International Theatre Institute ITI

World Organization for the Performing Arts
WORLD THEATRE DAY, March 27th 2013

Dario Fo’s Message

A long time ago, Power resolved the intolerance against Commedia dell’Arte actors by chasing them out of the country.

Today, actors and theatre companies have difficulties finding public stages, theatres and spectators, all because of the crisis.
Rulers are, therefore, no longer concerned with problems of control over those who express themselves with irony and sarcasm, since there is no place for actors, nor is there a public to address.
On the contrary, during the Renaissance, in Italy those in power had to make a significant effort in order to hold the Commedianti at bay, since these enjoyed a large audience.

It is known that the great exodus of Commedia dell’Arte players happened in the century of the counter-Reformation, which decreed the dismantling of all theatre spaces, especially in Rome, where they were accused of offending the holy city. In 1697, Pope Innocent XII, under the pressure of insistent requests from the more conservative side of the bourgeoisie and of the major exponents of the clergy, ordered the demolition of Tordinona Theatre which, according to the moralists, had staged the greatest number of obscene displays.

At the time of the counter-Reformation, cardinal Carlo Borromeo, who was active in the North of Italy, had committed himself to the redemption of the “children of Milan”, establishing a clear distinction between art, as the highest form of spiritual education, and theatre, the manifestation of profanity and of vanity. In a letter addressed to his collaborators, which I quote off the cuff, he expresses himself more or less as follows: “Concerned with eradicating the evil weed, we have done our utmost to burn texts containing infamous speeches, to eradicate them from the memory of men, and at the same time to prosecute also those who divulged such texts in print. Evidently, however, while we were asleep, the devil labored with renewed cunning. How far more penetrating to the soul is what the eyes can see, than what can be read off such books! How far more devastating to the minds of adolescents and young girls is the spoken word and the appropriate gesture, than a dead word printed in books.  It is therefore urgent to rid our cities of theatre makers, as we do with unwanted souls”.

Thus the only solution to the crisis lies in the hope that a great expulsion is organized against us and especially against young people who wish to learn the art of theatre: a new diaspora of Commedianti, of theatre makers, who would, from such an imposition, doubtlessly draw unimaginable benefits for the sake of a new representation.

Translation by Victor Jacono, ITI Italy and Fabiana Piccioli

Milano, January 29th 2013

Dario Fo, born 24 March 1926, is an Italian satirist, playwright, theatre director, actor, composer and recipient of the 1997 Nobel Prize in Literature. His dramatic work employs comedic methods of the ancient Italian commedia dell’arte, a theatrical style popular with the working classes. Fo’s work is characterized by criticism of organized crime, political corruption, political assassination, the doctrine of the Catholic Church and the conflict in the Middle East.



Owing to a large number of online bookings, we have been experiencing technical difficulties with our website, especially in case of bookings for A Flea in Her Ear. We apologize for any inconvenience caused during the months of January and February.

In order to avoid further difficulties, we hereby inform our patrons that we shall be unable to accept any online bookings for A Flea in Her Ear, and the tickets for this production will only be available from the box office.

Online booking will be possible for all other performances at our website www.jdp.rs/en.

The Yugoslav Drama Theatre reserves the right to resell all returned tickets and/or cancelled bookings.



The ART REDUCTION campaign, initiated last year, is still going strong and for certain productions it is impossible to get tickets only a few days after they have been released for sale at the box office. We would like to thank our audiences who came to see our productions and helped us feel the joy of performing to full houses, in direct contact with the audience which is what theatre is all about. Our efforts and a number of activities we have undertaken have resulted in larger audiences and only during the month of February around 15,000 came to our theatre.

Another reason for larger audiences is our new website which makes it possible to book tickets online and find all the relevant information regarding our theatre. The website was launched toward the end of last year and is visited by over 20 thousand people every month. The number of new users has gone up by 50 percent.

You can also find all our news and info on our Facebook page and Twitter. Using social networks to maintain contact with our audiences has been extremely helpful in locating any communication obstacles and removing them. Over a period of only one year, the number of people who follow us using social networks has quadrupled.



