Maribor Theatre Festival to be held in-person in June

Maribor – The 56th Maribor Theatre Festival will be held from 14 to 27 June instead of its usual slot in October, but it will be held fully in-person. Its artistic director Aleš Novak said that while many other festivals decided to go hybrid, they insisted on fully live events.

Novak stressed on Wednesday that the festival was important for the promotion of Slovenian theatre, bringing together stakeholders and developing new audiences.

It is also a platform for experts to reflect on theatre creativity while at the same time promoting Slovenian theatrical production abroad.

Last year’s festival lasted only a day due to the epidemic, just to confer the Borštnik Ring, the country’s main award for theatre acting.

The productions from the 2019/20 season selected for competition last year will thus be played this year.

While ten were originally selected by Rok Bozovičar, only eight will compete because two are no longer played at their theatres.

Despite the uncertainties related to Covid-19, a number of guests from abroad are expected to appear.

Eastman, an acclaimed group led by director and choreographer Sidi Larbi Cherkaoui, whose Nomad production will officially open the festival on Friday, 18 June.

“As many as eight foreign productions will be shown as part of the accompanying programme, while several round-table debates will feature international guests,” said Novak.

He also highlighted Berliner Ensemble playing The Tin Drum directed by the theatre’s artistic director Oliver Rees, and Klub Taiga, a music and theatre project by Italy’s Teatro di Roma.

Programmes for youth and students will also be available, while for the first time, some shows will be played in front of homes for the elderly.

As part of today’s news conference held in front of the Maribor theatre house, the festival’s organisers announced the winner of the Borštnik Ring, which will go to Jette Ostan Vejrup, a Danish actress who has lived in Slovenia since 1989.

She will appear in one of the competing productions, Seven Days, by the Ljubljana City Theatre, where she has worked since 2004.