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Prague Choral Meetings

Prague Summer Choral Meeting och Advent Choral Meeting - HrvatskaPrague Summer Choral Meeting och Advent Choral Meeting - HrvatskaМеждународный фестиваль хоров в ПрагеPrague Summer Choral Meeting and Advent Choral Meeting magyarPrague Summer Choral Meeting och Advent Choral Meeting danskPrague Summer Choral Meeting och Advent Choral Meeting svenskaPrague Summer Choral Meeting och Advent Choral Meeting Suomen TasavaltaPrague Summer Choral Meeting och Advent Choral Meeting norskPraskie Letnie Spotkania Chóralne i Praskie Adwentowe Spotkania ChóralnePrague Summer Choral Meeting och Advent Choral MeetingPrague Summer Choral Meeting och Advent Choral MeetingPrague Summer Choral Meeting och Advent Choral Meeting

Festival Internazionale dei Cori di PragaÎntrunirea Corală de Vară Pragheză ( Prague Summer Meeting) și Întrunirea Corală din Postul Crăciunului (Advent Coral Meeting) Festival Internacional da Música Coral em PragaPrague Summer Choral Meeting and Advent Choral MeetingFestival International des Chorales à PragueEncuentro Coral de Verano en Praga y el Encuentro Coral de Adviento PragaPrager Adventsfest der Chormusik und Prager SommerchortreffenPrague Summer Choral Meeting och Advent Choral Meeting - HrvatskaPrague Summer Choral Meeting och Advent Choral Meeting Suomen TasavaltaPrague Summer Choral Meeting och Advent Choral MeetingPraha suvine kooride kokkusaamine

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Prague Choral Meetings 2017

Prague Spring Choral Meeting 

April 28-May 1, 2017

Prague Summer Choral Meeting:

July 13-16, 2017

August 3-6, 2017

Prague Autumn Choral Meeting:

November 9-12, 2017

November 16-19, 2017

Prague Advent Choral Meeting:

November 23-26, 2017

November 30-December 3, 2017

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Prague Spring Choral Meeting
March 17-20, 2016

Prague Summer Choral Meeting
July 14-17, 2016
August 4-7, 2016

Prague Autumn Choral Meeting
November 10-13, 2016
November 17-20, 2016

Prague Advent Choral Meeting 2016
November 24-27, 2016
December 1-4, 2016

Prague Advent Choral Meeting 2015

Prague Advent Choral Meeting


November 12-15, 2015
November 19-22, 2015
November 26-29, 2015
December 3-6, 2015

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Prague Advent Choral Meeting 2014

November 20-23, 2014
November 27-30, 2014
December     4-7, 2014

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Prague Summer Choral Meeting 2014

Prague Advent Choral Meeting

July 17-20 , 2014

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Prague Advent Choral Meeting 2013

November 21-24, 2013
December 5-8, 2013
December 12-15, 2013

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notesProgram v češtině

November 22-25, 2012
December 6-9, 2012

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December 1 - 4, 2011
December 8-11, 2011

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Advent Choral Meeting

December 2 - 5, 2010
December 9-12, 2010

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Advent Choral Meeting

December 3 - 6, 2009
December 10-13, 2009

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Advent Choral Meeting
December 4 - 7, 2008

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Advent in Prague

The Christmas spirit can be felt from the onset of advent, which starts the first advent Sunday before Christmas Eve. Advent (adventus in Latin) means the "arrival". This is a time of strict fasting, where no joy, dance or singing is permitted. As can be seen from the name, its origins are purely religious.

During advent, towns put up Christmas trees and shop windows are decorated in traditional themes. The largest Christmas trees in the country can be found in Prague in the Old Town Square and at the Prague Castle, where Christmas carols and songs are sung. Boxes for charity purposes are usually placed under these trees. The historic districts of towns throughout the country host Christmas markets where traditional Christmas items can be found - Christmas decorations: straw, wooden, glass, gingerbread, etc. as well as candles, sparklers, nativity scenes, advent wreaths, ceramics, Christmas cards, toys, sweets, mistletoe, chocolate decorations, traditional Christmas dough decorations, etc. There are also demonstrations of traditional folk crafts - blacksmiths, glassmakers, woodcarvers and makers of holiday decorations.

