Debuting in 2015 and hailed for its “high-quality productions” (Hospodářské noviny) and “sophistication” (Prague Post), Classical Movements’ Prague Summer Nights: Young Artists Music Festival (PSN) affords aspiring young professionals in the world of opera and orchestra the opportunity to perform in some of Europe’s most historic venues and offers fully-staged opera productions, orchestral performances, chamber music concerts, an opera scenes program, and even a cabaret concert.
The 30-day festival features 18 performances, coachings, masterclasses, lessons, and career development opportunities for its participants. Past programs have featured performances in the famed Estates Theatre, Rudolfinum, and Smetana Hall of Prague and, in 2017, the program made its first trip to Salzburg, performing in the Große Saal of the Mozarteum.
In 2018, PSN is proud to return to the historic Estates Theater, located in the heart of one of Europe’s most beautiful and historic cities, Prague. Fully-staged performances of Le nozze di Figaro and Die Zauberflöte, with orchestra, will be presented on the stage of the Estates with professional sets and historic costumes from the National Theater.
The Prague Summer Nights Festival Orchestra will play all opera performances and, in addition, will perform their own program on the stage of the Estates Theatre as well as two other concerts of varying repertoire in Tábor and the surrounding cities of Prague. Participants will have the opportunity to perform in the PSN chamber music program where they will receive coachings with members of the Czech Philharmonic and the PSN faculty. Chamber music performances will be held in the Gothic Hall of Tábor and the famed Rudolfinum of Prague.
For vocalists, additional concerts at the festival include an opera scenes program which will feature scenes from important Czech operas such as Dvořák’s Rusalka and Smetana’s Bartered Bride. Singers will work directly with coaches and faculty from the Czech National Theater and the Prague Conservatory on diction, language, acting, and character development. A cabaret performance of music from the American Songbook and Broadway, including the music of Leonard Bernstein, George Gershwin, Stephen Sondheim, Irving Berlin, Kurt Weill, and Cole Porter will take place in a famous Prague jazz club.
“I cannot say this enough, this has been one of the most rewarding and fun opera experiences I’ve had! Not only because we were lucky enough to perform in the Estates Theater, but more so because of the camaraderie and friendships I have made, that will last a lifetime."
“Our brass sectional was great yesterday. Ladislav Kozderka, first chair trumpet of the Czech Philharmonic, was super nice and lowkey (not intimidating). Every time he had a critique for a specific person, he would compliment them on something else. He had great advice and was super helpful.”
“It truly is a joy to be here in Prague and spending so much time with this group of people. Everyone works so hard, and when all the different parts come together, the music we create is absolutely magical. There is much pleasure in growing and bonding with a very talented group of musicians.”
“Today I attended the Brass sectionals of Sibelius Symphony No. 2 and Dvorak Symphony No. 9, led by clinician Ladislav Kozderka who holds the position of principal trumpet of the Czech Philharmonic. I offered to be his personal metronome and he humbly laughed, saying "no, no, you must know this piece so much more than me!" He let me conduct the entirety of both symphonies, stopping every section to give feedback. I kept wanting to pinch my cheek because I knew all the words of wisdom was coming from one of the leaders of the orchestra that loves and owns Dvorak more than anywhere else in the world.”
“Plzen audition is a great segue for every singers to bridge the gap between the student and professional. The audition itself had a very friendly environment while still keeping the professionalism. I felt very honored to have met the director of Plzen Opera House and personally work with the head coach of the Czech National Opera House. Hopefully in the next two years, I will be able to come back to Plzen to work with this beautiful company.”
“I have had the most wonderful 4 weeks I could hope for!"
“I really enjoyed working with Dr. Jelena Nosková in the masterclass. She had wonderful suggestions and I felt my voice blossoming in the short time we worked together. I felt that it was very valuable to get some suggestions from someone I’d never worked with before. I thoroughly appreciate having this opportunity!”
“It was a pleasure for me being part of the festival, I learned a lot in Prague! Thank you for believing in my talent.”
“Thank you so much for the opportunity! I learned so much in that month, that I’m just hoping to retain a tiny bit of it! My teacher even noticed that my high notes have improved in tone. The program was absolutely amazing, and the people you brought together for it were even more so.”
“Thank you again for the incredible opportunity! I had an amazing trip and made so many memories.”
“Thank you for giving me the opportunity. It was an amazing experience with countless memories. Thank you again.”
"Thank you PRAGUE SUMMER NIGHTS so much for the incredible opportunity to work with you in Prague, and the amazing opportunities I’ve received!"
“A better experience could not have taken place for me during the first annual Prague Summer Nights Festival. I will forever take with me the memories and knowledge gained during my time with many wonderful musicians.”
"Prague Summer Nights was an incredible experience for me. I made friendships that will last a lifetime and learned so much about myself as a performer. Sometimes when you are engrossed in the whirlwind of hard, dedicated work it is difficult to see your own progress. Just months after the program I already feel a difference and ease of approach to my performing, as well as a greater awareness of not only what I can improve, but HOW I can improve. Having sung an opera where Mozart first conducted it is no small honor either! Thank you for the experience of a lifetime."
“Such an incredible experience getting a lesson and performing in a masterclass today with Walter Seyfarth, 30-year clarinetist of the Berlin Philharmonic, my favorite orchestra. My time in Prague has been a clarinetist’s dream! Very grateful.”
“Thanks for a great summer! The Prague experience was unforgettable. Thanks again.”
“I just wanted to take the opportunity again to thank you for this wonderful program you have created. I am still in awe of what took place over this last month, from Smetana Hall, to the Dvorak Museum, and finally Don Giovanni at the Estates Theatre! I honestly don’t know how you did it!"