ABOUT UNDERSTANDING AND MISUNDERSTANDING OF THE 2ND FESTIVAL OF DRAMA AND THEATER OF THE BALKAN CULTURAL SPACE “THEATER AT THE CROSSROADS”
(Contribution to theater history)
For a second year in a row, the National Theater in Nis is organizing a festival of drama and theater of the Balkan cultural space, of a competitive character, called “Theater at the Crossroads”. The festival is being held in Nis, from 11 to 19 March 2020.
Numerous misunderstandings followed the organization and selection of the second “Theater at the Crossroads”. It is for this reason that I think it is necessary, before I review the selection itself, to point out those understandings and misunderstandings.
Let us start with the founding and the concept of the Festival.
Festival “Theater at the crossroads” was initiated by the mayor of Nis, Mr. Darko Bulatovic, on September 19, 2018. More precisely, at our first meeting, after my election as director of the National Theater in Nis, Mr. Bulatovic uttered the sentence that Nis lacked a theater festival.
A number of extraordinarily important festivals are organized in Nis: Nisville, Film Encounters, NIMUS, Choir Festival, the Literary and Fine Arts Colony “Sicevo”, Evergreen, the International Student Festival of Folklore, etc. There is no theater festival. Nine years ago, “GlumBal” was organized, but unfortunately it did not come to life.
It is easy to imagine how fortunate I was to hear this sentence from a mayor and a politician, at a time when we are reapeating, almost in a choirly manner, that insufficient attention is being paid to culture, and especially theater. I would like to point out that the City of Nis allocates 9% of its budget for culture.
The National Theater in Nis, being a City institution, immediately began planning and managing the Festival, with the full support of the general public in Nis as well as in Serbia and the region.
We immediately asked friends and colleagues to help us. We belive that we should learn from the best and look up to them. Thus, tips and / or founding acts were given to us by Sterijino pozorje, Bitef, Yugoslav Theater Festival “Without Translation”, “Theater Spring”, Festival of Small Theater Forms, Fringe Theater Adventures from Edmonton, Canada, etc. In its full formal capacity, the Festival came to life with the formation of the Program Council: President – Nebojsa Bradic, Director, Belgrade; members – Aleksandar Milosavljevic, theater critic, Novi Sad; prof. Darko Lukic, PhD, theatrologist, Zagreb; Dejan Lilic, Drama Headliner, Skopje; Dejan Petkovic, MA, theatrologist, Nis; Dejan Stojiljkovic, writer, Nis, and director of the National Theater in Nis, who is also the director and co-selector of the Festival. Each of them made an invaluable contribution to creating the concept of the Festival. Nonetheless, conversations were held with prof. Vida Ognjenovic, prof. Valentin Vencel, prof. Ivan Medenica, prof. Dusko Ljustina, prof. Nenad Novakovic, Branislav Nedic, Nemanja Rankovic, Vladimir Djuricic, who contributed with their suggestions for the Festival to receive its first outlines.
It is important to emphasize that, with the consent of the founder, there is no one outside the theatrical arts profession in the Festival Council. There is not even anyone from the Board of Directors of the National Theater in Nis, although it is made up of extraordinary theater connoisseurs and more than professionally accomplished people.
At the first festival, the mayor addressed the guests at the theater foyer on behalf of the founder, and the festival was opened on stage by Mrs. Mima Kuric, eminent theater actress and a doyen of Serbian and Yugoslav theater, former headliner of the National Theater in Nis now retired. Exactly for the reason that theater retains its autonomy. This will continue to be the case.
