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On fresh starts in life, Karolína from Slunečná, marital crisis behind the bedroom door and the strength and fragility of women

Fast Confession – actress Denisa Nesvačilová:

Šárka Kabátová
01.Mar 2022
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10 minutes

Arranging a meeting with Denisa Nesvačilová is not easy. Currently, she is totally busy with work and her acting career is literally skyrocketing. In an interview for, she reminisced about the unexpected end of her career in modern gymnastics, how acting had crept into her life and why she’d decided to apply for study at DAMU. In addition to that, she’s also well-versed in finances. This woman has no fears and is always ready for a new challenge! She talked to us about her work experience with all kinds of adventures and didn’t forget to mention a selection of projects in which we’ll soon be able to see her dance. And she also told us how she feels in the company of women, what she likes about men and why she enjoys spending time in their company.

Denisa Nesvačilová hraje už pět let v Divadle Radka Brzobohatého.
Vždy usměvavá Denisa Nesvačilová.
Denisa Nesvačilová na premiéře filmu Srdce na dlani v kině Lucerna.
Denisa Nesvačilová na Toulcově dvoře.

You used to do modern gymnastics at one point, you wanted to become a champion, but an accident cut your career short. How did this moment in your life affect you and how did it make you feel?

It had a huge impact on me, because I was fifteen, which is quite a fragile age. I think a teenager's soul is very fragile. On top of that, my parents were in the middle of a divorce at that time. So it was one big reboot for me. At first, I took it as a huge loss and felt like my life was over, but then I started to see it as a restart and a whole new life began for me. But it took about two years for me to recover from it, both physically and mentally. Today I am glad things happened the way they did, but back then I saw it as a huge injustice that I didn’t deserve. All I was able to feel was: "Why me?!"

Where did your desire for acting come from at that moment?

It had already been creeping up on me even before then, because my parents often took me to the theatre, we watched a lot of movies and so on. But the idea as such was born later. Actually, it wasn’t until two or three years after I’d finished with gymnastics. I was trying to figure out what I could be doing, now that I suddenly had good enough health to spread my wings and fly. I was around eighteen at that time. That was when I started playing in this student theatre, where Vojta Dyk, Martin Písařík, Lenka Zahradnická and several other actors made their first steps. I already knew them, because we occasionally filmed together or met each other on stage. The future headteacher of my class scouted me there - he approached me and said, "Denisa, you should apply for DAMU." And I did.

Luxusní vila na prodej - Klánovice - 465m
Luxusní vila na prodej - Klánovice - 465m, Praha 9

You worked in the financial sphere, too. Why did you make that choice?

That’s pretty simple. Because my mom wasn’t giving me all that much pocket money - she was a single mother, so it wasn’t easy for her. I was doing various odd jobs to make some extra money. During my studies at DAMU - I was a grown-up by then - I was looking for a side gig so I could help out my mother. I needed something that wasn’t too time-consuming, because DAMU keeps you busy from 7 AM to 7 PM, every day, weekends and holidays included. Nobody cares whether or not it’s a free day, it's pretty much the same as what happens when you start doing it professionally. So I was looking for something time-flexible. And I found it at my mom’s workplace, so my mom became my boss. I actually focused on closing deals with the clients. I could set up the appointments according to my schedule. So I often worked in the evenings, on weekends, or during lunch breaks, when I would run off to a nearby café and quickly return to school. I was doing it for about three or four years.

You starred in one of the highest-rated TV shows, Slunečná. What is the difference between acting in an "endless" series compared to short-term projects or a film?

The first difference is that, as a character, you don't know where you're headed. Before Slunečná, I mainly worked on movies or shorter series, so I always knew in advance how my characters would develop; I had a clear idea about their arc. That’s much easier to work with than when you start playing a character and have no idea where they’ll be in a year’s time. The information I got in Slunečná was that I would only be there for three or four months, after which my character would go back to Ireland. But because the character of Karolína ended up being well-received not only by the other characters, but also by the audience, she remained on the show. After that, I had no more guidelines to follow. In such a case, you just play it by ear. I tried to build the character based on what I already knew about her. That she was a girl from an orphanage, what was her first escapade that people got to see and how it changed her. But I could only guess where she might be heading, because I had no idea if she wouldn’t turn out to be a murderess. With these shows, you never know. So I decided to portray her in a way that everything she does seems believable. On the other hand, it gave me enormous freedom. Because in addition to the storyline that the screenwriters wrote for me, I was always looking for occasions when, for example, she could appear a little mean, or on the contrary, show huge humanity that went beyond that arc, while keeping it believable. In the end, I probably managed to create a pretty colourful character, because the audience enjoyed her and I think they still do. And I enjoyed her too. According to what the viewers write, they understood all the character "flips" that she pulled. But I have to admit that I'm more comfortable with jobs that are more focused. Meaning I prefer to know in advance how the character will end up. Now I'm looking forward to working on projects where the story is closed and I can just add little bits and pieces here and there.