Deputy General Manager of YDT Tamara Vučković Manojlović and the artistic director of YDT Gorčin Stojanović attended the regular session of the UTE General Assembly which took place on 9th and 10th February this year at the Schauspielhaus theatre in Graz.

One of the main topics on the agenda was the UTE festival scheduled for June 2014 to mark the beginning of World War I. Many important theatres, members of the Union of the Theatres of Europe (UTE) expressed their interest in taking part in this project. Among them are the Schauspielhaus theatre in Graz, Prague National Theatre, Habima National Theatre in Tel Aviv, the Residenztheater from Munich and Teatro di Roma.

Other theatres have also shown interest in getting involved, theatres such as Maly Theatre in Moscow, Stuttgart National Theatre and Hungarian Theatre of Cluj but also other theatres which are not members of UTE but are, nevertheless, important members of the community of theatres in Europe – The Young Vic from London and Piccolo Teatro di Milano.

On this occasion, Ilan Ronen, president of UTE and general manager of the Habima Theatre in Tel Aviv, together with the UTE director Ruth Heynen and Tamara Vučković suggested June, 2013 and the Yugoslav Drama Theatre in Belgrade as the date and venue for holding a conference where all theatres interested in taking part in the festival would confirm their participation. This motion was unanimously endorsed by all the members of the Union of Theatres of Europe.


Captioned Performances

Starting March 2012, the Yugoslav Drama Theatre introduced subtitles in English on a number of shows from the regular theatre repertory. In this way we wish to enrich the cultural services in our city and bring our theatrical art closer to many of the foreign nationals who reside in Belgrade.

“Ljuba Tadic” Theatre:
• Biljana Srbljanovic SKAKAVCI (LOCUSTS), Director Dejan Mijac
• Milena Markovic ŠINE (TRACKS), Director Slobodan Unkovski
• Branislav Nušic TAKO JE MORALO BITI (IT HAD TO BE SO), Director Egon Savin
• Voltaire KANDID ili OPTIMIZAM (CANDIDE or OPTIMISM), Director Aleksandar Popovski

“Bojan Stupica” Theatre:
• Uglješa Šajtinac HADERSFILD (HUDDERSFIELD), Director Alex Chisholm
• Igor Štiks ELIJAHOVA STOLICA (ELIAH’S CHAIR), Director Boris Liješevic
• Laza Lazarevic ŠVABICA (THE KRAUT GIRL), Director Ana Đordevic
• Sarah Kane FEDRINA LJUBAV (PHAEDRA’S LOVE), Director Iva Miloševic



As a part of their two day work visit to the Yugoslav Drama Theatre, president of UTE (Union of Theatres of Europe) and artistic director of Habima Theatre of Tel Aviv Ilan Ronen, UTE executive director Ruth Heynen and deputy general manager of Yugoslav Drama Theatre Tamara Vučković met with the Serbian Minister for Culture Bratislav Petković and Radoslav Pavlović, advisor to the President of Serbia.

The topic of the meeting was a project under the name of The Fallen Angel of History initiated by YDT and UTE. This project is to mark 100 years from the beginning of World War I. WWI was also the topic of a two day conference held at YDT last October when it was decided to make YDT a centre of this project which would be launched by a festival scheduled for June, 2014. Major European theatres, members of UTE, will be taking part in the festival.

Participants believe it is important to mark the anniversary of events that led to the beginning of WWI as it is these same events that laid the foundations of modern Europe and determined the course of European history. The theatres around Europe will make their contribution by giving their own interpretation of Europe’s past and present through various projects and co-productions with other theatres.

Both meetings generated overwhelming interest and support for the project and it was pointed out that Belgrade would be the ideal venue for this event.

President of UTE Ilan Ronen and deputy general manager of YDP Tamara Vučković made a joint proposal for holding a conference at the Yugoslav Drama Theatre in June, 2013 where the details of the project in question and the names of its participants would be announced.


Free Wi-Fi

Since October, our visitors can get free wi-fi access in the Theatre.

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