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Meet the Director: Helena Třeštíková

On November 15, at 7 pm, documentary director Helena Třeštíková will present her film LIFE WITH JESTER (Život s Kašparem) at the Embassy of the Czech Republic. The film follows the life of Jakub Špalek, a unique figure in Czech theatre. Špalek was one of the student leaders of the Velvet Revolution in 1989. Even back then, he dreamed of establishing his own theatre. It wasn’t long before the Jester theatre company was born. In connection to the screening, there will also be on display an exhibition about the Velvet Revolution. Share an evening with the director delving into her work and explore how she creates such moving films.

Life with Jester (Život s Kašparem)
The film reveals a portrait of Jakub Špalek, a unique figure in Czech theatre. The shoot began in the autumn of 1989, when Špalek was one of the student leaders of the Velvet Revolution. Even back then, he dreamed of establishing his own theatre, and it wasn’t long before the Jester theatre company was born. Over the years, however, his love for the theatre became an obsession which took its toll on his private life. Yet, without this obsession, would it have been possible to stage more than 500 performances a year, support the troupe from his own pocket, and keep its collective head above water while the subsidies petered out? This, at times, almost painfully sincere film about the need to find a balance between personal freedom, responsibility for others, artistic principles, and the desire for professional independence reflects twenty-three years in the life of someone utterly devoted to the theatre. (2013, 86 min, Czech with English subtitles)

Admission is free.

Location: Embassy of the Czech Republic
3900 Spring of Freedom Street, NW, Washington, DC 20008

RSVP: czech_events@yahoo.com | Please put "Life with Jester" in the subject line.


ABOUT THE DIRECTOR
Helena Třeštíková


Helena Třeštíková studied documentary filmmaking at the Prague Film Academy, FAMU. Since 1974, she has worked as a professional filmmaker, shooting almost fifty documentary films of various lengths on themes of interpersonal relationships and social problems. In the course of time, she specialized in the longitudinal approach, following people’s life stories on long-term basis. For a period of six years, her first series of time-lapse films followed the everyday lives of several young married couples from the moment of their wedding. For her film René (2008), she was awarded by the European Film Academy (EFA) the 2008 Prix Arte for Best Documentary Film.