An opera portrayal of Bohumil Hrabal, dreamer and seeker of beauty in the everyday
The New StageApproximate running time
1 hour 10 minutes, no intermissionLanguage
In Czech, subtitles in Czech, EnglishPremiere
December 14, 2017
The opera Don Hrabal depicts the turbulent life of the great and highly singular Czech author, from his childhood to the moment before he voluntarily brought it to an end by jumping from a hospital window. Admirers of Bohumil Hrabal’s work and philosophy of life are now afforded the opportunity to meet the brilliant storyteller and witty commentator as an opera character!
The National Theatre Chorus and Orchestra
In the company of the three women who played crucial roles in his life, Hrabal lays bare his innermost feelings, freely guiding us through them against the backdrop of the history of the second half of the 20th century. Assisting him on his voyage is a chorus of his beloved cats and a flock of pigeons, with the latter bearing witness to his very final moments before his fall from the window of the Bulovka hospital in Prague. The over one hour long piece combines a variety of musical styles and rhythms, ranging from jazz, pop and dance to the modern opera idiom. The story blends elements of everydayness with absurdity and black humour.
Besides composing, the contemporary Czech artist Miloš Orson Štědroň also writes texts which he sets to music, with the fruit of his work being remarkable cross–genre music-theatre projects. He has paid systematic attention to distinguished Czech figures (Ivan Blatný, Jaroslav Hašek, František Kupka, Josef Gočár, Jan Hus, Johann Gregor Mendel, Václav Havel, Jan Zábrana, Josef Škvorecký). Don Hrabal is Orson’s second opera, following A Human Tragicomedy, inspired by the writer/philosopher Ladislav Klíma’s drama, which premiered at the Estates Theatre in 2003.
Photographer fot the production: Hana Smejkalová
Photo and video gallery
Where to buy tickets
The National Theatre sells tickets up to 6 months in advance. On 1 June at 9am we started selling tickets for performances of Drama, Ballet, Opera and Laterna magika until the end of November 2022.
What to wear?
By their appearance, attire and behaviour, the audience is obliged to adhere to the accustomed practice expected from them when attending a theatre performance.
Parking at the National Theater
Buffets on the New Stage
Use Café Nona for refreshments on the New Stage.