Czech Republic: Overview of International Romani Day events
On Wednesday, 8 April, Romani people worldwide will celebrate International Romani Day. This day commemorates the historical first congress of the International Romani Union in Great Britain in 1971, where participants adopted the Romani flag and international anthem.
International Romani Day has been celebrated in the Czech Republic since the 1990s. This year celebrations are planned around the country; the following is an overview of the most significant ones.
Prague: Student Tribute to Romani Figures
"International Romani Day is an occasion to draw attention to some of the pillars of our much-needed national pride, as well as to reflect in different ways together on the problems and the successes of the Romani minority," organizers say in a press release. The gala evening will involve the student's award ceremony accompanied by a rich musical program centered around performances by the younger generation of Romani musicians.
Those performing will be Erika Fečová, Jan Bendig, Jitka Matiová, Funky Brothers, Le Čhavendar and Milan Horváth, with a guest performance by non-Romani musician Ondřej Ruml. The highlight of the evening will be a concert by the Terne Čhave band from Hradec Králové to launch their new CD.
After the awards ceremony and the live music, the evening will end with a party led by DJ I.T. The event will be broadcast live on Czech Television's online station.
Brno - Romani Pride Week
This year's celebration of International Romani Day in Brno will be held on Svoboda Square as part of Romani Pride Week. "We want to show that Romani people know how to do things, that they are a nationality with their own history, culture, language and leading figures worldwide," the Brno organizers say.
The celebrations will launch on Tuesday, 7 April in the Lužánka Municipal Park, where participants will tie ribbons on a "Tree of Tolerance" as a symbol of cohesion, energy and tolerance. At 15:00 there will be activities for children on the program for a fun afternoon in the park, designed by the organizers and volunteers.
On Wednesday, 8 April, at 12:00 there will be stands about Romani history, culture, traditions, figures, cuisine (including tastings) and a workshop on the Romani language. During the afternoon starting at 15:00 there will be performances on the podium by Romani singers, dancers, musicians, artists and a fashion show of traditional Romani clothing.
On Thursday, 9 April from 10:00 - 18:00, those interested can visit the permanent exhibition at the Museum of Romani Culture, called "The Story of the Roma", free of charge; the exhibition presents Romani history and culture from its beginnings through to contemporary times, as well as the extent of its global uniqueness. No entry after 17:00.
Romani Pride Week in Brno is being convened by these organizations: IQ Roma servis, Drom, Džas, Museum of Romani Culture, Ratolest, and the Moravian Romani Society (Společenství Romů na Moravě).
Jihlava - Romani Culture Week
In Jihlava, as is traditional, the Láčo Drom band and the Mulačágo community club will hold Romani Culture Week to celebrate International Romani Day. One of the main draws this year will also be an exhibition on the "Genocide of the Roma during the Second World War".
Two documentary films will also be screened as part of the celebrations, the Czech student film "Let's Blockade" ("Několik let") and the Slovak documentary film "All My Children" ("Všetky moje deti").
In Mimoň a two-day celebration of International Romani Day has been organized by Emilie Horáčková and the members of the local National Minority Commission. On Friday, 10 April, mass will be held at the Church of St. Peter and Paul calling for reconciliation and coexistence in love and peace between all nations and minorities.
On Saturday 11 April at 13:00 at the Sports Club there will be a public event. Together with representatives of the town of Ralsko, organizers will plant a "Tree of Good Will" and Zbyněk Andrš will give a lecture on the history of the Roma and the Romani language.
Visitors will be able to view an exhibition of photographs by Daniela Cincibusová and hear a lecture about Kali Sara of France. Irena Eliášová will present the book "The Sun Sets in the Morning" (Slunce zapadá až ráno).
International Romani Day 2015 - Nový Jičín
Prague - "Cultural Encounters"
The Prague 14 Municipal Department has prepared a program of many interesting public events for this April called "Cultural Encounters" (Setkání kultur). The campaign, which primarily celebrates the coexistence of various ethnicities and nations, is being held for the sixth year in a row, and what was originally a one-day event has grown into a month-long one.
"The aim of this campaign, in addition to familiarizing ourselves with the customs and cultural heritage of other nations, is also to support mutual tolerance between the majority society and foreign nationals living in Prague 14," explains local councilor Irena Kolmanová, who is responsible for cultural activities in Prague 14. As part of the campaign, there will be a musical evening celebrating International Romani Day on Friday, 10 April at 19:00 in the Kyje House of Culture (Kulturní dům).
Audiences will be able to hear the Romani music bands Kaminiko, Gitans, Lače manuša, and the women's choral ensemble Kaĺi Phurd. You can find the complete program listings here (in Czech).
Prague - Buči
Czech Television - program series dedicated to International Romani Day
- US Ambassador to OSCE: Roma issues are Europe's unfinished human rights business
- Hillary Rodham Clinton: International Roma Day
- Commentary: Czech media ignore International Romani Day
- ERIO and AGE: International Roma Day - It is time to improve the lives of older Roma
- ROMEA has asked Google to publish logo dedicated to International Day of Roma
- Czech President Havel protested against the wall separating non-Roma from Roma on Matiční Street 20 years ago
- Pavel Botoš: Who will stop the use of terms like "cigoši" in the Czech Republic?
- Iveta Bílková: Czech society should not tolerate words like "Cigán", "Cigoši", etc.
- Roma are most frequently targeted by hatred on the Czech Internet, experts say the law applies online too
- Czech Govt report on the state of the Romani minority estimates 830 ghettos with 127 000 inhabitants in the regions
- Slovakia: Café Európa discusses underrepresentation of Romani people in politics
- Jarmila Balážová, renowned journalist from the Romani community, joining commercial Czech online news server
- Slovak President Zuzana Čaputová has breakfast with Romani students
- VIDEO: Ostentatious homes built by Roma community in Romania reflect their desire for prestige
- Jozef Miker: Those who care about the homeless in the Czech Republic are bringing them food for free
- Slovak homeowner considers selling to Roma, so his neighbors graffiti his house and puncture his tires
- Slovakia: Dozens of children from orphanage ending up in psychiatric care - is it a business?