Martin KrpanA Wild Puppet Adventure, length 0 min

  5+
Martin Krpan, foto Jaka Varmuž
The text for the wild puppet adventure Martin Krpan is based on the folk tale by Fran Levstik, published in The Slovene Herald (Slovenski glasnik) 160 years ago. Throughout its history the famous story about a courageous, strong, lucid, ordinary and modest hero lived to see many of its reprints, adaptations, illustrations, radio plays, theatre adaptations, and even an animated cartoon film. Although he was well aware of the fact that the then mostly illiterate, ordinary Slovenian people needed a simple story about a peasant hero, whom they could understand and identify with, Levstik, when conceiving his tale, succeeded not to fall into an unambiguous writing.

Martin Krpan has been one of the Ljubljana Puppet Theatre’s (Lutkovno gledališče Ljubljana) most faithful companion ever since its beginnings, as it was the very performance, with which the puppeteers from Ljubljana inaugurated their first venues in the then City Puppet Theatre (Mestno lutkovno gledališče, or LGL today), on Levstik Square in 1950. Therefore we often tend to refer to it as the very first “real” performance of the Ljubljana Puppet Theatre, although the theatre had been already operating since 1948. Presented with a new cast and a new visual design, Martin Krpan was also the theatre's first performance in 1984, when the capital's puppeteers finally obtained their long awaited own space in the Town House, which remained the theatre's home until today. The very first performance of the newly founded theatre was the Strike Brigade (Udarna brigada), presented on stage as an opening performance of the Ljubljana Festival in October 1948.

One of the fundamental works of Slovenian literature returned to the stage in a modern interpretation by a young director Tin Grabnar, well known to the habitual frequenters of the Ljubljana Puppet Theatre from his award-winning performance Somewhere Else (Nekje drugje). Martin Krpan, a hero, secretly smuggling salt with his mare, the glittering life at the Viennese court, the nonchalant cutting down of the marvellous court lime tree and the wild fights offer a wonderful starting point for yet another puppet creation. Characteristic of this performance is its use of the traditional technique of hand puppets. The story unwinds on a castelet – a classical stage, designed for hand puppets.  

According to Svetlana Slapšak, Martin Krpan is more valuable today than ever before. “He brings joy, rebellion, crossing of pseudo-moralistic borders and playfulness into the environment of hatred and gloomy gazes. As a typical trickster, a fraud, who is forced to appear as a little bit stupid and foolish, but certainly not as a representative character, he has all the features of such heroes: an unusual place of living (often the end of the world), an unusual animal companion, an unusual weapon, insensitivity to the challenges and offer of the great world … This kind of hero can live only in the world, in which there are no fixed borders, in which different, and differently speaking can communicate with each other, in which the survival is connected with unrecognised or illegal skills - for example, smuggling. There is no life without illegal economic migration”, wrote Svetlana Slapšak in the performance’s programme.


Tin Grabnar, a director of younger generation, expands his field of interest as in the area of alternative as well as dance and puppet theatre. Somewhere Else - the last performance he directed for the Ljubljana Puppet Theatre –, received a special award for a successful combination of puppet conception and application of modern technology in the theme realisation at the 50th International Puppet Festival PIF in Zagreb.


As part of the celebration of the 70th anniversary of the Ljubljana Puppet TheatrePremiere: 25th October 2018, VELIKI ODER LGL/GRAND STAGE LGL

Patron of the jubilee season is Petrol.
Author: Fran Levstik
Director: Tin Grabnar
Visual Design: Špela Trobec
Adaptation: Ana Duša, Tin Grabnar, Brina Klampfer
Dramaturgy: Brina Klampfer
Cast: Maja Kunšič, Martina Maurič Lazar, Zala Ana Štiglic, Marjan Stanić k.g. (percussion)
Songs (text) and rehearsal coach: Ana Duša
Scenography: Tin Grabnar, Špela Trobec
Lighting Design: Igor Remeta
Composer: Marjan Stanić
Songs (music): Mitja Vrhovnik Smrekar
Costumography: Sara Smrajc Žnidarčič
Language Coaching: Metka Damjan
Stage Manager and Sound Designer: Erik Krkač
Producer: Ana Rokvić Pinterič
Lights: Maša Avsec
Set Technician: Jure Popovič
Puppets, costumes and set production: Zoran Srdić, Iztok Bobić, Zala Kalan, Polona Černe, Sandra Birjukov, Marjeta Valjavec, Igor Remeta, Olga Milič, Špela Ulaga, Hana Juta Kozar, Žiga Lebar, Špela Trobec, Jože Lašič, Ivan Božičko (CNC), Cveto Kuniševič (3D sken), Nejc Šubic, Vladson, Zlatko Djogić, Lara Mastnak, Uroš Mehle s. p.
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