This year's edition of the Opera Nova Festival promises to be modern, contemporary, interactive, diverse and daring – both Czech and international.

14.–22. 6. 2024

The Opera Nova, contemporary opera festival, is a showcase of contemporary Czech and international opera creations and innovative festival concept that aims to connect opera with other types of modern art and themes that move nowadays society.

Opera Nova will begin on June 14 with the first of three Czech premieres, György Ligeti’s Le Grand Macabre, a masterpiece that is considered one of the milestones of the 20th century opera creations. After this premiere an extraordinary performance by Lukas Ligeti and his guests entitled Ligeti Late Night will follow, featuring a new semi-improvised composition by this multi-faceted artist. We will then present a number of new operas by Czech and international composers such are works by Jiří Trtík and Šimon Voseček as well as a Czech premiere of the chamber opera The Yellow Wallpaper by the British composer Dani Howard, which was performed last year at London's legendary Sadler's Wells Theatre and at the Copenhagen Opera Festival. Another highlight of the festival will be Les Papillons de Terezín (Butterflies from Terezín) by French composer and conductor Charles Baumstark, a new children’s opera considered as a new version of Hans Krása’s Brundibár.

The Opera Nova Festival, a part of 2024’s Year of Czech Music, is an opportunity for music-goers to meet exceptional Czech and international artists, primarily those from the up-coming generations. Audiences will have the opportunity of encountering the future talents such as Grammy nomine Timur Bekbosunov (aka TIMUR), Logan Lopez Gonzalez, William Morgan, Bella Adamova, Clare Presland, Arnheiður Eiríksdóttir, Eir Inderhaug, designer Maxim Velčovský, costume designer Marianna Stránská, director Josef Doležal, conductor Stephania Childress, pianist Terezie Fialová and violoncellist Hana Baboráková. The National Theatre Orchestra and the State Opera Orchestra will accompany the STRO.MY Ensemble and Prague Philharmonic Children’s Choir for a very unique performance. 

Jiří Rožeň, a representative of the younger generation of Czech conductors, has been appointed artistic curator of the Opera Nova festival for 2024. He has been focusing on 20th century opera at the National Theatre Opera and the State Opera.

One of the missions of the National Theatre and State Opera is to introduce contemporary art in the form of opera-related events and to support diverse artistic activities in this field. As part of this vision, we would like to gradually present the most popular opera pieces from the 20th and 21st century, some of which have already become modern classics, new works commissioned by the National Theatre, as well as the best of opera compositions from recent years. Our goal is to present opera as a continually relevant and vibrant art form reflecting on contemporary global cultural and societal developments, thus directly engaging each one of us.

Another pillar of the festival touches on today’s social issues, whether addressing social inequality, prejudice towards diversity, and the role of women in society, commercialization, or the delicate topic of mental health in our rapidly changing times. Similarly, we realise that our present is rooted in our past, inseparably intertwined. Thus, we have created a programme that also reflects significant historical events, including the 100th anniversary of the death of Franz Kafka, which occurs this year.

A significant part of the dramaturgy of this year's festival is modern technology, an important element that will complement and enhance the festival productions through the implementation of innovative video design, lighting, virtual reality, and video games. Several productions will take place outside the traditional theatre performance spaces, and the National Theatre will once again reach out to opera and contemporary art enthusiasts throughout the city. Performances will be held at the State Opera, on the New Stage of the National Theatre, as well as the ABC Theatre (Divadlo ABC) and Divadlo Bez zábradlí. The festival's concept will also emphasize sustainability in contemporary opera and theatre operations, as we offer our visitors a wide range of accompanying events including informal social gatherings, discussions, screenings, and performances.

The festival first took place in 2018 and 2019.

Organizational team

Artistic Curator
Executive Manager and Artistic Co-Curator

Contacts

Executive Manager and Artistic Co-Curator

Maxim Belčikov
m[teč]belcikov[zav]narodni-divadlo[teč]cz

Production

Anita Jirovská
operanova[zav]narodni-divadlo[teč]cz

Festival partners

Media partners