Zaradi bolezni v ansamblu vse ponovitve predstave Peter Pan odpadejo, predstavo Štiri črne mravljice pa nadomeščamo s predstavo Kdo je napravil Vidku srajčico.


Uroš Korenčan, foto Mankica Kranjec


During an epidemic, the end of the world is discussed more often, the sense of cataclysm points to our anthropomorphic and egocentric understanding of the world. Our logic works as follows – if our life is in danger, and it threatens to end, then the world is about to end as well. Unfortunately, in this extraordinary opportunity to change things for the better, we are all too oblivious of the fact that the anthropomorphic (and ergonomic) environment that surrounds and threatens us, is genuinely conditioned and connected with our being, and that we affect it through our existence and action. Thus, the results of the study of the Irish Universities, proving that a large part of the plastics, intended for recycling, ends up in the oceans and that it is we Slovenians that contribute the most of floating plastics in Europe (per capita), were quickly forgotten after their publication in August. We barely noticed them, if at all; counting of the infected and potential closing of borders, which threatened our enjoying of summer holidays in 2020, took over all media attention.

Several performances, which will be presented as part of this year's festival programme, contemplate on our attitude towards the environment, but owing to the fatal determination of the festival programme with the current circumstances, this is hardly more than a coincidence. The latest festival edition was prepared in the marginal operating conditions. Due to the loss of our revenues, we already adjusted the scope of the festival to one-third of the usual in the spring, but with the increase of infections by the end of August, we had to face additional complications and cancellations. Thus the programme of the 15th edition of the International Festival of Contemporary Puppetry Art was forced to shrink, change and transform until the very end. What remains is probably hard to label “compromise”, as we were tempted to the end to remove the title “festival” and simply advertise guest appearances of several foreign companies instead. However, our decision for the festival, which is always a kind of production adventure, is a convulsive gesture of persistence, which seemed rather crucial at the given moment. Contemporary puppetry is by all means one of the most mobile forms of theatrical art, and owing to the international flow and exchange it is also the most advanced, innovative, and thematically relevant field of art. The termination of border crossing and the end of international exchange can deprive a generation of creators and audiences; therefore we see persistence in our work as a condition for the continuation of some broader and more fateful processes.

The meaning of the term “mission” seems to be gaining real weight in times of crisis. It makes me enormously proud that the Ljubljana Puppet Theatre has a team of capable collaborators that feel their mission in what we do – because we are all well aware of our responsibility. And I am also glad that we work in an environment that has offered our mission so much understanding and help during the ongoing construction work; therefore I thank all the organisations and individuals that helped us during the implementation of this year's festival. Since we are organising the festival in 2020, I am quite positive that we will make another one in 2022 as well – because we did not hide in the shelter.

And we will do everything to make an excellent festival in 2022. I am already looking forward to it!

General Manager of Lutkovno gledališče Ljubljana
Uroš Korenčan

Ajda Rooss, foto Mankica Kranjec


The 15th International Festival of Contemporary Puppetry Art LUTKE 2020 is rethinking its character. Every single day, the task of festival programming has led us to tackle new challenges brought upon us by the new social and theatre reality. The festival form was constantly changing and the programme was made and remade based on the continually changing epidemiological situation and border-crossing possibilities. We had to forgo the mysterious visual masterpiece The Great He-Goat, performed by the Cie Mossoux-Bont. dance and theatre group from Belgium, which we should have hosted together with Cankarjev dom Cultural and Congress Centre and the Maribor Theatre Festival. Together with the City of Women festival, we should have staged the bold puppet feminist manifesto Chambre Noire by one of the most promising and many-sided puppet artists Yngvild Aspeli. To be staged sometime in the intangible future are also a brutal version of Shakespeare's classic play about the ruthless pursuit of power entitled Macbeth Muet, performed by the Canadian La Fille du Latie group, and the visual discourse entitled M.A.R by the Spanish visual artist Andrea-e Reboredo.

The LUTKE 2020 festival will leave its mark in a time defined by uncertainty, and the imperative to tone down all ambitious art concepts and established programme strategies. The parameters of meeting art criteria are being taken over by qualities such as tremendous goodwill, instant flexibility, instinctive efficiency, and constant openness, but above all faith in the indispensability and purpose of making and celebrating theatre (the word “festival” derives from the Latin word festus, meaning festive, solemn, celebratory).

So here we have it – a truncated programme, intended mainly for adult audiences, but still one that brings a plethora of innovative performance delights. We are lifting the limits of how the space of puppetry art and animated forms is perceived, and we are expanding this space with superb creations of contemporary new-media art at the Kino Šiška premises. The audio-visual performance Beambreaker by the Slovenian inter-media artist and creative coder Tadej Droljc is based on continuous changes and manipulation of spatial audio-visual objects composed of broken light beams and sounds. The Last Temptation by Vlado Repnik substantively links a light park animation with a sort of topical discourse about the destruction of natural habitats. It is our great pleasure to substitute the originally planned production of the multidisciplinary French team Adrien M & Claire B, who bring together in their performances and interactive exhibitions real and virtual worlds with information technology developed and adapted specifically for them, with the Acqua Alta – Crossing the Mirror experience – a pop-up book in augmented reality.

With its diverse visual performance expressions, this year’s festival responds to the current social issues, opens a reflection on the contemporary period, and sets up new aspects of the current intangible theatre reality. The festival contemplates the issue of anthropocentrism or the impact that humans and technology have on ecosystems, freedoms of the individual, dystopian scenarios, and the complexity and disorderliness of the world. But will a mere critique suffice to co-create changes in society and new opportunities? It seems that we have found ourselves at a point where theatre has the possibility to rethink its mission. Art, the arena of creation, is one of the fundamental factors to give meaning to the human longing for constant transformation, and the longing to be in touch with endless intangible beauty. But it also demands of humans to step down from the predictable automatism and enables a space and flow to make sense of the new reality. Let’s step boldly into it!

Artistic Director of the Lutke 2020 Festival
Ajda Rooss