PHOTO Report from 26. Flora Theatre Festival in PDF
Flora Theatre Festival is
— one of the most significant cultural events in the Czech Republic, which maps the current trends in contemporary theatre and reflects artistic and social phenomena framed by a specific motto each year
— traditional festival with strong and positive response from audiences as well as media which consistently combines performances of drama productions of renowned German-speaking, Czech and Slovak repertoire theatres with the newest Central European works from the contemporary dance and performance art scene
— multi-genre festival thematically complemented by a rich off programme (discussions, workshops, concerts, screenings, installations, etc.)
— the largest presentation of live art in the Olomouc Region
— an activity which manages to closely connect the spectators with the performers through discussions, presentations, seminars and workshops and purposefully educates hundreds of participants – including accredited university students of six Czech and Slovak universities actively participating in the educational programme FloraLab
— a platform original in its dramaturgical structure, well-respected by theatre makers – a place for interdisciplinary encounters with a unique inspirational and community feel
Flora maintains a sharp upward tendency and each year I am surprised at how they can move even higher. Flora is a world-class festival.
Kamila Polívková, director and costume designer
There is no need to look all that far when looking for well-running examples of „good practice“.
Ján Balaj, curator of the international festival Divadelná Nitra, Slovakia
Flora Theatre Festival is the most amazing festival I know!
Stefanie Reinsperger, German-speaking Actress of 2015
The city of Olomouc can be really proud of Flora. It is of course my honour to be the face of such a festival!
Stanislav Majer, Czech Actor of 2016
It’s amazing here! People don’t disperse after the productions but go together to the next one.
It’s like a rock’n’roll festival. It is not important if you are a technician, actor, director, dramaturge, festival organizer or an audience member coming to a production. You do not feel like a festival guest here but as part of the family.
Actor Franz Pätzold, Nestroy Preis 2020 laureate, Residenztheater München & Burgtheater Wien
The organizers can be pleased that their focus on more demanding productions as well as unique community atmosphere make their event increasingly relevant not only in the local but also European theatre circles.
Jan H. Vitvar, head of the cultural section of the weekly Respekt – reflecting on the last “precovid” annual (2019)
The opening production of the festival attacked all the senses of the audience and stunned them with the rough and expressive actors’ performances.
Lucia Galdíková, Mloki.sk about 9 Tage wach, the opening production of the 23 Flora by Staatsschauspiel Dresden
Holonics has done great justice to the festival motto. I have probably never heard words uttered on stage with such depth of meaning. A very dignified ending to the most ambitious Czech festival.
Petra Zachatá, Divadelní noviny about Die Blechtrommel, the final production of the 23 festival by Berliner Ensemble
Thanks to the excellent dramaturgical selection, each production was not only artistic but also a civic experience which Olomouc is not usually used to.
Petra Kupcová, Divadelní noviny – reflecting on the non-traditional autumn Flora (2021)
The festival has something calm, meditative and generous about it. These are precisely the attributes that we must not lose in the current world.
Eliška Raiterová, Divadelní noviny – reflecting on the last festival edition (2022)
I can say we are grateful for the opportunity to be here. It was an honour to open the Flora Theatre Festival.
Norwegian choreographer Ingun Bjørnsgaard
Flora brings productions that ask questions about man as such, the society we live in, and theatre itself. At the same time, it is a festival with utterly beautiful, perfect atmosphere.
Veronika Štefanová, Czech Radio Vltava
I consider Flora the most progressive festival in the country. (…) when you arrive there, you will not want to leave.
Lenka Dombrovská, Divadelní noviny
The productions Flora offers are often hidden gems and provide the audience with new perspectives.
Tereza Cigánková, Taneční aktuality
Flora is the Czech festival that strives most for continuous links, for a deeper dramaturgy. It is not just a bazaar of projects that are currently en vogue or have received awards. Flora attempts to express clear views as to what contemporary progressive theatre is all about.
Ivan Buraj, umělecký šéf HaDivadla
I consider Flora Theatre Festival the most prestigious theatre festival in the Czech Republic.
Jan Horák, artistic director of Studio Hrdinů, Prague
Flora Theatre Festival ranks among the most dramaturgically thought-out festivals in the country. Thanks to its generous time frame, interdisciplinary diversions and sound discussions,
it already resembles a smaller Wiener Festwochen…
Petra Zachatá, Divadelní noviny
The best Czech theatre festival.
Dušan D. Pařízek, director
When you meet someone from the Residenztheater please tell them by heartfelt: “Danke”, because I died and was born again.
Martin Macháček for the festival Zpravodaj magazine – in response to the festival performance of the Balkan macht frei production by Oliver Frljić
I’ve heard that Flora Theatre Festival is like Woodstock that it’s the best festival ever – crazy people, amazing audience and everyone is so friendly… And it’s true!
Sebastian Klink, German director
Flora Theatre Festival was held for the first time in 1997 as a mini-showcase of Moravian multi-ensemble theatres from Olomouc, Brno, Opava and Ostrava, which featured four productions in total on a single festival scene. The festival opened to theatre makers from the entire country in 1999 and began occasionally including foreign productions (primarily from Slovakia).
Flora Theatre Festival expanded from the building of the Moravské divadlo to other places, which the festival team began to adapt into festival venues in May 2004. Thanks to Flora, an important theatre infrastructure is being created and the festival has an irreplaceable position in making interesting Olomouc locations more visible and artistically valuable. That same year, Flora significantly changed its programme scope and the mostly drama theatre festival was transformed into a multi-genre project, which also began to feature the newest works of the contemporary dance and performance art scene in Olomouc and therefore radically changed the character of the festival.
An important milestone was the change of the festival organizer in 2008. Divadlo Konvikt theatre (later transformed into a public benefit organization DW7) took over the organization from the Moravske divadlo (a state-funded organization). The activities of the new organizer have always been primarily associated with students of art-oriented studies at Palacký University Olomouc. The intentional cooperation with young, flexible and creative minds resulted in significant acceleration and Flora gained the renown of an inventive and inspiring festival in the Czech cultural context; there are around 150 festival staff at present working for the festival including volunteers. The festival started also focus on production of new pieces and initiated several world premieres.
Flora secured its position on the “Czech-Slovak cultural map” as one of the most respected local festival activities over the period of 2009–2015. Since the anniversary 20th edition (2016) it has progressed significantly and established itself as an important Central European festival with significant participation of foreign guests.
Flora Theatre Festival – as an independent event – has been taken out of the portfolio of the activities of the public benefit organization DW7 and is organized by a newly formed subject as of September 2019. Flora Theatre Festival, z.s. was founded by the current festival staff to ensure more effective running of the project and has guaranteed its continuous development for already 4 years. From October 2021 to May 2022 it has successfully realized two festival editions in logistically and financially challenging conditions of the covid-19 pandemics.
The many years of effort of the organizers has transformed the originally humble festival of four Moravian ensembles into an international event whose impact significantly transcends the borders of the Olomouc Region. It has become a place for theatre encounters and the establishment of artistic and production links. It provides audiences of several thousand people with an opportunity to see the newest trends and tendencies in non-commercially oriented theatre and transforms the historical and administrative centre of the Olomouc Region into a live and dynamically developing theatre platform.