“Theater at the Crossroads” aims to promote the Balkan cultural space, the country of Serbia and the city of Nis as a crossroads of European and world routes and to enhance international cultural exchange, promote theater art and theater creators, exchange ideas and theatrical practices and is dedicated to the challenges and perspectives of contemporary theater . By invitation (a call for entries) and based on selection theaters from Serbia, Turkey, Greece, Northern Macedonia, Bulgaria, Romania, Hungary, Albania, Montenegro, Italy, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Croatia and Slovenia are invited to participate at the Festival. The maximum number of competitive performances is 8. The festival is held every year from 11 to 19 March. The opening ceremony of the Festival is on March 11th, on the Day of the National Theater in Nis, when the premiere performance of the Theater outside the competition program is performed. The festival, like most others, has a competitive and accompanying program. It has its own jury, critics, theatrologists, guests, friends, media support, etc. And above and beyond everything, it has its audience.
The festival is financed primarily from the budget of the city of Nis. In addition, the festival and theater productions can be supported by all other institutions, businesses, organizations, individuals, etc. Provided they are not in conflict with the law, of course.
The program and budget of both festivals, as well as the program and budget of the National Theater in Nis for 2019 and 2020, were unanimously adopted by the City of Nis Assembly. Both by the government and by the opposition.
The first festival was held, in addition to the founder’s funds, with the financial and all other support of the Ministry of Culture and Information of the Republic of Serbia, represented then and now by Mr. Vladan Vukosavljevic, and a number of friends of the Theater. All information can be found on the website of the National Theater in Nis.
Patron of the 2nd “Theater at the Crossroads” is the President of the Republic of Serbia, therefore, the institution of the President, currently represented by Mr. Aleksandar Vucic. Patronage, according to the president’s official website, is protocol in nature and is an expression of understanding of the importance of an event for the benefit of the wider community. Therefore, the President of the Republic of Serbia does not allocate any money, he has no right under the Constitution.
I take this opportunity to once again thank the President of the Republic of Serbia for recognizing the “Theater at the Crossroads” as a festival that provides such an opportunity. I use this moment to thank everyone else I mention, either individually or collectively, for their support of the Festival and the National Theater in Nis. I am no less grateful to those who criticized the Festival and the Theater. “Theater at the Crossroads” is a young festival, a toddler among theater festivals of Serbia and the region, therefore any suggestions on how to improve and words of advice are more than welcome. Especially if those suggestions come from people who have dedicated their lives to theater.
Why did I as the initiator and founder of the Festival on behalf of the National Theater in Nis address the President of the Republic of Serbia? Because I live and work in Serbia and it is logical for me to address the President of the country where I reside. Because I care that the theater and festival I currently lead have the broadest support. Hence the unrequited support of the embassies of all these countries of the “Balkan cultural space” in connecting the theaters and countires through the Festival. Hence the support of the embassies of Canada, Portugal, Poland, Russia, Japan, China, as well as the American Corner, the French Cultural Center, the Bulgarian Consulate in Nis for the performances we produced in the previous period, the guest performances of the National Theater in Nis abroad, and for theaters guest performing in Nis. Hence the numerous friendships the National Theater in Nis enjoys.
It is of great importance for the development of the culture of a country, including the country of Serbia, that the country and the highest state officials at the institutional rather than daily political level recognize and support the culture and cultural events. I sincerely hope that the 3rd and 303rd “Theater at the Crossroads” will be held under the patronage of the President of the Republic of Serbia.
The doors of the National Theater in Nis and the “Theater at the Crossroads” festival are open to all ideas that contribute to connecting diversity, encourage reflection on respect for others, promote positive values and label the shortcomings of modern society, debate with the past and present, in order to create a better future and lasting values of importance for our community and region.
We are not dealing with daily politics. Neither I, nor anyone at the National Theater in Nis stands at the door and checks who votes for whom, whether and why one votes, whether or not he or she is a member of something, where he or she came from, why he or she came, how long he or she is staying, where he or she will go, etc. Every associate and guest of the National Theater in Nis and the “Theater at the Crossroads” festival has been invited for the purest artistic reasons, without any restriction and without any interference. I am deeply convinced that political theater exists only within the limits of theatrical effect. Everything else is the theatricalization of society. As an institution that influences the society, the National Theater in Nis addresses it through its repertoire. As long as no one is preventing us in this, the government and the opposition, censorship and self-censorship, I believe that theater has its own autonomy.
