33. International Theatre Festival
DIVADELNÁ NITRA 2024

We present you the Festival Main
programme – Part I.

Fotografiju ustupio International Theatre Festival Divadelná Nitra

Divadlo Na zábradlí, Prague,
CZECH REPUBLIC
Michel Houellebecq – Bernard-Henri Lévy

PUBLIC ENEMIES

8/JUNE/2024
SAT/7:00 PM – 8:50 PM
(no intermission)
K. Spišák Old Theatre in Nitra –Great Hall
in Czech with EN surtitles

Opening of the festival before the performance.


Ludus Theatre, Bratislava
SLOVAKIA
Barbora Chovancová – Martin Kubran

A HISTORY OF CERTAIN VIOLENCE

based on the novel Histoire
de la violence by Édouard Louis

9/JUNE/2024
SUN/6:00 PM – 7:50 PM
Karol Spišák Old Theatre –Great Hall
in Slovak with EN surtitles

Public Q&A with theproduction team is held after the performance.


The International Theatre Festival
Divadelná Nitra 
will come in Košice

Trafó House of Contemporary Arts,
Budapest, HUNGARY

SINGING YOUTH

11/JUNE/2024
TUE/7:00 PM – 7:50 PM
(no intermission)
Tabačka Kulturfabrik, Košice
in Hungarian with SK and EN surtitles

Prior to the performance there will be an introduction
about the topic.

Public Q&A with the production team is held
after the performance.


PROLOGUE – KOŠICE

National Theatre Košice – Drama

MR PUNTILA AND HIS MAN MATTI

5/JUNE/2024
WED/ 7:00 PM – 9:30 PM


National Theatre Košice – Ballet

THE COURAGE EVERY DAY.

THE STRANGE PLEASURE OF LIVING III

6/JUNE/2024
THU/ 7:00 PM – 8:48 PM


National Theatre Košice – Opera

MACBETH

7/JUNE/2024
FRI/ 7:00 PM – 9:40 PM


PUBLIC ENEMIES

It is not the first time that dramaturge Dora Štědroňová and stage director Jan Mikulášek reached for the correspondence to give life to a paper conversation on stage. The production Correspondence V+W (2010) was created from the prodigious letters of Jiří Voskovec and Jan Werich. It became one of the foremost events of the Czech theatre after 2000.

In Public Enemies, from two monologues in letters a virtuoso dialogue emerges and is layered in front of us. Perhaps the best-known thinkers of the day, the French philosopher Bernard-Henri Lévy and the writer Michel Houellebecq exchanged for six months opinions on public and quite private topics – on literature, art, God, politics, relationships with parents and women. Their language is intellectually sublime and surprisingly commonplace. To be a public enemy means to be a critic and to be criticised, to be an executioner and to be executed. And so, these two last representatives of Western intellectual and persona, who epitomise man of the 20th century, not only prod us with their views and their godlikeness, but also reveal their weaknesses and sensitivities as they approach us.

The production Public Enemies is enormously powerful in terms of the concentration of dialogue and narration: one cannot tear oneself away. That, however, is also because of the phenomenal performances of the two lead protagonists, Miloslav König as Houellebecq and Václav Vašák as Lévy, and the striking images and spectacular set design by Dragan Stojčevski. The works by the Na zábradlí Theatre are regularly nominated and award-winning, such as the Czech Theatre Critics Awards (for 2023, the nomination went both to the Theatre and Miloslav König). The Theatre features regularly and to much acclaim at Divadelná Nitra: after the celebrated pieces by Petr Lébl and Jan Antonín Pitínský, it last brought to Nitra the cult production The Golden Sixties directed by Jan Mikulášek in 2014.


A HISTORY OF CERTAIN VIOLENCE

based on the novel Histoire
de la violence by Édouard Louis

The French novelist Édouard Louis is one of the greatest discoveries of contemporary European literature. His signature style makes his works highly popular among theatre aficionados.

The History of Certain Violence by the Bratislava-based Ludus Theatre is the first adaptation of Louis’ text History of Violence in a professional theatre in Slovakia. The production presents Louis’ authentic experience of being assaulted and raped in Paris. The very encounter of man with violence is only one level of the production. The fact has already happened and it cannot be changed. The production looks at what preceded the act and what followed.

The creative team slowly unravel the story, trying to comprehend, inter alia, what leads one to commit violence against another person. They explore the motivations of rapist, along with the influences of the context. Yet, they deal with the situation from the opposite point of view. They ask about what it is like to admit to being a crime victim. How not to get lost in a story that you must repeat over and over again, in front of the police, doctors, relatives. Ludus Theatre features at Divadelná Nitra for the first time.


