Czech Centre of the ITI

The Czechoslovak National Centre has been a member of this organisation since it was founded in 1948. After the emergence of an independent Czech Republic the Czech centre was registered at the Ministry of Foreign Affairs CR on 7 October 1993 under registration number 7402.

In 1990 the existing board of the Czechoslovak centre adopted the motion to create two relatively independent sections, one Czech and one Slovak, which would both have equal representation in the Czechoslovak centre’s board. Then in March 1991 at the General Assembly of the Czech board held at the Theatre Institute, a new board of the Czech centre was elected, made up of: Eva Herrmannová (music and drama theatre), Vladimír Vašut (dance theatre), Milan Klíma (education of young dramatists), Helena Albertová (dramatic work), Petr Osolsobě (publications and communications), Jan Burian and Ivo Krobot (drama) and Johana Kudláčková (new theatre). The following representatives were nominated to sit on the federal board: E. Herrmannová, J. Kudláčková and J. Burian, and named as the Chair of the centre the then Director of the Theatre Institute in Prague (and of the seat of the Secretariat of the centre) H. Albertová. A federal board was gradually set up that as well as Czech contained three Slovak representatives (communication committee – Oleg Dlouhý, education of young dramatic artists – doc. S. Šimková, and the music committee – Juraj Beneš), and H. Albertová was elected Chair of the Czechoslovak centre. This board in this structure continued to function until 1993, that is, until the dissolution of the federal republic. After the federation was divided and an independent Czech Republic emerged, the existing Czech board began to function as the full fledged, independent body of the newly emerged Czech centre and remained operating on that basis and in the same structure (but without the participation of M. Klíma and P. Osolsobě) until the next General Assembly in May 2001. 

Main goal: to promote Czech theatre in the world and advance international cooperation in the field of the performing arts.

The Arts and Theatre Institute is the base of the Czech centre of the ITI.

Czech Centre of the ITI: assists foreign guests and anyone interested in obtaining contacts for Czech theatres, theatre organisations, institutions, festival organisers, editorial offices of magazines, producers, and individuals. It provides basic information on Czech theatre, the current repertoire of theatres, and prepares programmes for foreign visitors.

The Czech centre of the ITI mediates meetings for foreign guests with Czech colleagues, assists them in gaining attendance at theatre rehearsals or training programmes, organises visits to museums, archives, libraries, arranges video screenings, organises visits to professional institutions, including schools, and other institutions and organisations. It also helps organise various conferences and seminars.

Activities of the Czech Centre of the ITI:

  • Each year it submits and distributes to all theatres, the media, etc., the Mission Statement on the International Day of the Theatre (sometimes also the International Day of Dance).
  • It regularly participates in international meetings of the ITI – congresses, committee meetings.
  • It helps organise conferences, workshops, seminars and festivals. It assists in arranging foreign participation, promoting and arranging the visits of foreign visitors and observers, etc.
  • It cooperates with the Polish ITI Centre on the basis of a contract on the reciprocal exchange of information and people.
  • In June 1998 it organised a special meeting of ITI centres from around the world on the occasion of the 50th anniversary of the founding of this organisation in Prague, and as part of that meeting a forum was held titled ‘Our Diverse Creativity’ and a discussion on the future of the organisation. The organisation’s Executive Board also met on this occasion and a guest at the meeting was the direction of the Division of Creativity, Cultural Development, and Copyright of UNESCO Ms. Corral. At a join meeting a  ceremony was held to hand out the Uchimura awards to theatre artists from Tunisia and Lithuania. A total of 61  participants from 27 countries attended the meeting.
  • Cooperation on preparation of the international Prague Quadrennial and the organisation of top representatives of the ITI to Prague for this exhibition.
  • The centre regularly organises the Czech section in The World of Theatre, which means that once every two years it prepares an analysis of Czech contemporary theatre over the past two seasons and has it translated into the two official languages (English and French).
  • It prepares and is responsible for renewing the Czech entry in the ITI’s international directory and for updating it on the internet site.
  • The Secretariat of the Czech centre receives numerous visits from foreign guests and provides them with consultation, information, contacts, and admission tickets to shows. They also reply to the many inquiries and requests for information they receive in writing.
  • At present the Czech centre is undergoing transformation. It is trying to revitalise its activities, mobilise membership, change the committees, the chair, and so on.
  • The Czech centre’s publishing activities: the information flows connected with the Arts and Theatre Institute, especially its web portals.
  • Activities in recent years: music, ballet, and directors seminars, UNESCO – ITI Chair – the education of young artists in Bucharest, drama competitions (the European Prize, Onassis, Playwrights Com), and above all participation at professional meetings (status of the artist, mobility, etc.).

The annual membership fee of the Czech national centre of the ITI is 1110 €.

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