 

Roaming Masked Characters

It is believed, in many European nations, that during long winter nights the powers of the earth, wind and sky fight a fierce battle with demonic creatures. During this time of year the Sun, it seems, has lost the battle. Throughout the entire month of December, folk Christmas traditions are abound with mysterious creatures and characters, all shrouded in hidden symbolism. People often dress up like these characters strolling from house to house and through the dimly lit streets during the evening hours. These characters include:

Barborky (St. Barbara’s Day)
Barborky have very little to do with St. Barbara, except for the name. They used to visit rural homes on the eve of St. Barbara’s Day. Their costumes varied according to the individual region - sometimes wearing white dresses tied by a wide blue or red ribbon around their waist with both ends hanging down the left side of their body. So they would not be recognized, their hair was worn over their faces with a flower chain or a crown on their heads.  In the right hand they would carry a broom and in the left, a bundle or basket with presents. In some regions they wore a white cloth and tulle veil, or black dresses.
What do these mysterious Barborky do? Their arrival was signaled by the thrashing of their brooms on the windows and a ringing bell, after which they would enter the house and proclaim: "We have come from the Chapel of Drazíc to inspect your children, and to see whether they have been good or not this year. St. Nicholas will be arriving soon from far, far away, to bring great gifts to all the children who have been good. The angels have told St. Nicholas where all the good children live and these children will receive precious gifts from him. Now we must leave on to the next house, and if you children are good, we shall see you next year again." Good children were never afraid of Barborky. 

St. Nicholas

The evening before St. Nicholas Day, December 5, St. Nicholas strolls around the city, accompanied by an Angel and a Devil, visiting children and handing out presents. First, he asks the children whether they have been good and if not, they must promise they will be better next year. In Central Europe, there is no association of this St. Nicholas with the Western character of St. Nicolaus, also known as Santa Claus (like in England, USA, Sweden or elsewhere) who brings presents at Christmas. The St. Nicholas tradition is based on the legend of St. Nicholas, a bishop who lived in the 4th century in Asia Minor and was renowned for his religious life and charity. St. Nicholas gives presents in all Slavic countries. This tradition became very popular and the character of St. Nicholas, dressed in a long coat with a crosier in his hand, is now always accompanied by a devil and an angel, representing the antimony of good and evil.

Christmas tree and Christmas Eve

Christmas trees are usually decorated on Christmas Eve, December 24, or earlier in some families.  Nativity scenes are arranged, Christmas presents are wrapped and preparations for Christmas dinner are made. The Czech traditional Christmas dinner consists of fish soup, breaded fried carp fillets and potato salad. As the Christmas menu varies from region to region as well as family to family, there are indeed a whole host of recipes used. Tourists can also enjoy the Czech Christmas atmosphere as most of the restaurants and hotels offer traditional Czech Christmas meals.

The tradition of decorating Christmas trees is not very old in the Czech Republic. Legend has it that the first Christmas tree in Prague was erected for Christmas in 1812 at the Liben Chateau by the director of the Theater of the Estates J. K. Liebich for his guests.  Soon after, the Czech aristocracy and wealthy townspeople followed his lead and in the 1840, the tradition of Christmas tree decorating was wide-spread. In the past, trees were decorated with sweets, various folk ornaments made from wood, ginger bread or dough, although nowadays they have mostly been replaced by blown glass and colorful tinsel.  However, traditional ornaments made from natural materials are slowly making their comeback including straw ornaments, apples, nuts and the orange fruit of the Chinese lantern plant. Originally, the Christmas tree was hung tip-down, not standing upright. Nowadays, the trees are taken down on the day of the Magi or the following Sunday.

Christmas is a family holiday where no one should stay home alone. That’s why the entire family usually meets at the Christmas dinner table and if someone lives alone, they are invited over by friends or neighbors. The festive dinner is followed by the special moment which children look forward to all year long - unwrapping the presents from under the tree that were left by baby Jesus. To get the presents they wished for, many children write letters to baby Jesus before Christmas. On Christmas Eve, baby Jesus enters each home and leaves presents under the tree. He lights the candles and lights on it and then disappears without being seen just before the Christmas bell rings. Christmas carols are usually sung under the lit Christmas tree. The most famous are: Christ the King is Born (originated in the 15th century), Wanting Him to Fall Asleep (17th century), Merry Feast of Yuletide (late 17th century), Come All Ye Shepherds (from 1847) and Silent Night (originally Austrian from 1818), as well as Czech carols: Pujdem spolu do Betléma (Come Together to Bethlehem), Stojí vrba kosatá, Dej Buh stestí (May God Bless You).
At midnight, people usually go to church for J. J. Ryba’s Czech Christmas Mass.

Christmas Today

There are numerous special Christmas events organized throughout the city. Exhibitions, concerts in churches and concert halls, advent music festivals, fund raisers, special programs for children - something for everybody. Czech Christmas cannot be complete without the Czech teacher and composer Jan Jakub Ryba’s (1765 - 1815) Christmas Mass with folk and pastoral elements Hey, Master. It is performed in churches throughout the advent season.
Advent time is not only about exhibitions and concerts. People clean and decorate their houses before Christmas. Gifts for family and friends are purchased, Christmas and New Year’s cards are sent, Christmas bread and other Christmas pastries are baked (vanilla rolls, sugar cookies). Christmas trees are bought, typically spruces, firs or pines. Around December 20 big tubs with live carp for sale appear in the streets of town.

 

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