Of course, malicious or not, anyone can load daily politics in every public appearance, if that is his or her area of interest.
From the moment when the National Theater in Nis officially announced that the patron of the 2nd “Theater at the Crossroads” is the President of the Republic of Serbia, on October 17, 2019, dissonant voices begin to be heard and the Festival is draged into daily political urging. The new situation led to the first two colleagues pulling out from the agreed-upon projects in the official repertoire of the National Theater in Nis, one of which was to open the Festival. Respecting their decisions, although not rationally understanding them, other productions were planned in their place with different directors and their creative teams. Furthermore, the daily political animosity and the passionate cheering „for“ and „against“ led to the events surrounding the “Theater at the Crossroads” being interpreted from the perspective of politicization by some people. Reasonable voices and logical explanations, in such situations, as usual, do not want to be heard.
From the original selection three theaters are not coming to this year’s Festival, each for their own reasons: The “Csiky Gergely” Hungarian State Theatre in Timișoara on the grounds that they have such contract with the director where he decides at which festival they may appear; The Croatian National Theater in Zagreb made it clear that they have been prevented because of their obligations; co-production of the Belgrade Drama Theater and Ulysses theatre due to scheduled filming of the lead actor. Everything is on the website of the National Theater in Nis. As always in such instances of theatrical life, other theaters and performances have been invited, which have been apostrophed in the co-selection report.
The Program Council and the co-selection team did their best to find the best possible solution in the situation of unexpected and unpleasant events around the Festival. Conceptual disagreements in new circumstances have resulted with the Council, not being able to continue to work in its existing form.
For a moment, all these events disturbed the normal preparation of the second “Theater at the Crossroads”, of course. But, as Mr. Darko Lukic pointed out, “every festival has the right to change its program, idea and concept. Each administration is entitled to its own decisions and the consequences of those decisions. ”
The City of Nis and the National Theater in Nis certainly did not give up on the idea and concept of the Festival.
Welcome to the 2nd “Theater at the Crossroads”.
Spasoje Z. Milovanovic, MA theatrologist
Director of the National Theater in Nis and Director of the Festival
Mayor of the City of Nis
The rich tradition of renowned cultural events, such as Nisville, Film Encounters, NIMUS, Evergreen, the Literary and Fine Arts Colony “Sicevo” and others – is the golden crown of Imperial Nis.
All these years, the pedestal lacked one festival in order to complete the image of Nis as the cultural and artistic center of southeastern Serbia. It was a festival of theater and dramatic art.
This year we can say with particular joy that for the second time in a rowNis is organizing the festival of drama and theater of the Balkan cultural space, Theater at the Crossroads.
Theater at the Crossroadsrepresents the expression of the desire to create a festival of dramatic art in Nis, a city where all important European and world travel routes intersect, a city where the East and the West meet in a stormy and creative way, bringing together and uniting theaters from the whole Balkan cultural area. Theater at the Crossroadsdoes not represent a physically restricted space; it does not incarnate a single venue or a single building … Theater at the Crossroads is a huge house at the intersection where all the cultural identities of the Balkansmeet and interpenetrate each other, enriching and developing themselves.
As such, Theater is the reflectionof contemporary Nis as a developed and culturally conscious metropolis that through art and beauty promotes peace, equality and coequality in the richness of diversity. Today, Nis is a city that shows howthrough the dialogue of domestic cultural potential with other European cultural and artistic identities,it contributes to the preservation of its culture, but also encourages international cultural exchanges.
To all lovers of quality theater art, I most cordially welcome you to the city on the banks of the Nisava!
