publikováno: 21.8.2017

The Czech Music Council Award is going to be presented to composer and art director of Ostrava Days PETR KOTÍK on Wednesday 23rd August 2017 at 7 p.m. in Cineport, Provoz Hlubina in Ostrava at the occasion of the preview of Czech TV documentary “Untamable Kotík” and the eve of Ostrava Days 2017.

The award goes to Kotík for initiation and organization of the Institute and the Festival of New and Experimental Music Ostrava Days and the support of contemporary Czech music.

PETR KOTÍK (*1942), the composer, conductor, flautist and initiator of projects and companies supporting contemporary music in the Czech Republic and in the United States, where he has lived since 1969, has been the art director of the unique organization in the Czech Republic Ostrava Centre for New Music since 2001. It has been organized by the international institute since 2001 as well as the festival Ostrava Days and the biennial NODO/ New Opera Days Ostrava since 2012. He is also the founder and art director of the residential international chamber orchestra Ostravská banda (since 2005).

The project of the Ostrava Center for New Music emerged from Kotík’s life-long specialization. When he was a student in 1961, he and his fellow composers Vladimír Šrámek and Jan Rychlík founded Musica viva pragensis as well as the experimental band QUaX in 1969 with members Václav Zahradník, Josef Vejvoda, Jiří Stivín and Jan Hynčica. The political situation in 1968 made Petr Kotík leave Czechoslovakia for the United States in 1969, where he founded S.E.M. Ensemble in 1970, which developed into The Orchestra of the S.E.M. Ensemble in 1992. The scope of Kotík’s composing and organization activities made it possible for Petr Kotík to meet the significant personalities of 20th and 21st century music since the early 1960s. Petr Kotík is now the longest-living John Cage’s associate (since 1964). Other Kotík’s associates are Frederic Rzewski, Cornelia Cardew, Christian Wolff etc. The circle of Kotík’s music friends widened after he arrived in the US: Morton Feldman, Earle Brown, Alvin Lucier as well as composers with whom Kotík created the New York scene Downtown in the 1970s, such as Philip Glass, who celebrated Kotík’s 75th birthday on 21st June in the top New York club (le) poisson rouge.*

The project of the Ostrava Centre for New Music has been unique in the Czech Republic. It has provided the Czech music life with an international scope since 2001 and due to its form of an educational international institute for young Czech and foreign composers, which results in immediate realization of compositions at the festival with time-tested pieces by their experienced foreign supervisors and famous names of avantgarde founders, it became progressive and viable.

The award also allows for the fact how Petr Kotík is able to react to difficult conditions of project realization, which does not concern money only. By founding Ostravská banda, he cultivates interpretation qualities of the repertoire, when he has limited funds, he reacts by choosing various formats of performance in cooperation with the National Moravian-Silesian Theatre, the stronger partner in the field of production, in the project NODO/New Opera DaysOstrava, which opens up new possibilities for the Ostrava center.  

Czech Music Council is the umbrella non-governmental organization, the Czech section of the UNESCO International Music Council. It associates about fifty Czech associations and organizations from the field of performing practice, education, media and copyright organizations for classic and popular music for both professionals and amateurs.

The awards have been given out since 1994. They are honorable prizes, but they come with graphic works by Czech artists. The awards are annual and they do not distinguish categories such as lifetime achievement or activity. Foreign artists receive the award for promotion of Czech music abroad. The awards go to stars as well as people working in the background of music culture and regions knowing that culture can only work with sufficient professional and production background.

In the past, the award went to conductors Sir Charles Mackerras, Jiří Bělohlávek, Zdeněk Mácal, Serge Baudo, directors David Poutney, David Radok, pianist Ivan Moravec, Daniel Wiesner or Due Boemi di Praga, Spirituál kvintet, Iva Bittová and many others.

CONTACT: Lenka Dohnalová, CMC secretary,
+420 603 584 218