The 7th edition of the Drama Festival, scheduled for May 2020 had to be postponed due to the outbreak of a new coronavirus pandemic. Sadly, in 2021 it had to be postponed again for another year due to the persistence of the pandemic and will take place most likely in May 2022. If the Drama Festival had taken place as planned in May last year and this year, it would have brought to Ljubljana five superb theatre performances from Germany, Poland, Croatia and Serbia. Wonderful theatre evenings would have been accompanied by a diverse festival programme, including theatre workshops, topical round table discussions, post-show talks and concerts. The pandemic also deprived us of hosting the eminent Hamburg Thalia Theatre with the international co-production Neverland, directed by Antú Romero Nunes, in which the SNT Drama Ljubljana collaborated with the appearance of its resident member, the actor Marko Mandić. The main festival programme included four performances: a contemporary co-production staging of Molière’s Tartuffe directed by Igor Vuk Torbica. produced by the Serbian National Theatre and the Sombor National Theatre; the original a project by Bob Jelčić after Chekhov’s play Three Sisters produced by the Croatian National Theatre in Zagreb; Hotel Zagorje based on the eponymous acclaimed novel by Ivana Bodrožić, directed by Anica Tomić and produced by the Zagreb Gavella Theatre, and the internationally acclaimed production of Koltès’ play In the Solitude of Cotton Fields directed by Radosław Rychcik, produced by the Polish Theatre Stefan Žeromski from Kielce. In 2020 and in 2021, the Drama Festival would have been rounded off by the presentation of the Jernej Šugman Award for the best performance chosen by the audience.
One of the important companions and regular guests of the Drama Festival were the performances of the theatre director Igor Vuk Torbica who sadly passed away last June. At the Drama Festival we were fortunate to present three extraordinary performances directed by Torbica on the Drama Main Stage: Toller’s Hinkemann by the Zagreb Youth Theatre (Drama Festival 2016) and Shakespeare’s Titus Andronicus (Drama Festival 2018) and Tolstoy’s The Power of Darkness produced by the Belgrade National Theatre, and a winner of the first Jernej Šugman Award of the 6th Drama Festival in 2019. To commemorate the first anniversary of Igor Vuk Torbica’s untimely premature passing, we paid tribute to director Igor Vuk Torbica with the online premiere of an archival recording Emilia Galotti which he directed on the Drama Main Stage in the 2018/19 season. The cast included Maruša Majer who joined the Drama Ljubljana resident ensemble with this production. The recording of Emilia Galotti was streamed on Wednesday, 26 May at 20.00 on the Drama from Home platform on the YouTube SNT Drama Ljubljana channel.
In addition to the performances presented on the Main Stage and on the Small Stage in May and June 2021, we also organized a series of various events at the SNT Drama Ljubljana under the common title Drama outside the Door. These will symbolically pay tribute to the Drama Festival 2021 that could not have taken place, sadly, for the second year in a row due to the pandemic. One of the highlights of the Drama Festival 2021 would have been the festival premiere of the play The Night Writer by the author and director Jan Fabre. The formal premiere of the performance, which rounded off the repertoire of the 2020/21 season on the Small Stage, will be presented on the Main Stage on Saturday, 29 May 2021.