What did Slunečná bring into your life? Was it an entirely positive experience, or were there things you wouldn't want to go through again?

It definitely brought me a lot of positive things and also a lot of new viewers who root for me. They started a fan page and show great interest in what I like or dislike. In theatre, I get presents from them that are quite personal, which is really nice. And I have Slunečná to thank for that. Thanks to the series, I am much more well-known in this field of work than I was before, which is another benefit. But I really could do without all the hate posts that I was getting in the beginning. I've talked about them a million times already, because it made me feel very uncomfortable. I’ve received all kinds of threats, and I wouldn't want to experience that ever again. I hope it won’t happen to me in the future. At the same time, I know that there will soon be something on TV where I'm not playing a completely likeable character, so I'm a bit worried. But the audience knows me a bit better now and they’re aware that I'm different from the characters I play. So maybe it will be okay.

You’re often cast in the roles of women who have strong life energy and are in a way unique. How do you enjoy portraying them and are these types of women close to your own character?

I really enjoy portraying them, because there’s a lot to play. I've played enough of those dull and bland girls before, and there's not much to go on off. So I love playing strong women, women who have complicated lives or character flaws, I get a kick out of it. And if we’re similar? Maybe in terms of life energy. Maybe that’s why those roles keep coming to me, because the directors and screenwriters can see that huge and strong energy in me, which is nice. And thanks to that, it’s easy for me to play. But I really hope I’m not at all similar to Karolína from Slunečná or the girl I’ve recently played in Midnight Confession, God forbid! I don't think I'm that volatile in my relationships and I’m definitely much less of a psychopath. But I do understand the question. We are a bit similar in terms of our energy and almost like a masculine strength.

Didn’t you once say that you’re a guy inside? Do you feel more comfortable in the company of men than among women?

Hundred percent, yes. To put things straight, I do like some women and there are a couple of them in my life whom I consider true friends. I trust them and I can always count on them. Honestly, though, they are few and far between. Men, though? That’s my pack. I feel comfortable and safe with them. It might be because I enjoy a harsh kind of humour and I'm not much of a princess. Now that I’m in my thirties, I'm growing a little softer, my friends often point that out. But I feel I might actually be growing softer because I have an army of amazingly strong men around me, who probably know me well by now. I can afford to be feminine and I feel safe in their company. I get on really well with guys. I mean, it’s not like I watch football with them, I hate sports, but we play together on the PlayStation network, and when I go out for a beer, it’s always with a bunch of guys. I also tend to go on trips exclusively with male friends. I'm such a tomboy.

Do make the impression of a completely independent person, isn't that a bit of a problem in dating?

I don't know. I guess we’d have to ask people who are or have been trying to meet someone new. But I suppose it might be. Guys might consider it a little dangerous. Not only what I do, but also the fact that I’m very self-sufficient. I have always been good at taking care of myself and I hope to continue to do so. I can drill a hole in the wall, hang up a shelf and assemble a lot of things. I guess I'm a threat because of that. But I don't think it’s all about independence, it’s mostly my job’s fault. For them, I believe, the most dangerous thing is that I’m always surrounded by a lot of interesting and more or less well-known men. When a guy has no idea what my job entails, he often sees this as a huge problem. I've experienced it countless times. Since he’s not familiar with this situation, he has a lot of prejudices that often stem mostly from his lack of self-confidence. So I think the biggest issue really is my job, not my independence. Even if I were a helpless little thing working in the film industry, they’d still consider me elusive or too much to handle, because they just can't deal with it. So, gentlemen, gain some confidence, be happy with yourselves and forget about jealousy.

Do you have any new offers where you’ll be playing a completely different type of female character? Or is there any other project waiting for you?

Hey, you know I’m often not allowed to discuss those things! I’ve made a series called Midnight Confession that will be broadcasted on TV Prima later this year. I think that my role there is completely unlike anything that the audience has seen me play so far. Or maybe once. I don't think any of my characters have ever been so dramatic, so people will probably be surprised. I myself am curious to see how I pulled it off. I'm totally different there and I'm happy about it. This year I will be shooting a very nice series. At least I hope it’s going to be nice, so far it definitely looks that way. Since, once again, I can't talk about it yet, I'll just say that it will be about love and it takes place in a very nice environment. It’s definitely going to be pleasing for the eye and I am really looking forward to it. And I also have a specific project lined up, you got it right! I can't talk about it either, but thanks to it I will try something I have never tried before and I will completely step out of my comfort zone. I’m terrified of it and it's drawing closer and closer. I am already in the preparation phase and it’s going to be crazy. Once I’m allowed to speak about it freely, everyone will understand why I'm so scared and losing sleep.

And what about theatre? Where can people see you these days?

