International Theatre Festival Divadelna Nitra (Medzinárodný Divadelný Festival Divadelná Nitra)

Deutsches Theater in Berlin performing "Don Karlos", photo by Ctibor Bachratý
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Country and Region SlovakiaNitra
Type of Festival Drama, Music
Location of Festival Nitra, Nitra, Slovakia
Festival Contact Information

Medzinárodný Divadelný Festival Divadelná Nitra
Svatoplukovo nam. 4
950 53 Nitra
Phone/fax: (421) 37-6524-870

Festival Description

It is the most important international theatre festival in Slovakia. The porgramme is wide—musical, movement, puppet and visual theatre are included, however the dramatic theatre is the main focus. The Festival takes place every year at the end of September in Nitra. A non-profit organisation Association Divadelná Nitra is the organizer. The 20th year of Divadelná Nitra has taken the motto “(don’t) tell your secret“.

Festival Dates September 27 - October 2, 2013
Festival Links

Festival Events:

Anniversary celebrations 2011:
  • The twenty year old Visegrad Group (V4) at the twenty year old Divadelná Nitra — Not only is the festival Divadelná Nitra celebrating its twentieth birthday this year. Also the Visegrad Group (V4) is commemorating its twentieth anniversary.
    • This year the festival programme will be enriched by two Polish plays, a Hungarian theatre and a Czech production. On 23 September 2011 the festival will be opened with a play by the world famous playwright Dorota Masłowska, No Matter How Hard We Tried staged by the TR Varsaw theatre. It is director Grzegorz Jarzyna’s come-back to Divadelná Nitra after thirteen years. Meanwhile, he has worked his way up to become a renowned creative artist under whose leadership the TR Warsaw has achieved a significant position in the pan-European context. The other Polish ensemble is the Teatr Studio, who are bringing a play from Warsaw about coming to terms with the communist past, entitled Small Narration directed and authored by Wojtek Ziemilski.
    • After some time, Nitra will again welcome the controversial director Róbert Alföldi whose work and attitudes provoke both Hungarian nationalists and conservative Christians. The festival will present his play The Hunting Scenes from Lower Bavaria staged by the actors of the National Theatre in Budapest. The viewers will be able to watch a story of a young man who had returned to his native village after the Second World War and found out that it was still governed by the spirit of Nazism. There has not been a year in the history of Divadelná Nitra without a theatre from the Czech Republic. The same applies to this jubilee year when one of the most progressive Czech theatres, the Prague Comedy Theatre, which has had the biggest number of nominations for the best play and actors‘performances in the past seasons and was declared the Theatre of the Year 2010, will present itself. The festival program will also feature the play Weissenstein directed by David Jařab who is known also to film audiences. The main protagonist of the dramatised story by Johannes Urzidil is a peculiar figure of the early 20th century Prague environment.
Newcomers to Divadelná Nitra and Slovakia 2011:
  • This year the festival will welcome ensembles who will present themselves to the Slovak audience for the first time.
    • The Deer House — A dance/visual art staging about family and death The Deer House, directed by Jan Lauwers, will be presented by the Belgian theatre Needcompany.
    • Paranoia — It will be the first visit to Slovakia also by the French ensemble Théâtre des Lucioles, with the play by Rafael Spregelburd, Paranoia. In the centre of this sci-fi comedy directed by Marcial Di Fonzo Bo and Elise Vigier there is a group of people whose task is to think up a story in 24 hours that would save the world from extra-terrestrials who live on fiction.
    • Void Story — The British ensemble Forced Entertainment from Sheffield is coming to Slovakia with its unconventional comics/theatre road movie directed by Tim Etchells and entitled Void Story. It is a unique opportunity to see the Slovak first night performance of the story about a man and a woman, who have lost their property and position within hours, not only for the Nitra audience, but also the viewers in Košice, because Forced Entertainment will present themselves on 23 September 2011 in the State Theatre Košice, as part of the project Košice — European Capital of Culture 2013.
Four plays in the Slovak program 2011:
