Jiří Novák

* 1931

  • "Marek emigrated to France in 1983, where he graduated from the Faculty of Arts. In 1987 he began working for Pavel Tigrid's magazine Testimony (Temoignage). He was with him for two years and simultaneously with the publishing of the magazine he was learning about our political scene. He established contacts with our underground organization, and in 1989 after the Velvet Revolution he returned. Since he knew French perfectly, together with several other languages, he became our ambassador to France. Then he returned, he spent four years here. That's the life of ambassadors, they are out for four years and then they are here for four years. Then he went to Vietnam for for years, because it had been the French territory. He spent four years in Hanoi, then returned and then went to Lebanon to Beirut. He was there for four years, then he returned and went to the United States as a general consul in Chicago. Now he has been in the Czech Republic for a year and a half and he is employed at the Ministry of Foreign Affairs as teh head of the economic section and in two years he should go abroad again as an ambassador."

  • "The credit for creating the scene for jazz goes to teacher Vladimír Trsek, nicknamed Pulp, who gathered musicians around him and began playing traditional jazz, dixieland, and jazz from New Orleans. It was shortly after the war. Trsek was one of the founding members of the Slaný Jazz Club, and I, being an economist, joined too. Slaný Jazz Club was founded in 1962. Other members were these people from Slaný: Tomáš Hanuš and Jiří Růžička. Jiří Plašil was the founder of the Slaný Jazz Days (SJD) in 1968. In 2011 we organized the 45th year of SJD with unbroken continuity, which was very interesting. You could say it is very rare in today's world. It began in 1968, and twice there were even two events in the same year."

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    Vlastivědné muzeum ve Slaném, 07.11.2011

    duration: 08:39
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We did not play chastushka songs, we played American jazz

2635-portrait_former.jpg (historic)
Jiří Novák
photo: Ze soukromé sbírky Jiřího Nováka

Jiří Novák was born in Slaný on the 21st June 1931 in the family of a tradesman. He graduated from business and technical school. After graduation he started to work in CKD Slaný as an economist, and he eventually retired from this position. In the 1950s he was transferred into production for political reasons, where he had to do manual work for two years. From his youth he had been interested in music. In 1962 he became one of the founders of Slaný Jazz Club. Until 1995 he headed the organizing committee Slaný Jazz Days. He married Jaroslava Skolilová and thus became the adoptive father of Marek Skolil, an influential post-1989 diplomat. He is now retired and lives in Prague.