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Czech Republic: Romani actor and musician Milan Šenki ("Korytár") has passed away

24.4.2015 5:11
Milan Šenki (PHOTO:  Romano voďi archive)
Milan Šenki (PHOTO: Romano voďi archive)

 On Tuesday, 21 April 2015, Milan Šenki, known by the nickname "Korytár", passed away at 14:15 at the age of 70. His son Milan announced his passing on Facebook.  

Šenki came from Humenné in Slovakia and began his mandatory military service during the 1960s. After that he remained in Prague for the rest of life, where he married.

Music was always a part of his life. He also worked as an actor.

He performed in several supporting roles in feature-length films, such as the famous Czech action detective film "Nahota na prodej" ("Nudity for Sale") by director Vít Olmer, or "Kdo se bojí, ten utíká…"  ("He Who is Afraid Runs Away") by Dušan Klein. Mr Šenki did not have a completely easy childhood, but he never complained about it.  

"In Humenné I only attended primary school, I had to begin making money and help my mother. My father died young and I had to take care of my family. The family was simply more important at that moment. However, you can bet I regret that I didn't go on with my studies. At the age of 14, I founded a band and led it. Dad, when he was still alive, had taught me to understand musical instruments, and then it was up to me. I fell in love with music. I first played the accordion and then the saxophone," he said in 2009 in an interview for the magazine Romano voďi.

Music was Mr Šenki's fate and he frequently played in villages for both funerals and weddings. After completing his mandatory military service he began to work for Czech Railways in Prague, where he remained less than a year.  

He then went to work for the Coal Warehouses of Prague for 15 years. He became a truck driver and then made it into the Prague Road Service, where he remained.  

In 2003, Mr Šenki went into business for himself as a street cleaner in Prague. He also played many roles in films made by leading Czech directors.  

"That was a beautiful time, a lot of fun, unforgettable experiences," he recalled in an interview for Romano voďi. "I was introduced to film by Láďa Goral, whom you can also see in many Czech films. Neither one of us was afraid of the cameras, or the crew, or the famous actors. We were enormously self-assured. That's an enormous advantage for an actor. I can say that thanks to that, I can play any role," he said.  

Mr Šenki also performed alongside Mariána Labuda, Jiří Langmajer and Simona Stašová in "Nemocný bílý slon" ("Sick White Elephant") by director Karel Smyczek. At the beginning of the 1990s he was in the film "Divoká svině" ("Wild Boar") by director Jan Kubišta, in which he had the opportunity to play alongside Ivana Chýlková, Ondra Pavelka, and Marek Vašut.  

Most recently Mr Šenki performed for television in the "Nemocnice na kraji města II" serial ("Hospital on the Outskirts of Town II:) and the feature-length film "ROMing". Mi del o Del tumenge loki phuv! 

hor, ryz, translated by Gwendolyn Albert
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