„Our life, human life is like a flower in a field. The goat comes, abrades – no flower left…”
Chekhov wrote many years ago, and I often remember it when misery, hatred or anger begin to take over me … these feelings rule people more and more, all over the world, but why? I don’t know the answer and I don’t know if I’ll ever get one. I just know, I’m certain, that the answer and the solution lie deep within each of us. It is that spark of humanity, the spark of truth and primordial warmth, a piece of heaven all of us have, just need to wake it up, turn it into reality and into art. Running away from it is easier, the darker side is always more attractive. And it carries the “easiness of life”, but…. in the end, there is nothing more beautiful than overcoming temptations, repenting, admitting mistakes, first of all to yourself and then to others, shedding a tear, shouting out loud…
And theatre enables us do it and provide sit to us. To us who create in it and also to those who enjoy in it. We hide behind the characters, traits, behind ideas and concepts, behind makeup and costumes, behind the curtain and in front of it… hidden we convey the truth, emotions, soul easier… but it is better to convey it hiding than to run from ourselves, from reality, from the people around us…
Theater can start a revolution, in us, on the street, in the sky. Make us better people, forgive ourselves and others. Bury our vanities and egos. Recognize who we are and what we are. Finally move us forward.
Because it’s better to lie, cheat, rape, kill on stage than out on the street. I will be happy that all the evil, all the hatred, all the anger from the street are transferred to the stage, and that nobility, the culture, honest laughter and thought, all the happiness and joy from the stage show up on the street. If the whole theater were a great mirror of the human soul, reflecting what we carry inside, maybe one day we would shake our heads and give up our struggle for power, we would stop fighting for personal interests, for vain notes, for material wealth and we would remember that we are, after all humans, living beings, small, short-lived, and irrelevant in relation to time, history and this planet. Because when each one of us leaves this world, at our funeral songs, everybody knows then that everything is vanity, that every “title”, all “wealth” accumulated in one way or another disappears in the dust of ashes…
We are not eternal, there is no such alchemy that will make us eternal, even though we “play” Gods, we should be aware of our smallness. Opposite from us, theater is eternal … And will be eternal. We will not be here, but it will survive … And so it should be.
And after years, decades, and given God’s will centuries, the “Theater at the Crossroads” will be a witness of everything and everyone, a witness of various souls, bodies, performances, words, sentences, feelings and thoughts. Ready to teach us, educate us, guide us, and to show… it is up to us who are coming in the future, whether we will know how to read the codes and records…
May our Festival be eternal…
There is this old Latin expression that, on a case-to-case basis, translates in various ways. Discrimen, therefore, etymologically, can mean a line where two structures become one, but also a line separating and dividing the two bodies. Discrimen also means a dividing line, a turning point… A crossroads. For Flavius Valerie Constantine, the most famous Nishlian in the history of our city, as well as one of the most important rulers and reformers in the history of civilization, this was probably the moment when he saw a cross in the sky appear before the decisive battle at the Milvian Bridge near Rome. The rest, they say, is history. And a bit of a legend. Because one cannot do without the other.
I remember very clearly the premiere of the play „Constantine” at the National Theater in Nis, which happened exactly on the birthday of our great compatriot, in 2013, the jubilee year. There were all sorts of things. Media lynch, bomb report, boycott by the now-defunct local board of a minivan – party, the wife of the then actual president in the first row, photo reporters squeezing around her and not caring about actors on stage, our most renowned actor Brik Krivokapic stretching on a huge staircase symbolizing the ascent to Paradise because, as the slogan of the play used to say: “The sky is not conquered by fire and sword. Sky is conquered by virtue. “
The chest armor and cloaks of Roman generals of blood color, senatorial rigors, and belt gladiators … At one point, director Jug Ravidojevic told me that Mirko Babic, who interpreted Constantine’s father Constance Chlorine, reminds him of Peter O’Toole. It was also a dividing line, where the division of our society could be easily spotted. Seven years have passed since then and few actually remember those details. What remains are two Steria awards that Constantine brought to Nis. Out of four won by the Nis Theater at this most prestigious theater festival. That counts. That is remembered.
