Renowned music festivals are an integral part of summer in the Czech Republic. The celebrated Prague Spring music festival, which has been taking place every year for more than 70 years, is taking place right now and is hosting the best classical music artists from around the world. Fans of rock or other music genres, however, can look forward to events in Hradec Králové or Ostrava in early July that have been recommended, for example, by the British newspaper The Guardian. Read on for what’s in store for you…
Colours of Ostrava among the bestRecently, the British daily The Guardian called the Colours of Ostrava festival (14 – 17 July 2016) one of the ten best music events in Europe. The festival does not have a long tradition, beginning in 2002, but it has quickly managed to become one of the most popular music and cultural events in the Czech Republic. How come? Stars such as Björk, Bobby McFerrin, Alanis Morissette, John Newman, Sigur Rós or French songstress ZAZ have performed at the festival. This year, Underworld, M83, and even the writer Robert Fulghum will be there.
Colours of Ostrava takes place in the unique architectural grounds of Dolní Vítkovice, which is listed as a European Cultural Heritage site. This place is not stagnant, however, and continues to develop. Proof comes in the form of the brand new Bolt Tower, which was named after sprinter Usain Bolt, who came to Ostrava to compete in the Golden Spike tournament, something you may have already read our website. But back to the Dolní Vítkovice grounds. The Hlubina Mine industrial complex and other buildings are becoming the cultural drivers of Ostrava and, in July, when Colours of Ostrava takes place, also of the Czech Republic. So come and see for yourself why the festival belongs to the ten best in Europe!
Rock for People is a mainstayThe event that transforms the environs of the airport in Hradec Králové into a sea of tents full of fans of excellent music is called Rock for People (3 – 5 July 2016)! The name of the festival can be misleading, as rock is not the only kind of music that can be heard at the festival. It does continue to play a leading role, however.
This year, Massive Attack, The Offspring, Five Finger Death Punch and The Quemists are some of the bands that can be heard in Hradec Králové. Visitors to this event have high standards and want to hear the best. They are used to hearing the likes of Limp Bizkit, Motörhead, Manu Chao, Toma Odella and 30 Seconds to Mars here. Come to Hradec Králové in East Bohemia in early July to see for yourself if Rock for People will uphold its reputation this time round.
Prague festivalsMusic of various genres can be heard in Prague as well. And you can find out if this is true in late June, when the United Islands of Prague festival begins (23 – 26 June 2016). In addition to the broad line-up, visitors appreciate the location: Prague’s beautiful islands, where you will feel you are on vacation in the Mediterranean despite being in Central Europe and with stunning Prague as your backdrop!
A newbie on the Prague festival scene is Metronom (25 – 26 June 2016), which will lure crowds with headliners Iggy Pop and The Prostitutes. The Metronom concerts will be heard throughout Prague’s Stromovka park.If you happen to be in Prague in mid-August and like electro-swing, then be sure to go to Swing Me Prague (13 August 2016). Caravan Palace, the French star of the genre, will be one of the many acts to appear. The festival will be held at the Velká Chuchle horse racing track, which will give the event another dimension, as the track just recently celebrated its one hundredth anniversary.
The Prague Sounds Good festival (23 – 24 August 2016), which will take place directly in the city centre in the Karlín forum, is a great way to end the summer. You can look forward to bands such as Millencolin and NOFX.
Other musical eventsThe Bohemian and Moravian Castles music festival takes place throughout the summer. What makes it special is that the festival events are held in castles and chateaux across the Czech Republic. Popular events include Benátská! (28 – 31 July 2016), which takes place in Liberec. If you like punk and punk rock, rock and roll, hard core, reggae, ska, rockabilly or indie rock, head off to Tábor at the end of July to visit the Mighty Sounds festival (22 – 24 July 2016), where 80% of the bands are from abroad.
Foreign visitors to the Czech Republic are also interested in the unique Brutal Assault festival (10 – 13 August 2016), which is held in the historical fortress of Josefov, a structure that is interesting in and of itself. Visitors to the festival can also combine their musical interests with other activities, such as a trip to Opočno or Nové Město nad Metují.
One summer weekend in the Czech Republic will be devoted to hip-hop. If you like this genre of music, then write Hip Hop Kemp into your diary (18 – 20 August 2016) and circle the airport at Hradec Králové on your map.