Has the Future Already Arrived?

This book records the life of the Slovensko mladinsko
gledališče from its beginnings in the 1950’s until now – fifty
years of growth and development. It aims to shed light onto
the history of this theatre organism and looks at individual
performances, phenomena and trends of the Mladinsko
Theatre from different perspectives, focal points and
formats. Through personal accounts of the Mladinsko’s
creators, interviews with some of the “key players”, reflections from Slovene and
international contemporaries and critics – this anthology reveals the Mladinsko
Theatre’s rich and turbulent history – full of surprises and artistic somersaults.
To sketch the story and the character of the Mladinsko Theatre also means
defining the crucial segments in the contemporary Slovene and European theatre
in the last fifty years. The Mladinsko Theatre has become one of the significant
creators of Slovene and European “living theatre”, with its amaranthine search
and its orientation towards the future, towards new theatre utopias compelled to
contest the reality of here and now. Hence the title, which is a quote of DušanJovanović for Matjaž Vipotnik’s poster on the occasion of one of the biggest
breakthroughs for the Mladinsko – the participation at the World Theatre
Festival in Nancy in 1983: Est-ce que l’Avenir est déja venu? – Has the Future
already arrived?

Of course it has arrived, but we are all together still – just like Karl
Marx on the bicycle – waiting for Godot, waiting for the utopian
fusion of Thalia and reality, for the great romantic and avant-garde
breakthrough, that since the beginning has been the coveted goal
for the hundreds of co-creators of this theatre, from artists to
Wanting to make theatre a medium equal to other artistic
disciplines, the Mladinsko Theatre has woven a strong fabric,
a closely knit group of artists, a family that has even been slighted
as exclusivist and uncompromising. This has not changed, and it
has many a time caused anger and hostility on the part of politics,
especially cultural politics. The Mladinsko has survived (despite
its share of difficulties) as a smelter of precious metals. The stance of this theatre
has never been determined by preconceived theoretical concepts, but rather the
ability to make judgements and to sustain the consequences against the odds. No
one in the Mladinsko would offer an identical answer to the question about house
style, but everyone knows what should and should not be played there and how.
The story of the Mladinsko that you are about to read is interspersed with
numerous documents and anecdotes, with seemingly minute details and archival
materials, which we hope will evoke the intimate, “insider” story of a history that
appeared quite different from the outside looking in.

I have many people to thank. Barbara Skubic, Tina Malič and Mateja Dermelj, my
co-editors, were crucial in conceiving and carrying out of the idea of this book.
I would also like to thank the advisors Jana Pavlič and Jana Renée Wilcoxen and
the authors of the essays Aleš Erjavec, Rapa Šuklje, Andrej Inkret, Dragan Klaić,
Blaž Lukan, PrimožI Jesenko, Stane Bernik, Draga Potoanjak, Niko Gorpič. A very special thanks goes to Balbina Battelino Baranovič, Žarko Petan, Tone Pavček,
Dušan Mlakar, Meta Hočevar, Dušan Jovanović, Janez Pipan, Ivo Svetina, Eduard Miler, Petar Jović, Matjaž Vipotnik and many others who helped create the
history of the Mladinsko and have approached the genesis of this book with
enthusiasm and goodwill: we cannot thank you enough.

Tomaž Toporišič
Dramaturg of SMG,
January 2007


pdfCONTENTS (.pdf 115KB) 

Mladinsko premieres from 1955-2005

pdfPremieres (.pdf 57KB)