Stopka's Pilsner Pub
Prior to 1918, Česká street was called Rudolfsgasse and with its many cafés and pubs served as a promenade for Brno's Czech inhabitants. From those which Janáček frequented, today we can visit the Stopka's Pilsner Pub, which used to be a favourite place for Czech social and cultural life. What was originally Jonák's Pilsner Pub was taken over in 1910 by the landlord Jaroslav Stopka. The Art Nouveau frescoes on the facade of the building were designed by the painter Ladislav Novák, who also designed the front cover to the piano score for Janáček's opera The Excursions of Mr Brouček. The pub used to house a painting by Antonín Kalvoda [?] called "At Stopka's Pub", which depicted local society including Leoš Janáček, the conductor Břetislav Bakala and the writers Jiří Mahen and Alois Mrštík.
The same building on Rudolfská (Česká) street 5 was also the headquarters of the Moravian Chamber of Lawyers, one of whose members was František Pauk, Leoš Janáček's representative in the dispute with the Cooperative of the National Theatre in Prague over the performance of the opera Fate at the Vinohrady Theatre.
You have given me such a wonderful surprise that I do not know how to thank you. It's as though Brouček has come alive in front of my very eyes, his landlady - I just have her like Kedruta in the 15th century - so fitting! Etherea with the flower hat - and Málinka - with a money box! It's a masterly piece of work that you've achieved. And not just the title page - I think that it would make a wonderful theatre poster! In the meantime I thank you with all my heart. In one page you have captured the tone which I searched for in 300-400 pages of a piano score.
From a letter from Leoš Janáček to the painter Ladislav Novák (23. 5. 1919)