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Luděk Štefek, Radek Vopalecký

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Important events

(detail)2010 | opening


Luděk Štefek |main architect
Radek Vopalecký |main architect
(detail)Miroslav Melena |architect

A stage designer, an architect and a teacher died on August 8, 2008. He studied at the College of Pedagogy in Cyril Bouda’s and Karel Lidický’s studios and later at Theatre Faculty, Academy of Performing Arts in Prague under František Tröster. In 1967 he started working as a stage designer in Ostrava Theatre of Petr Bezruč, from 1969 he worked in Liberec Naive Theatre and later on he cooperated mainly with Prague Theatre Y. In the years 1980 to 1981 he was a head of stage design in Maribor. In 1972, at Serbian Novy Sad Triennale he was awarded a winning price for a setting designed for a play The Earl Monte Christo. Among the outstanding features of Melena’s stage designs belongs blending of scene and costumes in their almost provocative variability calling up reminiscence to surrealistic performances of the 20’s. However, next to scenography Melena gradually expressed himself more and more as a theatre designer – mostly as a head of multi-member team. Thus he gave a new resemblance to auditoriums and scenes of Brno Municipal Theatre, Prague Theatre Fidlovačka, Horácké Theatre in Jihlava, Municipal Theatre in Sokolov, Brno Reduta and lastly to Semafor Theatre. All of his stages distinguish themselves by ingenious stage design, and by dispositionally functional and smart to sight, sometimes also lively colourful appearance of the auditorium. The most salient among his projects was a solution of Prague Theatre Archa where a system of movable tables which fill the whole space enables a free open arrangement of the stage and the auditorium according to individual stage designer’s needs. As an exhibition designer Melena gave a very rich inventional shape to an exhibition of his teacher František Tröster’s life-work in 1991. Melena worked as a Head of Architecture Department at Faculty of Architecture and Arts, Technical University in Liberec. His creed of a theatre architect was expressed in an article he published in a cultural weekly magazine A2 (2007, issue 24). Here he confessed his love to Classical Theatre for its perfect solution of an audience and actor relationship, but also mutual relationship among spectators and their art experience. Melena did not agree with Baroque theatre’s introduction of stage portal which he called “absorber of theatricality”. However he did not hesitate to take over from the Baroque heritage a system of boxes or side slips. He believed their implication lead to a desired contact among the audience during the performance and to reach such goal a consistent arched tract of rows were to be used. Death caught Melena by surprise in the middle of his work on plans of a new Ostrava Theatre of Petr Bezruč, New Scene of Prague National Theatre and Brno Janacek Opera. (Jiří Hilmera)

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Uffo, a community centre for culture and leisure, opened in 2010 in Trutnov, a town in the region of Hradec Králové. Its unique building, one to offer all sorts of flexible spaces for various forms of art, received the title of Architectonic Accomplishment 2011. In a transformable theatre hall with modern technical equipment as well as in its gallery, Uffo offers open and progressive programme, providing local theatregoers with diverse cultural experiences and keeping them up to date with current trends in contemporary art. The building is highly transformable, offering many variants of space organization according to the desired purpose. The basic space variants are theatre, concert (with sitting and/or with standing area), arena, ball, and congress. Site-specific projects are then held at the transparent space of the gallery as well as in the open space around the building. The most up-to-date technical equipment and the adaptability of its space make Uffo a perfect space for modern performing arts projects.


In: http://www.czechdance.info/database/venues/uffo-trutnov/


The culture project of the Uffo Centre (Centre Uffo) in Trutnov had cost about half a billion Czech Crowns (almost €20 000 000), of which abo one hundred and eighty million Crowns (approximately €7 150 000) came from EU funding. Sadly, Melena did not live to see the opening of the centre; nevertheless, he managed to work out the concept for the disposition of the main space: besides being a classical proscenium theatre with a capacity of 360 seats, the venue can also become an “amphi­theatre” space and / or a concert, dance and con­ference hall. The hall’s maximum capacity during a pop music concert is over 700 standing persons. Melena invested the project with the system of multifunctionality and flexibility of the theatre space, the fact that was appreciated by the man­aging director of the new centre Libor Kasik: “We have at our disposal a really outstanding and inspir­ing space for organizing theatre performances, con­certs, and various social events. The dramaturgy, of course, needs to be adequate to the space. Our aim is to mediate an artistic experience for people - we want programmes on offer to be inventive, colourful, creative, open, and also surprising. A real treat.”"

In: ZDEŇKOVÁ, Marie a Josef VOMÁČKA. Miroslav Melena: scénograf a architekt. 1. vyd. V Praze: Institut umění - Divadelní ústav, 2011, 239 s. ISBN 978-807-0082-553. p. 179



Tags: Postmodern architecture, Contemporary era


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