Where to hear live music in Prague
Czech jazz stars from George Mraz to Rudy Linka have wowed international audiences for years, but catching the hot improvs in a stone-walled Prague cellar bar is an experience unmatched for intimacy and congeniality.
Buy the trumpeter a Pilsner at AghaRTA in Old Town or chat up a bass player at the nearby U Staré paní and you’ll join the same art mafia and Prague nightlife movement that helped bring down the old regime (admittedly with the help of a few rockers and writer types). The latter live music club runs a year-round jazz fest that brings in the likes of John Scofield and Stanley Clarke, but the local artists you’ll catch at the club may well be sharing the stage when the majors come through.
Jazz rules as ever at U Malého Glena as well, here you’ll be packed into a one-room jam you’ll never forget. But don’t overlook the other major festivals when planning your trip. The headliners sometimes drop in at the storied Lucerna Music Bar (where the Duke once played) and sometimes even the rarefied halls of the grandiloquent Rudolfinum concert hall, which once served as the parliament building, especially during the Strings of Autumn concerts.
If it’s Prague’s world-renowned rep for classical genius that inspires, consider a Prague Symphony Orchestra performance at Municipal House or a National Theatre opera such as the quintessentially Bohemian Libuše. The city’s best line-up of world music acts, meanwhile, take to the Akropolis club stage in Žižkov.