I have been playing at the Radek Brzobohatý Theater for about five years now, where I had one closing night a few days ago and another awaits me in February. But people can still see me there in three plays. At the end of February, we have an opening night at the Metro Theater, which has recently been renovated. There, I play in the comedy “I've had enough of you”, and I’d like to cordially invite everyone to come and see it. It's about the kind of marital crisis that knocks on the bedroom door in almost every marriage sooner or later. My role is that of a free-spirited neighbour, who holds a mirror up to the married couple who’s facing this problem. The couple is portrayed by Saša Rašilov and Lída Rašilovová. And I with either Martin Písařík or Martin Kraus are the neighbours who, on the contrary, have no troubles at all. So, in a way, we are a source of inspiration for them. It's super funny, really, do come! And then I have more theatre rehearsals starting in the summer, but I’m not going to give you the details just yet either. I can only tell you that it will be another Prague theatre and, once again, I’ll get to try out something I have never done before.

You love dancing and it's a passion of yours. Will you have a chance to realize yourself in this field as well?

Yes, thoroughly, but unfortunately I can't tell you much about it. But I will say that I am taking dancing lessons and it’s for a good reason.

I know that your heart has always been in the right place. Are you involved in some charity or another kind of help?

Yes, I am. A lot of people know that about me, and those who don't will find out now. Thank you for this question. For several years now, I have been working closely with the Endowment Fund for Premature Babies and Their Families, because I know its founders very well. Whenever possible, I would help them out. This year I became an ambassador of the Helping dolls event. It is a beautiful event, where an auction is held of Barbie dolls dressed by various fashion designers, some of whom are very famous. The proceeds always go to a specific case from Klokánek (trans. note.: “Kangaroo” - Children’s Emergency Fund). I’m proud to be an ambassador this year and I'm really looking forward to it. I've already seen some of the dolls before and they look awesome. I really love the event. I know that dolls are always auctioned off for quite a nice sum of money. So I'm excited about it and I hope that everyone with their heart in the right place will participate in the auction. It will take place in May.

Thank you for the interview full of secrets, we’ll be looking forward to all of your surprises.

I’d like to thank you for the interview as well, and I have a final message for the readers: have a great year, take care of your health and most importantly: go to the theatre.

Fast confession:

The most important moment of your life and how did it change you?

The end of my career in gymnastics and to have me a pus towards acting.

What exactly does the saying "knowing how to live" mean to you?

Well?! Making the most of each day and always giving everything a shot rather than having regrets later.

Is there anything you’re worried about in the Czech Republic and would you like to change it?

Currently, I'm worried about the state of culture. And I'd like to change it, but I don't think I can. But I’d like to see people going to theatre performances, concerts and so on again…

Should a woman be able to deal with everything on her own or are there areas where a man’s help might be useful?

She should be able to deal with everything on her own, but she should also be able to pretend to be a damsel in distress that needs a man’s advice and help. Because otherwise, men feel like we don't need them.

What can always give you an energy boost and push you on the right path in life?

Jesus! Love! Always love!

Are you excited about the new government or do you have some reservations?

I rather have reservations about how the handover took place and I think we need to give it a little time now. They are currently struggling with what was left behind by the previous government and their efforts are being undermined. So I think we need to hold on, wait it out and not try to make opinions on everything right away. I have trust in them.

What’s something nobody knows about you?

I'd say that I drink peppermint liquor, but I'm sure I’ve said that before, so there are people who know. But what’s something that no one knows about me?! That I don't have a dishwasher at home.

What do you dislike about today's society, and on the contrary, what do you admire about it?

I don't like the consumer and non-ecological approach people have - even I do sometimes! On the contrary, I like that there are a lot of people who are inventive in this field and try to enlighten others.

Three principles that you believe in and stick to?

Don't lie to yourself. Also, don’t rush things, but I don't stick to that, I often rush everything. And I want to work on my kindness and patience. What else? Of course, no killing and stealing, but I’d hope that’s something everyone believes in!

If you had the chance to do-over something in your life, what would it be?

I have a few things I’d like to do-over, but I'll keep them to myself.

Is there anything you invest money in for a better future?

I bought a language course recently… or like a year ago, but I haven't opened it yet. But yes, I invest in languages ​​and I also try to invest in experiences, because they're what I draw the most energy for my soul from.

What do you value most about men and what do you find the most annoying about them?

I love when they act like gentlemen and I find it annoying when they’re completely dumb.

Are you into cryptocurrencies and what role do you think they’ll play in the future?

I’m not into cryptocurrencies, but I should be. I can see they’re a great future investment, especially for the younger generation. I think it will be very problematic for everyone to buy their own housing, due to how expensive and complicated everything is.

Which living person do you admire so much that you’d like to see them on the presidential post?

Honestly, I admire a lot of living people, but I wouldn’t like to wreck their lives by making them a president. Can I pick anyone I want? Alright. For example the young Prince Lobkowicz, he’d be a good fit.

How has pole dance changed your life?

It turned my life upside down! It gave me a completely different direction and taught me resilience.
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