule of events planned for Wednesday, the eighth anniversary of the late Czech president:

Candle for Václav Havel

  • Where: Jungmann Square
  • When: 11 am to 6 pm
  • What’s happening: During the afternoon, snippets of texts from Havel’s work will be read on the spot, and several musicians will perform.
  • Event link:Facebook

Heart to the Castle march

  • Where: From Václav Havel Square (piazzeta Národní divadlo) to Hradčanské Square
  • When: Processional begins at 6 pm
  • What’s happening: A heart that “personally symbolizes all the good that Mr. Havel was able to wake in us” will be carried from the square to the castle where audio recordings of Havel speaking will be played.
  • Event link:Facebook


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Memorial for Václav Havel on the Anniversary of his Death

  • Where: Wenceslas Square under the horse statue
  • When: 6 pm
  • What’s happening: People will gather to light a candle for the late president. Scheduled to appear are many of Havel’s friends, as well as prominent Czech journalists and artists. Songs by Karel Kryl and Marta Kubišová will be played by Ticho de Pre Cupé BAND.
  • Event link:Facebook

Short Pants for Václav Havel

  • Where: All around the world
  • When: All day long on December 18
  • What’s happening: Each year on this date tens of thousands of people all around the world roll up their trousers for the whole day to remember his first entry into the presidential office.
  • Event link: Facebook

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