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Czech Republic: International Romani Day celebration to honor the invisible in Prague

29.3.2016 19:08
The Romani association ARA ART is holding a celebration for International Roma Day 2016.
The Romani association ARA ART is holding a celebration for International Roma Day 2016.

The Romani association ARA ART will be holding its second annual celebrations of International Romani Day on 8 April. This year's theme is "Honoring the Invisible".

Paťiv (respect) will be paid to young Romani people who are disrupting the entrenched stereotypes about Roma that predominate in Czech society. The gala evening will take place on 8 April at 19:30 in the La Fabrika theater in Prague.

Despite the fact that 8 April 2016 marks the 45th anniversary of the first World Romani Congress, the day does not yet have much of a tradition in the Czech Republic. Roma are the largest national minority in the country.

The day is not just an occasion to celebrate, but also an opportunity to emphasize that it is far from the case that the Romani community is connected just with problematic social topics. "The up-and-coming generation of young Roma can no longer passively bide its time in the shadow of the half-truths and slurs in this society that lead to the conviction that if I want to be successful, I must conceal my Romani origin," says ARA ART director David Tišer.

"The dignified celebration of International Romani Day is not just a natural need for us Roma, but also an opportunity to make the invisible visible and to send the message that whatever labels are put on us, we are still a fully-fledged part of this society," Tišer says. This is the second year ARA ART is holding International Romani Day celebrations.

Last year's event, "Students Honor Romani Personalities", is now being followed by this year's "Honoring the Invisible". Representatives of young Roma will be presented who, while they may be at the beginning of their career paths, have already managed to follow through and confound the predominant hypothesis in Czech society that Romani people are perpetually "inadaptable", problematic and unemployable.

The gala evening on International Romani Day will take place in the La Fabrika theater in the Holešovice quarter (Komunardů 30, 170 00 Praha 7) and will include a music program. Those performing will include Gejza Horváth, Antonín Gondolán, Marta Balážová, Gitana, Radek Bagár, Funky Brothers, Jan Bendig, Miro Bartoš and many others.

The entire evening will be broadcast online on ARA ART's YouTube channel. Tickets are available for sale through La Fabrika theater's website HERE.

ARA ART, translated by Gwendolyn Albert
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Culture, Events, International Roma Day, Roma



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