July 30, 2020 - Although this year's edition of the Purgatorije Festival in Tivat will start on August 1 as announced, the current epidemiological situation means that the premiere of a new play produced by the Tivat Center for Culture and the Academy of Dramatic Arts in Cetinje, is postponed. "The Other Side of the Wind" is ready, and the ensemble is eager to present it to the audience.
The starting point for the creation of the play was the poems "The Incredible Sea Song" and "The Other Side of the Wind" by Miroslav Mika Antić, a Serbian poet, director, set designer, journalist, and painter.
"We will tell the story of some of our sailors, not exactly Mika's, but ours. "The Other Side of the Wind" is a poem with excellent dramatic potential that we used as a template, and then, again, with his poetry, we put the story together so that the character is a segment of each story. By fitting the characters together in this way, we tried to talk about love, about growing up, about life, about the sea - which is a symbol of a beautiful, but turbulent life that must still be lived. And for us, art and acting are life," Branko Ilić, dramatic artist, Assistant Professor at the Faculty of Dramatic Arts in Cetinje, and director of the student play that was to premiere in Tivat, told Radio Tivat.
"This is an exam in the subject of acting, which, we hope, will look a lot like a good play if it is acted well. There was no classical directing here, but learning the art fof acting. When the acting is well arranged and the performance is good, and when we have a good story to work with, then we have everything we need, direction concept-wise, so I hope that it will be accepted by the audience," Branko Ilić points out.
"One must live, one must work, so creating in the time of an epidemic is not a precedent. The situation with the virus and protection measures is indeed awkward. Still, we fully complied with them when creating this show," Ilić explains the working conditions during the past month in Tivat.
"Of course, we were able to carry on thanks to the management of the Tivat Cultural Center, which recognized the importance of the fact that art must not stop and that culture is not "the last hole in the pipe," as it is in our country and the region.
Thanks to the excellent management of the Center, Neven Staničić, and Vojislav Kaludjerović, everything went as it should because they enabled the students to be in isolation and to have practically no contact with the outside world. The students entered this project healthy, no one was ill, nor is anyone now, we did not infect anyone, and we managed to reconcile the corona situation and acting."
It is undoubtedly a difficult time for everyone, even for a culture that is our essential need, and its absence in our lives can have consequences for our spiritual growth.
"Culture has always been spared because it is often perceived as less important than other things. We are trying to make this different. We were also able to come to terms with our destiny, finish the exam online, hold a couple of seminar papers, finish, and give grades. We will all be satisfied and go swimming. But I am lucky to have excellent students for whom it is more important to cope and, despite the adversities, finish their work when they might need to rest.
If you can sit in a cafe, be on a plane or in the street with a mask, why can't you go to the theater and why can't you sit in a hall with 100 seats, according to the number prescribed? And the cultural envoys themselves are discouraged and not up to date. They should insist on and demand that their programs are shown. I am not in favor of not respecting the measures, but you have to live and work. And acting is our job. Very quickly we will have to face the economic problems caused by this situation. "
The situation in the world is complicated and complex. But historically, there have been more complicated situations in which culture existed, in times of war, economic crises, and even epidemics. And it always managed to survive.
"It can do it even now if we take care of young people if we make them theatre-lovers who will continue to insist on the survival of culture." The Tivat Cultural Center knows, feels, invests in, and cultivates young talents, and is the right place for a regional theater, "says Ilić.
The premiere of the play "The Other Side of the Wind" was initially planned on a small stage in the Buća-Luković mansion. Due to epidemiological conditions, it will be performed on the Summer Stage, where is much more space, both on stage and in the auditorium.
"Physical distance in theater acting is absurd. It's just the kind of art that needs direct contact between its performers. That's why we had to be responsible for ourselves and others, be healthy at the start and maintain our health. The eight of us worked in the large, well-ventilated hall of the Center, and everything went well. "
The premiere was postponed because the epidemiological situation has worsened, and the NKT measures have been tightened, proscribing that over 40 people are not allowed to gather outdoors.
"There are already eight of us, plus wardrobe, a make-up artist and a technician, which is 15-20 people in the team, so there is no sense in running a big stage for just 20 more people in the audience. We hope that the number of infected people declines and that the measures will be mitigated very soon to allow 200 people to gather outdoors again. Of course, we will harmonize with all the National Coordination Body measures, and we hope that the Prime Minister will be there in the middle of August. It is essential that we are ready, "Ilic concluded.
Purgatorije will be held, dynamic of the program depends on epidemiological situation
The Director of the Cultural Center Tivat, Neven Staničić, pointed out earlier that the program of this year's Purgatorije will undoubtedly be reduced and rely mainly on local productions. The plan includes plays "Filomena Marturano", "Bokelian D-mol", "Little Pirate", "Tre Sorelle", "Jami District" with the celebration of its 100th performance, but also a couple of guests - "Don Quixote" by the City Theater from Podgorica and the Bar Chronicle, then "Twilight of the Gods" by the Belgrade Drama Theater and "Colonel of Birds" of the City Theater of Podgorica.
This year's Pugratorije will have its own literary and musical segment, but the dynamics of the program will depend on the epidemiological situation.
Source: Radio Tivat