Centenary of musician Jiří Šlitr, co-founder of ground-breaking Semafor theatre

Photo: APF Czech Radio

February 15 marks the centenary of the birth of the multi-talented Jiří Šlitr. With stage partner Jiri Suchý, Šlitr was a driving force in Prague’s ground-breaking Semafor theatre in the 1960s – but tragically died while still in his 40s.

Jiří Šlitr is best known for his work as a musician but, a man of many talents, was also a trained lawyer and skilled artist.

Born on February 15, 1924, Šlitr started out with a group from his hometown of Rychnov that were eventually named the Czechoslovak Dixieland Jazz Band. After that he was a touring pianist with the theatre company of popular actor Miroslav Horníček.

It was Horníček who in 1957 introduced him to somebody with whom Šlitr would forever be associated, Jiri Suchý.

Suchý, who is today 92, remembers the day Horníček brought them together.

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Author: Ian Willoughby, Source:Český rozhlas