Call for Student Essays & Performances
Submission Deadline: Monday, October 15, 2018

The 3rd University of North Texas International Festival of Czech Music, co-sponsored by the Janáček Academy of Music (Brno) and Palacký University (Olomouc), will be held on the UNT campus during the last week of November 2018.

The keynote speakers of the academic conference are expected to be Prof. Mgr. Jaroslav Miller, Rector of Palacký University and Farář Mgr. Jaroslav Křivánek of the Hussite Church, both in Olomouc, Czech Republic.  Prof. Miller will speak on the events of 1918 and the formation of Czechoslovakia; Fr. Křivánek will speak on the formation of the Czechoslovak Hussite Church.

Presentations by all speakers and performers, including those by Texas students, will be live-broadcast worldwide over the Internet.

Paper and Music Competition

As the home of the CEFT Dr. Frank J. and Hermine Hurta Kostohryz Residency in Czech Music and Culture and the Dr. Jim and Rose Bezdek Endowment Fund Celebrating Czech Music and Culture, the UNT College of Music is calling for Texas students to submit an essay on the topic of Czech music or a video (phone video OK) of their performance of a piece of music written by a Czech composer.

UNT will provide the opportunity for Texas students – one in each of the categories below – to read their papers at the academic conference on Saturday, 1 December; likewise, we will provide the opportunity for Texas students – one in each of these same categories – to perform a musical work written by a Czech composer.

Music Essay (one winner selected in each category)

Level 1:  1st – 4th grade.  Essay 2 page in length (hand-written, with optional hand-drawings on page 2) on what it means to preserve one’s ethnic culture.

Level 2:  5th – 8th grade.  Essay 4 pages in length (double-spaced, typed, 12-point font with 1-inch margins) on the life and contributions of a particular Czech classical composer.

Level 3:  9th – 12th grade.  Essay 8 pages in length (double-spaced, typed, 12-point font with 1-inch margins) on a particular piece of music written by a Czech classical composer.

Level 4:  Undergraduate College.  8 pages in length (double-spaced, typed, 12-point font with 1-inch margins) on how a particular historical event – the Battle of White Mountain in 1620, the rise of “nationalism” in the 19th century, the formation of “Czechoslovakia” in 1918, WW2, the 1968 invasion, etc. – impacted a particular Czech classical composer’s life and work.

Music Performance (one winner selected in each category)

The work may be for solo piano, for piano 4-hands, for solo instrument or voice accompanied by piano, or for small ensemble.  The work must have been written by a Czech composer.

Recognition Banquet & Opera Performance

In addition to reading their essay or performing at the conference, each winner and one parent will be guests of the university to be recognized at the festival banquet on Saturday evening and then to attend that evening’s performance of Janáček ‘s Cunning Little Vixen by the UNT opera and orchestra; additional tickets to the banquet and opera performance will be available for purchase. 

A special rate for lodging at the Denton Conference Center will be available for our out-of-town visitors.


Once received, all essays and videos will have identifying information removed before being forwarded to a panel of judges.  Judges will see only the category for each entry (e.g., 1st – 4th grade).

Deadline & Submission

Submission deadline as a scanned paper or video file, sent as an attachment, is Monday, 15 October 2018.  Winners will be notified no later than 1 November.  

Please also forward a half-page bio of the student that includes the age, city, and contact information.

For additional information and submission address, please contact Dr. Thomas Sovik at or 817-287-9644.