In Charge of Culture
The cultural events in Opava are managed by the Mayor’s Office Department at the Municipal Authority of Opava. The department is in charge of:
- monthly and yearly overview of events in town
- promotion of events in the cultural calendar published in the city bulletin Hláska, on the city website, on social networks, and in the Tourist Information Centre
- information about grants, subsidies, or patronage of events
- organization of Easter, farmer, and Christmas markets
- organization of memorial ceremonies
- festivals Bezruč’s Opava and Další břehy (Other Shores), concerts of classical music
- Children’s Day, Summer of Fun in Opava, Lantern Procession, city ball, etc.
Opava manages three state-funded cultural organizations:
- Silesian Theatre
- Petr Bezruč Library
- Opava Cultural Organization
Participating in the cultural events in town is also:
- Centre of Leisure Time
Opava organizes a number of cultural events, which can be viewed in the list of events.
The Past and Present of Culture in Opava
As the former capital of Czech Silesia, Opava has kept its privileged position as the cultural centre of the region. Apart from the Silesian Museum (1814), the oldest one in Bohemia, there is also the Silesian Theatre (1805) with highly regarded opera and drama ensembles, the Puppet Theatre (1951) for children, Matice slezská (founded in 1877, re-established in 1989), the keeper of historical values, and House of Arts that specializes in modern art. The House of Art is run by Opava Cultural Organization, which was founded in 2007 to manage the reconstruction and operation of the Municipal House. Since 2009 there are a gallery, exhibition on the history of Opava “Cesta města“ (“The Town’s Journey”), café, Art Club, and assembly rooms for cultural events. Petr Bezruč Culture House (1946) has hosted numerous concerts, organ competitions, and various cultural events and ceremonies. Petr Bezruč Library (1949) offers many events for the young as well as advanced readers. Continous work in art teaching and folklore revival has been done by Václav Kálik Elementary Art School (1924), which offers musical, dancing and literature and drama programs, Elementary Art School (1964) with an art program, Ilja Hurník Elementary School with accent on musical education, and Centre of Leisure Time Opava (former House of Children and Youth, 1954).
Festivals and Competitions
The greatest festival in town is the cultural festival Bezruč’s Opava, whose first year took place in 1958. The festival is a reminder of Petr Bezruč, the best known native of Opava and the most translated Czech poet. The festival, which is a celebration of literature, music, art, theatre, and film for all generations, takes place in September.
Another well-established festival in town is called Další Břehy (Other Shores). This multigenre festival features theatre, film, music, and poetry. Every year the choice of festival events reflects a continuous search for inspiration, creativity, playfulness, and new ways of communication through art.
Another popular cultural event is Petr Eben International Organ Competition, a prestigious and unique biennial competition, which was first organized in 1978.
Opava is a true seedbed of choirs. One of the oldest choirs in the country is Křížkovský Choir, which was establihed more than a hundred years ago (Pavel Křížkovský was an outstanding composer and teacher – the taught Leoš Janáček). The choir is renowned both at home and abroad. Another well-known choir Pěvecké sdružení slezských učitelek (Singing Society of Silesian Female Teachers) was founded more than four decades ago. In Opava there are many other choirs popular at home as well as abroad (Václav Kálik elementary school choirs – e.g. Jeřabinka, Ilja Hurník elementary school choirs – e.g. Domino, the Silesian University choir, etc.).
There are many gallery, club, or café owners in Opava who offer their spaces for cultural events. The contact list is available in the database of cultural subjects.