And what will be remembered for, when enough water flows through Nisava, the second “Theater at the Crossroads” festival? It’s hard to predict. It’s easiest to be a general after the battle. But when it comes to art, that’s usually the way things are. The Romans used to say “Ars longa, vita brevis. Our society, and by this I do not mean only Serbia, but the whole Balkans, will always be divided. People will be divided into black and white, good and bad, smart and stupid, capital and provincial residents… But exactly at the crossroads, the same line that divides us also connects us. That’s no wonder in art. Moreover, that is its nature. Divisions will remain our fate for seven, ten and fifty years. Nothing will change here. But art will remain. That is why I dare, even though I am neither a general nor a prophet, to say that one day what will be remembered about the second edition of our festival is that it happened, despite the divisions, despite everything, maybe a little in spite, and that some good performances were played there. Everything else, my dear, will be covered by the green grass of my oblivion.
And who knows why that is good.
WITH A CROSSROADS IN ME
At the bottom of the map of Europe, bottom right, leaning over the abyss, the Balkans stand like some wrinkled wizard’s hat turned upside down; the origin of a great culture that has dissapeared somewhere, a waste site of millions, proud though underestimated, still seeking its place in history as if it had not already found and lost it countless times. Although constantly in self questioning, it failsto identify itmself with anything other than mourning, some quiet anger at “those others”, love and hatred for everything Balkan, whatever that is. And yet, people are intimate with each other, honest and kind. In the middle of those Balkans through which all Balkan roads lead,Nis stands. And I’m Nishlian. One cannot be more Balkan than that. It is geographically impossible!
Down there to the left, at the bottom of the map is the Iberian Peninsula. Like a saucer turned upside down on a large ocean table, it boasts about its isolation. Backed up by the mountains that separateit from the rest of Europe, it carries a huge history full of misery and painon its back. It’s too heavy. The edges of the saucer rise and the middle sinks under the load. The world champions of the civil wars, in their conflicts the inhabitants of the former Iberia managed to waste almost all the prestige and wealth gained in their conquests. And yet, that loss made them modest. Warm and kind, the people there open their welcoming hands.
The horrific events of the 1990s pushed me and all who were close to me to a completely unexpected crossroads. Confused, frightened and angry, I stood over broken road signs, deciding how and where to. With the support and accompaniment of my loved ones, I went as far as I could, only not to watch.
On one of the rims of the plate of the Iberian Peninsula is Vila-Real, a small town on the road between Africa and Europe. Moving there, I began to embrace a new culture and language; recognized and imbued with another lifestyle. With great effort, I have adopted a new cultural code. I am now a Vila – Realian just like I am Nishlian. If there were a „Pyrenees” benchmark, no one could be it more than me. It is psychologically impossible!
One Hadi in two worlds. Leaving one place and moving to another, like so many people before and after me, my identity has undergone a transformation. I was no longer a human at the crossroads, but instead carried the crossroads inside me. Living it every day for three decades, I understood its essence. It is not necessary to choose the path. Recognizing the road signs and following your own wishes, you can wander freely on the unfolding roads.
Feeling partially like two completely different social beings is equivalent to losing every root, but the tree, branches and leaves take over its role. Period of adjusting to the new “I” is difficult , but when that stage is overcome, all the learned frames disappear and for the first time you feel the globe as something of your own and inalienable. The legacies of socialism and capitalism, dictatorship and liberal democracy, the kingdom and the republic, the former empire and the eternally enslaved had intertwined through me, and still do … The differences are enormous. All this had to be reconciled … In my case, the unifying factor was theater. The organizational side varies from climate to climate, but the essence of theater is the same everywhere: you play on stage for some viewers. With the exception of my family, the only territory I can consider home is every stage in this world. Being rooted in theater helped me to overcome the extinction of the original roots that linked me to the old homeland and rootlessness in the new one. Thanks to theater as the base, the crossroads within me became wealth, and not burden.