SINGING YOUTH

Singing Youth is the name of the sculpture unveiled in Budapest in 1953 together with the official opening of the People’s Stadium Népstadion), in front of which it is located. The work of the Greek sculptor Makris Agamemnon, who is quite prominent in Hungary, is depicted by two girls and a boy playing the transverse flute. While the stadium was an exhibition piece of the first fiveyear period of Hungarian Communism, the sculpture illustrated the attempt of the totalitarian regime to misuse art for its own purposes.

The Singing Youth statue still stands, though the stadium was demolished at the initiative of Viktor Orbán to give way to a new National Stadium called Puskás Arena, that was built in its place in 2019. Today, instead of celebrating the working people, the nation is celebrated. Yet the question is whether there is a difference between the Communist and Orbán propaganda. The staging team led by the author and director trio Judit Böröcz, Bence György Pálinkás and Máté Szigeti is looking for answers. Through an alluring combination of documentary theatre and choral singing, they created a production that juxtaposes the Communist building era songs from 1945 to 1953 and speeches by government politicians and the Prime Minister, as well as pro-government rock song lyrics from 2010 to 2021.

The statue of the singing youth comes to life on stage in the interpretation of two actresses/singers and four actor/singers in snow white unisex workout clothes. Original music by Máté Szigeti is complemented by an unusual testimony about two historical periods, which are separated by seventy years, yet their similarity is frightening. The production that the Trafó present to high acclaim at major theatre festivals, such as Wiener Festwochen or BITEF, comes to Slovakia at a time when the issue of the abuse of art for the needs of an authoritarian regime is one of the key themes in our country today.


PROLOGUE – KOŠICE

A few days before the start of the Festival, the Košice National Theatre joins the programme with an exclusive showcase of selected premières of its ensembles.

On Wednesday, 5 June, the Košice-based Drama Company presents a production directed by Martin Čičvák Mr. Puntila and His Man Matti, an epic comedy by Bertolt Brecht in a modern directorial and artistic treatment, with excellent performances and live music.

On Thursday, 6 June, the Košice Ballet Ensemble presents Ondrej Šoth and Zuzana Mistríková production The Courage Every Day. The Strange Pleasure of Living III. The central motif of the work is faith, hope, love. Today’s world is a world of information and media. Values seem to have ceased to make sense. The consequence is the loss of illusions, nihilism and helplessness. Nevertheless, perhaps the only way out for us – as well as for the characters of the play – is not to give up the search for moral criteria of freedom.

On Friday, 7 June, which is also the opening day of the Festival, the Opera of the Košice National Theatre presents its recently released opera production of Verdi’s Macbeth as directed by Anton Korenči. The production does not want to be just a museum reconstruction of a famous story. It brings the story closer to the present, making it an intimate, personal and everyday drama, finding in it a biting humour that makes the audience reflect much more clearly on themselves and the world around us.


The International Theatre Fetival Divadelná Nitra 2024 is held under the auspices of the President of the Slovak Republic Zuzana Čaputová, the Chairman of the Nitra Self Governing Region Branislav Becík, and the Mayor of The City of Nitra Marek Hattas.

MAIN ORGANISER
Asociácia Divadelná Nitra / Association Divadelná Nitra

MAIN CO-ORGANISERS
Nitra Self-Governing Region
The City of Nitra
The Karol Spišák Old Theatre in Nitra
Slovak National Theatre Drama Company, Bratislava
National Theatre Košice
Tabačka Kulturfabrik Košice

CO-ORGANISERS AND PARTNERS OF THE ADN PLATFORM
Antique Books Zrkadlo, Institute of Archaeology of the Slovak Academy of Science Nitra, COMIN / Blue Dot COMIN, Theatre Institute Bratislava, Gallery Akcent, IPčko.sk, Pod vŕškom – Bookstore and Antiques, The Karol Kmeťko Regional Library in Nitra, Regional Tourism Board, Regional Public Enlightenment Centre in Nitra, Mareena, Music a Café Nitra, Nitra Gallery, Nitra Tourism Board, Nitra Cultural heritage, Pestrec, Sekáč je láska, Slovak Agricultural Museum in Nitra, Slovak Agricultural University, Joined Boarding Schools for Learners with Vision Impairments Bratislava, Private Elementary Arts School ARS STUDIO, The Helena Madariová Private Elementary Arts School, Private Conservatory in Nitra, The Dezider Kardoš Private Conservatory in Topoľčany, Tourist Information Centre Nitra, Constantine The Philosopher University, Uránia, Vila K o. z., Academy of Performing Arts – Theatre Faculty, The Prince Pribina Elementary School, The Jozef Rosinský Elementary School of Arts, Worldwide Ukrainian Play Readings Project

[izvor informacije International Theatre Festival Divadelná Nitra]