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Oral history of Czech theatre

Šmíd Jan

activities Interview
Stage Director; Actor (* 1938/4/21 Vítkovice)

Jan Šmíd studied acting and later directing at the Theatre Faculty of the Academy of Performing Arts in Prague as well as psychology at the Charles University Faculty of Arts. From 1960 he was an actor at the E. F. Burian Theatre in Prague, and from 1968 a director. In 1974, he accepted an offer to work for Czechoslovak Television.

He has directed over twenty productions – not only at the E. F. Burian Theater, but also at, for example, the Lyra Pragensis Theatre – and has acted in more than thirty.

He has also performed several important film roles, the most well-known being the student Havelka in Jiří Krejčík’s 1960 film Higher Principle.

Oral history of the Czech theatre

This project was launched in 2015 and seeks to capture the memories of important figures in the field of Czech theatre in audio recordings (usually around four hours long) and, in most cases, also in a short video recording (10–20 minutes long). The recordings are followed by a report of the conversation, which offers a summary of discussed topics and personalities, after every 15-20 minutes. Photographs and personal documents (both in digital format), provided by the narrator, are also available.

The Oral History Module provides a list of figures who have recorded their memories, along with a brief profile, current photograph, and the interview protocol. Full recording, including all the additional materials, is supposed to be studied by registered researchers in the Information and Documentation Department of ATI only. Feel free to contact Lucie Čepcová: lucie.cepcova(at) if you are interested.

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