Activities celebrating Czech music, literature and cinema are to be held in Pingtung next week as part of the “Czech in Pingtung” festival, the first big event organized by a foreign institute in Taiwan.
In cooperation with the Pingtung County Government, the Czech Economic and Cultural Office in Taipei is to stage the festival from Wednesday to Sunday next week, sharing arts and culture from the Czech Republic with the people of southern Taiwan.
The week is to begin with a virtual academic workshop with officials from the Czech office and Taiwanese scientists at the National Museum of Marine Biology and Aquarium, followed by a meeting with students at the National Pingtung University of Science and Technology on Dec. 2, the Pingtung County Government said.
Photo courtesy of Pingtung County Government via CNA
A free classical music concert by the Taipei Chamber Players is to be held at the Pingtung Performing Arts Center on Friday next week, featuring music from the operas of pioneering 19th-century Czech composer Bedrich Smetana.
On Saturday next week, the Pingtung County Library plans to inaugurate its Czech Books Zone, which is to feature works by renowned Czech writers, including Milan Kundera and Franz Kafka.
The same day, the library is to host a book release for Hua Shu Chi (花束集, “bouquet”), a Chinese translation of Kytice, a collection of ballads by Czech folklorist and poet Karel Jaromir Erben, which were translated by Lin Shih-hui (林蒔慧), Sia Pei- lun (夏沛倫), Lu Chi-hung (呂齊弘) and Chen Yu-ju (陳宥汝).
That evening, the 2020 Czech-language film Charlatan, loosely based on the life of Jan Mikolasek, an early 20th-century herbal healer who was jailed by Czechoslovakia’s communist regime, is to be screened at an outdoor plaza in the library.
The Pingtung County Government in a statement on Monday thanked the office for “taking the Czech Republic to Pingtung,” praising it for giving locals the chance to enjoy Czech culture without having to travel abroad.
It said that despite COVID-19 reducing economic, trade and travel activities around the world, “beautiful things like arts and culture are not constrained by time and space.”
In March, Patrick Rumlar, head of the Czech Economic and Cultural Office, visited Pingtung, and was impressed by the facilities there, including the performing arts center, which is home to Taiwan’s third-largest pipe organ, the statement said.
Rumlar also praised the award-winning Pingtung Civic Park, also known as HEITO 1909, a 20-hectare urban park carved out of the ruins of a Taiwan Sugar Corp factory, and the VIP Zone, an urban renewal project in an old military village, it said.
Rumlar was eager to travel to Pingtung again as soon as he learned of the Taipei Chamber Players’ concert, which inspired the five-day “Czech in Pingtung” festival, the statement said.
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