Looking at the world through the crossroads, all differences between cultures, languages and understandings are perceived as links, not obstacles. Adopting the different, creating amalgams, pervading, are the wisest and most far-reaching achievements of European thought. It is impossible to neglect the existence of another, parallel flow, in the complexity of European ideas that celebrates the solidity, purity and immutability of nation and gender. Such a simplistic view of the social being is present all the time and, unfortunately, does often win the championship, but nevertheless, historically, the idea of mixing did always overpower with proven superiority. These two ideas about the world collide throughout European history. At some point, every European is forced to choose between them and the population of the Balkan and Pyrenees Peninsula is forced to do so more often than the rest. Thus the vast and exciting wealth of internal differences in these territories: dozens of nationalities, different languages, every hundred kilometersa different melos; one in the Iberian Peninsula, but as many as three basic religious groups in the Balkans… each, even minimal instability, encouraging people to relocate. Communities are very different, and yet they form the same corpus, living together in a very small area. They are united by the same history, territory and density – there are no deserts or forests here thatdivide, but rivers and bridges that connect, inviting interaction. Yet when the times are bad, everyone remembers only their own lineage, forgetting the good that their coexistence with their neighbors has brought. In times like these, if only they could, people from my peninsula would even set up volcanoes to demarcate them with hot lava. Fortunately, that’s impossible. They will battle, they will fight, but then they will approach each other again because they need each other.
In the face of the fatum of the history of these regions, the only hope of all people with good will is that at some point the period of stability will be extended so much that everyone will forget about the word war. Over the question of how to achieve this, many wise people spend sleepless nights. There is no easy answer, but I have a hunch and belief that rejecting simplification in understanding human relationships is the only possible way. It cannot be manipulated by people trained to perceive problems from multiple angles. One human who knows how to understand the other does not pick up weapons or turns into cannon fodder in a blink of an eye. A strong faith in constants: political, intellectual, identity or religious, is dangerous everywhere, and in these fields especially. Only constant questioning is a virtue. Living at the crossroads of ideas and seeing them all without being easily infatuated with the closest one is proof of awareness.
Thousands of times I have heard that art cannot change humanity. What a delusion! It is said that theater is a mirror of the world and it seems to me that the world is a reflection of theater. We create a fictional reality in the theater and then the one we live in is modeled under the influence of that fantasy. If the theater is bad, pamphlety and flat, so is the society in which it is born, but if it reaches the level of art its transformative power is extraordinary. Every true work of art enriches and changes anyone who approaches it. Theater art is not behind the others. Every good theater play is ambiguous and as such represents a crossroads in itself. Based on a transformation ritual that connects and excites the viewers, every quality act of theater has ideas, associations and meanings that intertwine and compete, leading the viewer toward cognition. Theatrical art is older than the people, contemporary religions and social arrangements, fashion and tendencies, almost everything we know today. It is not a means to any goal, but contains a goal in itself. Being multifaceted and complex, the theatrical art breeds ambiguity and complexity in our thinking. Good theater deletes simplifications and phrases by celebrating deep emotion and reason in all its nuances and questions. Wherever there is good theater there is hope. With every great theater performance, we slow down the clock ticking relentlessly, giving us a new chance wherever we are, especially if we are destined to live on two peninsulas at the bottom of the map of Europe. Theater has that power.
Nis, as a logical place for encounters at a crossroads, and the festival “Theater at the Crossroads”, proves in the best way that theater can only last as a medium of continuous learning and transfer of experience and knowledge, both between generations and among neighbors, whether emphasizing the Balkans, (as an essential link), or denying it, (using it exclusively as a geographical term). But connection through art (both in differences and in similarities) only confirms the necessity and value, of theatrical communication.
Through the form of a roundtable after each performance (the audience, theatrologists, journalists and theater artists), they are given the opportunity to “reflect” through the possibility of expressing their impressions and desires.These, ingeniously imagined moments, through the exchange of experience, opened the possibility, of live theater, without a ramp.And it is wonderfully moving andartistically powerful.
