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Inspired in self-isolation: Josef (Pepa) Zenisek

With Covid-19 lockdowns worldwide and health authorities urging people to self-isolate and practice social distancing on a massive scale as part of an enormous effort to #FlattenTheCurve of this global pandemic … we are reaching out to industry friends, colleagues, associates, partners, etc., and asking them to share their #StayAtHome and #QuarantineAndChill activities with us during this extraordinary time.

Pepa heads up his Prague, Czech Republic-based live event Production Company SMART Production which specialises in a full range of events, from small corporates to international tours and large festivals like Colours of Ostrava – the largest in the Czech Republic. This spring and summer looked like they would be one of their busiest, with one large European tour, a brand new project with the Cirk La Putyka company and multiple other projects, including the Summer Olympic Festival park in Ostrava just a week after the Colours of Ostrava festival.

All that changed with the pandemic and the lockdown.

Robe: Where are you right now?

Pepa: Today is the first regular day back in our office in the centre of Prague after over a month and half long isolation. We are slowly returning back from home-offices as things in the Czech Republic are quickly changing to better times! Hope that it will stay this way!

Robe: How are you spending time whilst isolating / on lockdown?

Pepa: I found it actually very inspiring and enriching in both ways – personal and professional. From a personal point of view, I spent more time with my family, taking care of them and seeing much more of them – which is often very rare in our profession! And I also very much enjoyed the free time!

From the professional point of view – the whole company has been working on basic structural and operational improvements which would have otherwise been impossible at this time of the year.

Robe: What’s the most creative thing you’re able to do whilst in isolation?

Pepa: Since we – the team at SMART – have been currently working on improvements – like learning new software – for our event design studio to present visuals and ideas to clients, we have implemented new ideas to some of the existing but postponed projects. We are very excited about the results which should come up in the following months.

I am personally impressed by the number of other new activities which have come up during our online brainstorming meeting sessions!

Robe: Are you looking after anyone else during the Covid-19 crisis? Like neighbours or others in the family?

Pepa: The family, and I also signed up as a volunteer to Prague Red Cross organization to help distribute medical supplies and to help neighbours from the high-risk groups.

Robe: Has anyone particularly inspired you since this crisis started?

Pepa: Most inspiring for me is that the whole nation can stand together and fight for one thing. Also that people suddenly help each other and also are able to reconsider their own needs, which includes compliance with the restrictions.

Robe: What has been your favourite book / movie / Netflix or TV series / viral video

Games / music?

Pepa: From the isolation period, it is mainly documentaries on BBC Earth and I watched the 3rd series of Fauda.

Robe: What’s the first thing you’d like to do when we are through this crisis?

Pepa: Have a nice meet-up with all my friends, go out, have a drink. And experience any type of culture event as soon as possible. (This might be sooner rather than later as small outdoor events are already being planned as CZ moves out of lockdown … and Pepa has some plans for the next month!)

Robe: Own question / answer / message of solidarity or something you’d like to say?

Pepa: I hope that this whole situation will have an impact on people’s behaviour in a good way. That they will take care more about the most valuable priorities such as family, relationships, nature. We need to take care of our surroundings and environment as well as each other.

Inspired in self-isolation: Josef (Pepa) Zenisek