Havel to the Café!
On Wednesday, November 17th at 1pm, a special procession departed from the statue of the first president of Czechoslovakia, Tomas Garrique Masaryk, in front of Prague Castle, arriving eventually at Cafe Slavia. The procession carried a bronze bust of Vaclav Havel – the first for Prague – by sculptor Maria Seborova to be put on permanent display at Cafe Slavia.
The procession stopped at the Vaclav Havel Bench at Maltezske Square and the Theatre on the Balustrade. Havel’s texts in Czech and English were read; actors of Havel’s home theater prepared a special program including songs from the performance Velvet Havel, a special sticking of Havel’s mustache, and a look inside the ‘president’s box’; Havel’s Volkswagen Golf took part in the celebrations and assisted with the transportation of the bust when it was not carried at the back of the public.
The program at Café Slavia was opened by Prague Hlahol Choir and a short excerpt of Havel’s text presented by Czech actress Ana Geislerova. Representatives of the organizing institutions Art for Amnesty, Amnesty International Czech Republic, Vaclav Havel Library and Vaclav Havel Library Foundation greeted the audience. Special guests – Milos Vystrcil, President of the Senate, Jennifer Bachus, Chargé d’affairs of the United States, Ingeborg Radok Zadna, Rector of the Academy of Performing arts, and finally, Vaclav Havel’s wife, actress Dagmar Havlova – commented on the anniversary of the Velvet Revolution and how important it is to care about Havel’s legacy both in the Czech Republic and internationally. The Irish musician Glen Hansard closed out the program with the Czech-English version of the famous song by Czech songwriter Jaroslav Hutka, Havlicku, Havle.