Smetana days

International Classical Music Festival in Pilsen

It is our honour to welcome you to the 44th year of Smetana Days, a music festival that has gained the popularity and respect of the general cultural public for more than forty years of its existence. This year, it will take place from 7 March to 11 April 2024.

As in previous years, you can expect a variety of genres, an interesting dramaturgy and a combination of music, literature, drama and art. The main themes of this year are the Smetana 200 (the 200th anniversary of Smetana´s birth), the Year of Czech Music and the Market and Capital in Czech Culture of the 19th Century. These themes will naturally be reflected in a number of artistic projects. The Market and Capital in Czech Culture of the 19th Century will be the main topic of the traditional interdisciplinary scientific symposium, which will take place from 29 February to 2 March 2024.

The Smetana Days Festival will be officially opened on 7 March 2024 with Bedřich Smetana's cycle of symphonic poems My Country. We are cooperating with a number of institutions of regional and national scope to create the programme. Exhibitions, workshops, theatre and concert performances are prepared, in which important personalities of the domestic and international scene will be presented to the audience.

A strong artistic experience can be expected not only from the opening concert, we can look forward to a series of chamber concerts at the House of Music or the Pilsner Urquell Visitor Centre. You can look forward to the vocal ensemble Skety, the traditional concert of the Bedřich Smetana Elementary Music School, or the Kühn Children's Choir. The chamber concerts will feature the Orbis Trio, guitarists Štěpán Rak and Jan-Matěj Rak, the Smetana Trio, the Ballot Quintet, the Talich Quartet and the Czech Nonet, which celebrates its 100th anniversary in 2024.

There are also two evenings dedicated to melodrama - The First Czech Melodramas and Czech Melodramas of Today. Both evenings will be directed by musicologist, curator of the Czech Museum of Music and associate professor of the Academy of Performing Arts Věra Šustíková.

The Smetanomania project is unique nationwide - the complete performance of Bedřich Smetana's piano works in three days (from 5 to 7 April 2024 at the House of Music). The project is supervised by pianist and director of the Dvořák Prague International Music Festival Jan Simon. The schools involved in the project are the Conservatory of Plzeň, the Janáček Academy of Performing Arts, the Faculty of Fine Arts and Music of the University of Ostrava, as well as renowned pianists Ivo Kahánek, Jan Jiraský, Igor Ardašev, Daniel Wiesner, Matouš Zukal, Stanislav Gallin, Eliška Tkadlčíková, Anna Gaálová, Pavol Praženica, Anna Pham, Eliška Novotná and Lukáš Michel.

Composed programmes are also part of the festival's dramaturgy - Vzpomínka na Plzeň (Memories of Pilsen) - Bedřich Smetana's Student Diary and Smetana & Dvořák to Patrons. This evening will also satisfy the taste sensations of the audience: the programme includes a tasting of sorbets from the time of Bedřich Smetana.

The JK Tyl Theatre will contribute to the festival programme with the chamber opera I am a Princess of Fools.

Music and art bring people together, create interpersonal bonds, bring joy and break away from the usual stereotype. In the spirit of this idea, we have - as in previous years - paid every possible attention to the preparation of the programme, and we hope that you will find pleasure and inspiration in our offer.