A favourite annual event returns on 21 November 2020 with the subtitle: We’re still here!
Theatre Night is a regular theatrical event, always taking place on the third Saturday in November. Prepared by theatres throughout Slovakia for their visitors, the programme runs late into the night. “Although 2020 has presented us with countless challenges, we don’t want to miss this year’s Theatre Night. Theatres are working to bring their audiences recordings of productions, behind-the-scenes tours, live streams and other inviting programmes,” says Vladislava Fekete, director of the Theatre Institute. The Government of the Slovak Republic’s current regulations concerning the coronavirus pandemic have made it possible to open the doors of theatres once again. The eleventh edition of the international Theatre Night event will thus take place in an unconventional way, in both ONLINE and OFFLINE spaces, and all on 21 November 2020.
Forty entities (theatres, cultural centres, art schools and cultural spaces) in sixteen Slovak cities will take part in the Theatre Night programme this year. This project is also exceptional for the creative ways it connects professional artists with amateur ensembles; for one night, all those participating become one big theatrical family.
2020 has been a year of many negatives, but it has also brought this year’s Theatre Night a significant positive: “Offering this project online will bring theatrical events closer to spectators who wouldn’t normally be able to get to them. Those interested in theatre will be able to see everything that the theatres have prepared under the current motto: We’re still here!” adds Vladislava Fekete.
As part of this year’s Theatre Night, the Slovak Chamber Theatre in Martin will present a live-streamed theatrical quiz, the Slovak National Theatre has prepared a discussion of an opera inspired by Anne Frank for its audiences and the State Theatre Košice is preparing a behind-the-scenes documentary on its new production Čierna voda (Black Water).
Studio 12 and the ASTORKA Korzo ’90 Theatre have joined forces to present an online discussion and staged reading of Belarusian playwright Andrej Kureichik’s Insulted. Belarus(sia), translated by Romana Štorková Maliti. The Andrej Bagar Theatre in Nitra will present an online publication and a theatre library, while the Jozef Gregor Tajovský Theatre in Zvolen has prepared an online programme, Noc so svetlom pre každého (A Night with Light for Everyone), which looks at the mutual enrichment to be found by engaging with otherness through culture.
The Theatre Dance Studio in Banksá Bystrica will present Jumble, a new international production. Local spectators can view the production offline, or live, while the work will also be accessible online for dance lovers who cannot attend in person. In this way, it connects ONLINE and OFFLINE spaces, and thus makes its art available to a wide range of residents, regardless of physical access.
Theatres are not only thinking about adults and are also preparing a programme for children. Presented by the Puppet Theatre at the Crossroads in Banská Bystrica, the Puppet Theatre in Košice, and the Žilina Puppet Theatre, children can look forward to staged readings, extracts of productions and more. Thanks to the new regulations, the Bratislava Puppet Theatre is planning the premiere of a site-specific project titled Záhrada (The Garden).
As befits their excellent reputation, amateur ensembles are also preparing a rich programme as part of the event, including the premiere of a new production by the RosArt Theatre Studio in Ružomberok. A film about the founding of Theatre KĽUD, which cultivates environmental awareness through theatrical activity, will also be interesting. Based in the village of Kladzany in the most polluted area of Slovakia, the so-called death triangle, Theatre KĽUD uses the local Zemplín dialects in its productions.
The parts of Theatre Night’s ONLINE/OFFLINE programme mentioned here are just a taste of what Slovak theatres and cultural institutions are preparing for their fans. “We invite each and every one of you. Don’t miss this unique opportunity to take a backstage look at your favourite theatre, and also visit one on the other side of the republic. You don’t usually have that option. Now you do, and it would be a great shame not to use it,” concludes Vladislava Fekete.