History of Laterna magika
Laterna magika counts its history since the year 1958. The first period, created by the director Alfréd Radok and stage-designer Josef Svoboda began at the world exhibition EXPO 58 in Brussels, Belgium. The programm showed in the Czechoslovak pavilion was named Laterna magika and later gave its name to the theatre in Prague, reconstructed at 1959 after the worldwide success on EXPO.
The second period was presented on the EXPO 67 in Montreal, Canada and as well as on the EXPO 70 in Osaka, Japan and with these performances the theatre travelled the world.
In the mid - seventieth became Laterna magika the part of the National Theatre in Prague, on the head with the artistic director Josef Svoboda, who was at the beginning of this special medium, which does not use the words, only the combination of film projection and life stage medias - dance, sound, lights, pantomime, black-theatre e.t.c.
There is a basic effort which is creating the face of Laterna magika till today - searching of the way to a specific theatre which is able to narrate a story by using of different themes and medias as well.
The Laterna magika at the New Stage of the National Theatre
The New Stage was put to the exclusive use of the Laterna magika in 1992. The previous year in 1991, Otomar Krejča and his resuscitated theatre Divadlo Za Branou had returned to the then stage of the Laterna magika, the Theatre Adria. Although the Adria was intended for use by the Laterna magika, while the troupe of the Divadlo za branou was only supposed to rent it, an agreement between both subjects seemed impossible. And since the National Theatre was able to transfer all its artistic activities from the New Stage to the newly reconstructed Estates Theatre, the Laterna magika obtained for the next 18 years a refuge at the New Stage.
The ensuing foundation of the independent state-funded organization Laterna magika formally settled this fact; the delimitation decree issued by the Minister Milan Uhde determined that the Laterna magika would use the New Stage based on a lease. The building was also marked with the new inscription “Laterna magika” with the consent of the National Theatre. Some technical modifications were carried out and the negative consequences of some project drawbacks of the building were thus suppressed. During eighteen years, the artistic identity of the building merged only with programming of the Laterna magika.
The Laterna magika as a separate state-funded institution was closed down by the 31st of December 2009 and since the 1st of January 2010 is Laterna magika part of the structure of New Stage and with the new premieres being introduced on the repertoir: As far as I see (dir. Maria Procházková, February 2013) and Anticodes (dir. Braňo Mazúch, March 2013). The building of the New Stage has been an open space for modern theater in all its forms and genres. The program includes performances by the ensembles of the National Theatre, but it also welcomes independent projects, festivals, artistic exhibitions as well as educational presentations and offers wide accompanying programme.