Centrum Bohuslava Martinů

Bohuslav Martinu is inherently linked with a small room in the tower of St. James church in Policka. It is a tiny unique and romantic place however a bit impractical to live in. The famous composer was born here on 8th December 1890. 

A family of five used to live in the tower until Bohuslav was eleven. Father Ferdinand was a shoemaker. He also watched over the tower, he had to make sure that fire did not start anywhere in the tower and he had to set the tower clock and sound the Angelus. Father had an assistant who lived with the family. They called him granddad. He helped them in the household and as the room was too small, he slept in bed under the clock in the tower.

The feel of living 36 metres above the ground made a distinct impact on the composer. He wrote In his memoir from Paris in 1934: "... I suppose that this space comes from my emotions as a child and it has a major role in my attitude toward the composition. I do not feel the small interests of people, their problems, their pain or their joy; I saw these from high above, far away. But it is the space that I constantly see and I think the one that I keep looking for in my works. Space and nature, not people..."

If you mount 192 stairs up to the church tower itself, you will pay an unforgettable visit to this room and you will experience a magnificent view of the town and its surroundings.

Bohuslava Martinů´s native room in the tower of St. James´ Church is accessible for public accompanied by a pursuivant. Sight-seeing tour includes climbing into the St. James´ Church tower with authentic interpretation. It is necessary to buy tickets in the Bohuslav Martinů´s Centre, Tylova Street.


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