Lots of coffee is drunk, wonderful monographs are provoked, and artistic aspirations and longings, achievements and pains, which are the same everywhere in the world, sincerely exchanged.
But such festivals are necessary exactly for the reasons listed above, as a wind in the back, and all under the wings of the benevolent and hospitable residents of Nis.
THEATER AT THE CROSSROADS ’20
A crossroads is a meeting and a parting place. Both encounters and separations are equally convincing and provocative. Theater at a crossroads is a dramatic charge, reflecting conflicts: of the past and the future, in the present; tradition and modernity, in connotation with the time we live in; truths and lies, in creative competition; fiction and reality, in the imagination of the romancer; dream and reality; in the insomnia of the dreamer…
A crossroads is a temple of Goddess Talia. Theaters offer sacrifices here: diligence, success, innovation, creativity and artistic truth, to meet the challenges of timeliness, ubiquity, universality, humanity and vision, in a living reality of opposite values.
A crossroads can be reached on the 12th day of the 3rd month of the 20th year of the Lord: from the father, son and the holy spirit; from past, future and present, from fiction, reality and imagination; from sleep, reality and insomnia from: Sofia, Bitola, Skopje, Ljubljana, Cetinje, Banja Luka, Belgrade and Satu Mare; there you will find: Camus, Euripides, Pirandello, Lorenci, Dostoevsky, Andrei RozmanRoza, de Mise, Gavriliu, Dobreva, Torbica, Savin, Petrovic, Taufer, Lijesevic, actors and all other lovers, devotees, believers and pilgrims in the Temple of Talia.
A crossroads may be left on the 19th day of the 3rd month of the 20th year of the Lord. Some will leave feeling better, nobler, richer, tidier, happier, and some poorer and sadder than they came. Theater at the crossroads is a play, a play until self-oblivion. Those who get carried away in play will be cheerful, those who do not will be sad. Nis 2020 is a motive for playing, for competition, for prevailing in theater.
My humble self, the actor, was, both cheerful and sad, numerous times from playingtheater. I am now in a position to arbitrate. I kindly ask those who are sad not to be unhappy and those who are happy not to be overjoyed, and that everyone at the theatercrossroads in Nis, with the help of Talia, please bring experience and memories for the wealth ofnew pilgrimages.
THEATER AT THE CROSSROADS IN TIME OF CORONA VIRUS
This will be neither A Feast in Time of Plague nor Love in the Age of Cholera; simply today, on March 11, 2020, the second in a rowTheater at the Crossroads will be opened at the National Theater in Nis, and no virus, no protective masks, no isolation can stop the magnificent holiday of spirit that awaits us in the coming days.
Theater is LOVE!
In the Balkans, the sun is heating, almost 300 days a year. I do not know if this is one of the reasons why Greece is the homeland of the theater. But in its many centuries of spiritual and historical development, the various peoples of the Balkan Peninsula have created a multifaceted and rich cultural theatrical heritage.
Political, ethnical, and last but not least, economic factors have in the recent years, in one way or another, removed at first sight the close national cultures, and in some ways,cut the link between the creators in the Balkans.
Theater is LIFE!
Separation is not a priority in the time we live in, though everything around us is trying to separate us. Theatrical language knows no boundaries. Theater is a rich palette of seeking, studying, experimenting, combining the experience of the time, the ancient architects of theater art and modern technology. In order to be able to seek and feel at the intersection of time, similar to the „necessary” of the dilettante Trepljev, we still „need new forms” today, as well as new encounters, encounters with the audience, meetings with neighbors, with distant friends, meetings with colleagues.
Theater is TIME!
The time we live in, now and here. Confused, nostalgic, explosive, but bright! And gunpowder is a privilege of the Balkans! Crossroads, too!
And don’t be afraid of the corona virus. It is momentarely among us.
And THEATER is eternal!
Happy 2nd „Theater at the Crossroads Theater”!