  • The 20th year of the festival Divadelná Nitra is exceptional also by the fact that the Slovak program has been selected by one person — it is the director Rastislav Ballek. He has selected four Slovak theatres for the confrontation with foreign plays to be staged in the main program.
    • Buggers and Suckers — One of them is the Bratislava theatre SkRAT with Buggers and Suckers directed by Dušan Vicen.
    • Kubo — Nitra will also welcome the play Kubo (remake) by the Slovak Chamber Theatre Martin directed by Dodo Gombár.
    • Kitchen — The festival audience will be able to see both Nitra theatres: Andrej Bagar Theatre in Nitra with the play Kitchen from the workshop of the Hungarian director Zoltán Balázs and the Old Theatre of Karol Spišák in Nitra with the theatre adaptation of the famous American film The Graduate directed by the Czech director Jakub Krofta.
Inspiring working program 2011:
  • The International Festival Divadelná Nitra will also run the International Symposium Festival as a (Creative) Industry (on 23 September 2011, 10.00 to 16.00 h). The Theatre Institute in Bratislava is the co-organizer of the symposium. This year it is celebrating the 50th anniversary of its existence. On this occasion it has put on, in addition to other events, the exhibition, How to Preserve Transiency. Its re-run in Nitra will be open to the public from 21 September to 30 October 2011 in the Nitra Art Gallery.
  • Discussions with authors of the plays staged in the main program have, for several years now, been a popular part of the working program. During Breakfast with…, run daily at 10.00 at the festival meeting point, the viewers can discuss with the directors or the main protagonists what they had seen the previous day.
  • During the initial meeting of the new international project Parallel Lives – the 20th Century through the Eyes of the Secret Police there will be a lecture by Ľubomír Morbacher on the topic of the secret police in the former Soviet bloc, a screening of the film I didn’t hurt anyone by the Czech Television and a discussion.
  • A special event of the 20th year of the festival is Intersection: Intimacy and Performance — a re-run of selected parts of the international project of the exhibition Prague Quadriennial of performance design and space.
Accompanying program will fill the streets and institutions 2011:
  • In addition to the main programme shows and working activities, the festival viewers will be able to enjoy the festival ambience in the streets and institutions at 88 events of the accompanying program.
  • There will be 18 Czech and Slovak street theatres and 3 young Nitra theatre ensembles. The programme offers also 6 exhibitions. The undergraduates of the Academy of Arts in Banská Bystrica will again get a chance to present their creative ideas how to change the urban environment. There will also be Autumn Moments of Poetry, a nocturnal China Lantern Procession during the popular White Night and concerts. Participants of the training programme How to Understand Theatre and the integrating project I Will Give You a Tulip can look forward to further sessions. The theatre festival ambience will spread to cinemas as well: for film lovers a selection of European productions entitled has been prepared in cooperation with the Film Club Nitra based at Constantine Philosopher‘s University.


Other Sources:

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Podcast Interviews:
Articles and Reviews:
  • International Theatre Festival Divadelná Nitra opens for 14th time Nitra takes the stage, by Zuzana Habšudová (Slovak Spectator, September 19, 2005)
  • Interview: Truth lies at the theatre, Interview with the festival director Darina Kárová (Slovak Spectator, September, 19, 2005)
  • Top Pick: International Theatre Festival - Divadelná Nitra, by Zuzana Habšudová (Slovak Spectator, September, 24, 2001)
Video material:
  • Darina Kárová, riaditeľka medzinárodného festivalu Divadelná Nitra (TA 3, 20.09.2005)

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    Practical Info:

    • Divadlo Andreja Bagara
    • Staré Divadlo
      Ul. 7. pešieho pluku 1
      949 01 Nitra, Slovakia

      • Online Reservation
      • Discounts
        • Professional discount: theatre professionals, journalists, discount available by producing the registration card only.
        • Maxi discount: senior citizens, students, Euro 26, ISIC cardholders, unemployed, discount available on producing the relevant document only. Gratis: foreign and Slovak guests invited by the special letter, disabled citizens, holders of Disability Card, free tickets available by producing the Disability Card.


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