Roman Bělor


Date and place of birth: 1958, Prague, Czech Republic

Living place: Prague, Czech Republic

Theme: culture management, music

ECC Participation: Congress Council

photo: private archive

Culture manager, specialist in administration of art institutions. Director of The Prague Spring International Music Festival, one of the most important permanent events in Central Europe (several dozen artistic occasions in a month). The festival highlights classical and contemporary music. One of Bělor’s goals was to make the music lovers from abroad realize the cultural importance of Prague. In the interviews he reminds that Prague is located west of Vienna.

“Classical music is not old-fashioned, but it needs to be presented in a modern way.”

In the years 1977-1982 Bělor studied economy and management at the Technical University in Prague. Then he worked in techno-economic sector. In 1990, after the transformation, he was appointed the chief manager of the Symphonic Orchestra in Prague and became its director two years later. In the years 1997-2001 Bělor presided the Association of Symphony Orchestras of the Czech Republic.

In 2001 he was appointed the director of The Prague Spring International Music Festival, which was founded in 1946. Budget of the event is established mostly due to private donors. In recent years, income from the sale of tickets approximated 20%. In order to encourage the audience, the festival launched i.a. “matinées” and “nocturnes” – music events for the young, stepping out of line of the rigid formula of classical concert. With time, Bělor and his collaborators started to modify the artistic features of The Prague Spring in order to make it mirror the trends and interests of the 21st century audience. Hence i.a. the turn towards ethnic music. In Prague performed e.g. Anoushka Shankar, known for her collaboration with Sting and Philip Glass, playing sitar compositions inspired by the Indian folk music.

During the 2010 edition of The Prague Spring more than 60 concerts, performances and other events took place. The guests included i.a. John Eliot Gardiner and Monteverdi Choir, Anne-Sophie Mutter, Pierre Boulez and André Previn, but also the legendary Czech rock band, Blue Effect.

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