- Title: Mourners gather to remember late Czech singer Karel Gott
- Date: 11th October 2019
- Summary: PEOPLE WAITING WITH FLOWERS (SOUNDBITE) (Czech) 68-YEAR-OLD PENSIONER, RICHARD VULKANOV, SAYING: "Karel was a unique man and he will be with us forever because he was great, he made huge success and he did stay popular and modest."
- Embargoed: 25th October 2019 13:10
- Keywords: Karell Gott Czech Republic Prague singer Gott celebrity Karel Gott funeral mourning tribute
- Location: PRAGUE, CZECH REPUBLIC
- City: PRAGUE, CZECH REPUBLIC
- Country: Czech Republic
- Topics: Celebrities,Arts / Culture / Entertainment
- Reuters ID: LVA003B0NL4C9
- Aspect Ratio: 16:9
- Story Text: Czechs bid a final farewell on Friday (October 11) to singer Karel Gott, standing in line for hours to pay their respects to the man whose popularity in former communist Europe earned him the nickname the "Sinatra of the East."
By mid-morning mourners of all ages - many clutching a single rose - stretched back at least two kilometres from the Zofin Palace building in Prague where Gott's flower-covered coffin lay in state.
Many mourners said that Gott had been a part of their life for decades, were fond of him and wanted to come and pay their respects.
An estimated 300,000 people were expected to pass through the Neo-Renaissance building on the Vltava River to say goodbye to the smooth-voiced singer, who shot to stardom under communism and remained popular after the 1989 Velvet Revolution.
He died on October 1 at the age of 80, after announcing in September that he was battling acute leukaemia.
Unlike many other Czech artists, Gott performed at home and abroad after the 1968 Soviet-led invasion of Czechoslovakia.
Gott was popular across eastern Europe, often singing in German, and in Russia, and also performed in the West during the communist era. He spent six months in Las Vegas in 1967 and later returned to the United States, including giving two concerts at New York's Carnegie Hall in 2000 and 2005.
A mass will be held in Prague's St. Vitus Cathedral on Saturday (October 12) for Gott, who is survived by two adult daughters from former relationships and had two children with his now widow, born in 2006 and 2008.
(Production: Jiri Skacel, Dominik Starosz)
- Copyright Holder: REUTERS
- Usage Terms/Restrictions: None