The Czech-American Experimental Opera Project builds upon the "Music Now-Prague Festival" groundwork established in 1994 and 1995 which successfully brought together Czech and North American composers, performers, music students and audiences in order to initiate and stimulate artistic and cultural exchange. At that time, during March of 1994 and 1995, the "Music Now-Prague Festival", under the direction of founder, Patricia Goodson and co-director Miroslav Pudlak, presented concerts, workshops, and classes that introduced audiences and students to recent music by North American composers. The cultural outreach that was initiated during the festival has continued to this day. Ongoing educational and artistic exchange has resulted in continued composer visits to Prague and Brno by U.S. composers and performers as well as visits to the U.S. by Czech composers and performers.
The Czech-American Experimental Opera Project is developing the base and scope of the previous Music Now tour and festivals, building upon the principles and the musical contacts already established. Under the sponsorship of Long Beach Opera and the Trust for Mutual Understanding, Downtown Opera participated in a collaborative project that involved the creation and world premiere performances of three new operas in the Czech Republic during December, 2002. Three composers' chamber operas were performed back to back in participating venues as part of a Downtown Opera tour to Prague and Brno. Czech composers, Miroslav Pudlak and Ivo Medek, and United States composer, Martin Herman, each composed new works on given shared concepts. The three operas, each one lasting no more than 20 - 30 minutes, were given staged performances at the Barka Theatre in Brno and the Roxy Club Experimental Music Space in Prague, Czech Republic.
Plans for performances in the United States are in development.
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