Joy and chearfulness at the 7th Shakespeare Festival
The Beethoven and Shakespeare music piece, performed by the string quartet of the Belgrade Philharmonic, an unusual combination of two great artists, will open the seventh Shakespeare Festival. It is lesser known that Beethoven found the inspiration in Shakespeare for many of his works, especially for his music for string quartets, while the overture of Coriolanus is a thank you note to Shakespeare.
The National Theatre from Niš, the Kruševac Theatre and the Nisville Jazz Festival all collaborated on Shakespeare’s play “As You Like It”, based on Nikita Milivojevic’s idea. “The Two Gentlemen of Verona”, directed by Mija Knežević, will be performed by the actors from the Šabac Theatre, while the famous drama by Tom Stoppard about two secondary characters of Shakespeare’s Hamlet “Rosencrantz and Guildenstern are Dead” will be performed by the actors from the Serbian National Theatre of Novi Sad and directed by Igor Pavlović. The 7th Shakespeare Festival will be held from 12th to 16th September in the magnificent Villa Stanković in Čortanovci, near Novi Sad, with the help of the UNIQA insurance company. On the last festival day, the play “My Shakespeare”, directed by Nikita Milivojević, will be performed. In the play, the actors performing the plays of the great playwright are acting in the present and thus helping the audience to find out more about Shakespeare through behind-the-scenes adventures and their own experiences from acting in Shakespeare’s plays.
Tickets for this extraordinary theatrical experience cost 500 dinars apiece.
Nikita Milivojević, the Festival’s director and founder, has officially announced the programme of the 7th Shakespeare Festival, while Dragana Milošević, Provincial Secretary for Culture and Public Information, Vladimir Gak, President of the Municipality of Inđija and Sonja Marić, Director of the Marketing and Corporate Communications Sector at UNIQA Osiguranje, have spoken on behalf of the institutions and organizations that support the Festival.
“We are honoured that the Shakespeare Festival, an authentic celebration of culture and theatre, has been developing together with UNIQA Osiguranje for seven years now. Shakespeare himself said that faith in joy is almost the same as joy itself. We are glad that after a long time, the Festival is among the first cultural events to open its doors to art and theatre lovers in Serbia. This time around, this unique festival will perhaps more faithfully than ever, due to the current circumstances, evoke Shakespeare’s era in the magnificent building of Villa Stanković, with its outdoor performances just like in Shakespeare’s time. This year, the Festival, with the support of UNIQA Osiguranje, will be a safe place to enjoy good entertainment embodied in a unique blend of music and comedy. We all need more laughter, optimism and good energy, and when you can get it all in this unique place, at the Shakespeare Festival, we have no doubt that that joy will find its way to the audience,” said Sonja Marić, adding that UNIQA remains consistent in upholding the true values by traditionally supporting art and theatrical creativity.
The Shakespeare Festival is a unique cultural event which the European Network of Festivals officially included in the list of the most important drama festivals in Europe last year.
The Festival is designed to evoke Shakespeare’s time in an authentic way by performing outdoors and nurturing the memory of the world’s greatest playwright.
The establishment of the Shakespeare Festival in Serbia was initiated by theatre director Nikita Milivojević after the premiere of his play ‘Henry VI’ at the famous Globe Theatre in London in May 2012. In addition to the desire to present Shakespeare in a new way, Nikita Milivojević was guided by the idea of making Villa Stanković, an exceptional facility that is closed to the public, an attractive cultural and tourist place.
This festival provides a unique opportunity for the audience in Serbia to watch the most popular comedies staged by Serbian theatres, which are based on Shakespeare’s body of work. The Festival, which is traditionally held outdoors, will adhere to the relevant health recommendations and will take place in front of a reduced audience in order to implement preventive measures and maintain a physical distance among audience members.