The first and second Festival day
Guests from Slovenia and two plays from Serbia at the International Children's Theater Festival in Subotica
Sunday, September 20 / Monday, September 21
On Sunday, September 20 and Monday, September 21, in the Main Program of the International Festival for Children in Subotica, three plays were performed: "It's Ernest" by the Puppet Theater "Heaven" from Slovenia, "Red Riding Hood" by the National Theater "Tosa Jovanovic" from Zrenjanin and "Gulliver" by Little Theater "Dushko Radovic" from Belgrade.
The play "It's Ernest" was performed on Sunday after the opening ceremony, on the "Jadran" stage at the National Theater in Subotica. Puppet theater "Nebo" from Slovenia was the only guest ensemble from abroad, due to well-known circumstances, the Coronavirus pandemic. Andrej Štular, stage designer, puppet designer and one of the actors, as well as actress Petra Stare, expressed their satisfaction with the fact that they were able to perform the play outside the borders of their country. "This is our first trip abroad since the beginning of the pandemic, and we haven't played much in Slovenia since March - we have only performed at some summer festivals since August," said Stare.
Their play deals with the relationship between the girl Ana and the cat Ernest. "I feel that this play can show children how nice it is to have a friend. When we have it, it doesn't matter if we quarrel, but that we remain friends and respect each other, accept who we are", said Petra Stare and added:" We love this show very much because it is composed of gags and looks like a live cartoon" . Her colleague Andrej Štular pointed out that the reactions of children to the play they sometimes perform are unexpected, and that adults also have interesting reflections: "They told us that it is a story without violence and without any aggressive scene, although there are some conflicts. There were some philosophical statements and all kinds of reactions as well."
"Little Red Riding Hood" was performed at the Children's Theater in Subotica on Monday, September 21. This puppet show is based on one of the world's most popular fairy tales. Miroslav Maćoš, one of the main actors in the play, described the specifics of this interpretation of the famous work: "This Little Red Riding Hood has been modernized in some way. We played it in a different way, not through the classic story of Little Red Riding Hood, but through the relationship between the characters. The challenge is that only the two of us play and we are both on stage almost all the time, as a hunter, Little Red Riding Hood, mom, wolf, and storytellers. The show is physically demanding, dynamic, witty. "Wherever we played it, we had a good response from the audience."
Maćoš also emphasized the importance of coming to a festival of this reputation: "Going to an International Festival is always important, regardless of the circumstances. It’s an event, not just when it comes to playing a play in front of a new audience. You can see what your colleagues are doing, to enter new streams of puppetry. It is always a pleasure to come here." Regarding the fact that this year's Main Program is not of a competitive nature, Maćoš said: "It's great. We came here to show what we can do, to talk to each other, to exchange experiences, to see who is going in which direction. There is no such pressure, as when the festival is competitive. The basic and most important part of our job is for the audience to enjoy. "
The main program of the second festival day was closed by the performance of "Gulliver" by the Little Theater "Dushko Radovic" from Belgrade, on the "Jadran" stage at National Theater Subotica. This puppet show talks about traveling into the unknown as a great challenge, which can be a great danger. About the innovations that this play brings to the famous text, director Isidoga Goncić said: "We all know where Gulliver traveled and what it looks like. We made an image of the whole new landscape in which he fell, and that was one of the bigger changes, that we visually defined that space more precise. Also, the fact that Gulliver was so good always annoyed me. He is not like that at all. That was one of the ideas - to make him good from evil. That is the charm of growing up and maturing."
Isidora Goncić referred to the process of working on the play at in the time of Corona, and the return to the festival life: "We have been making the play for a very long time, 7-8 months since February. That was not planned at all. We went through everything and it can be seen in the spirit of the show. This is our first trip and I think that we must have been excited for a month before, simply knowing that we are going somewhere. We are very happy and it is good that the festival exists this year as well. It's wonderful that we're participating here."
In addition to live performances, the play "Queen of Colors" by the Austrian Fauerblau Theater was shown in the Eurocinema. An achievement signed by directors Monika Zöhrer, Klaus Seewald is a fairy tale about the queen and her subjects - colors.
On the second day of the festival, the Student Exhibition of the Festival Poster was opened at the Foundation for Youth Culture and Creativity "Danilo Kiš", and the promotion of the book "Perfect Darmar" by Vladimir Andrić was held at the Elementary School "Miroslav Antić" in Palić.
On the third festival day, on Tuesday, September 22, the repertoire includes two performances in the competition program: "Baby penguin who wanted to fly" by the Regional Puppet Theater Bryansk from Russia, that will be screened at 4 pm in the Eurocinema, while play "Fattie” by Youth Theater Novi Sad will be performed live at 5 pm at the National Theater Subotica on the "Jadran" stage. In the side-program at the Open University Subotica, from 19:30, takes place the promotion of the collection of works "Theater for Children - an Artistic Phenomenon", while at 8 pm at the same place will be held the 11th International Forum for Research in Theater Arts for Children and Youth: "Women's Creativity in the Theater for Children and Youth and the Festival as a Social Phenomenon."