Smoček, Ladislav

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Ladislav Smoček *24. 8. 1932

Director and playwright, one of the most original personalities in the Czech theatre contemporary. He trained as director at the Drama Faculty of the Academy of Performing Arts (DAMU) in Prague in 1952–1956. In 1965, together with Jaroslav Vostrý, he co-founded the Drama Club (Činoherní klub) in Prague. It opened with Smoček’s play, The Picnic and Drama  Club is linked to Mr Smoček’s theatre career to this very day, although in the meantime he would work in many theatres both in the Czech Republic and abroad (mainly Switzerland, but also in Finland and Italy). Until the end of the ‘sixties he was Činoherní Klub’s main household author. He also directed there, staging mainly his own plays. Mr Smoček was always interested in a seemingly ordinary, „petty“ characters confronted and contrasted with the nature. Under the pressure of a situation creating immediate danger these inconspicuous, inoffensive people reveal their biological roots, reacting to the outside world with unexpected wild aggressiveness stemming from real or imaginary fears. Smoček’s play Dr Zvonek Burke’s Extraordinary Afternoon was one of the most successful plays both of the ‘sixties and of the whole Czech post-war drama writing. It is also one of the most translated of all Czech plays. In 2004, Mr Smoček was awarded the Karel Čapek for his literary works, especially drama.

List of plays (selection):

  • Piknik, 1963, première 27. 2. 1965 Činoherní klub, Prague 
  • Podivné odpoledne Dr. Zvonka Burkeho, 1965, première 9. 3. 1966 Činoherní klub, Prague 
  • Bludiště, 1965, première 9. 3. 1966 Činoherní klub, Prague 
  • Bitva na kopci, 1967, première 29. 5. 1987 Činoherní klub, Prague 
  • Kosmické jaro, 1969, première 15. 3. 1970 Činoherní klub, Prague 
  • Jednou k ránu, 1971, première 16. 3. 2000 Činoherní klub, Prague 
  • Smyčka, 1972, première 26. 9. 1990 Činoherní klub, Prague 
  • Nejlepší den, 1995, première 7. 5. 1995 Divadlo J.K. Tyla, Pilsen

Translated plays:

  • Podivné odpoledne Dr. Zvonka Burkeho Strannyj den‘ doktora Zvoneka Burke - Russian
  • Podivné odpoledne Dr. Zvonka Burkeho - Dr. Zvonek Burkes seltsamer Nachmittag - German
  • Podivné odpoledne Dr. Zvonka Burkeho - Lo strano pomeriggio del dottor Zvonek Burke – Italian
  • Podivné odpoledne Dr. Zvonka Burkeho - La extrana tarde del doctor Zvonek Burke - Spanish
  • Bludiště – Irrgarten - German
  • Bludiště - The Maze - English
  • Jednou k ránu –Egyszer reggel felé - Hungarian
  • Smyčka The Noose - English
  • Bitva na kopci - The Battle on the Hill - English