Project Description

DEDICATED THEATRE

Under the name Theatre Maska i Pokret, Iva and Petar created Neko je ubio pjesmu (Somebody has Killed the Play), a one-act play with masks. They wrote the screenplay, created the masks and all the visual elements, and were the protagonists of the play themselves. The production premiered at the 22 MESS, a festival devoted to professional theatres presenting Avant-garde tendencies and was acclaimed one of the most important events of the festival (one of the festival’s highlights). The production was awarded various theatre awards e.g. a unique award from theatre critics, dramaturges and theatre scholars for the most thoughtful experiment on 22 MESS. This production represents one of their most important Works.

Already in that first play, the authors actually expressed their theatrical manifesto: belief in the poetic essence of theatre, in the challenge of its eternal mystery, not using the word but what is at the very core of the theatre’s origins – mask, music, movement.

MASK AS A DRAMATIC POETRY

Although the play is ambiguous and difficult to explain – like any true poetry – the basic meaning of the play can be summarised in one sentence: a group of characters (masks), each out of their own motivation and in their own way contributing to the crime – gradually killing grand pre-puppet Agava, from which everything originates and from which all the action in the play derives.
Through the character of the Agava puppet, the authors actually embody the eternal calling of poetic nature: sublime, beautiful, supple, plucked from humans, beheaded, buried with all honours and then betrayed, poetry, viewed through the ironic strands of life and in the face of death, remains what it is, spiritual, the metaphysical constant of every existence.

SYNTHESIS OF MASKS, DANCE AND MUSIC

Realising Craig’s visionary dream of an actor-marionette, they took a step further in their studious work. Not reducing the mask to the character’s typical definition, they brought her into an organic relationship with the action. The synthesis of mask, movement and music in their play evolves into a system of theatrical signs and symbols through which dramaturgy, stories of good and evil, life and death, poetry and nothingness are accomplished. A simple, suggestive, and always thoughtfully chosen stage sign realises the poetic-thought core of their idea.

By consciously limiting and reducing the choice of theatrical means to mask, movement and music, the authors maximise their connotations of content and meaning, bringing these means into a series of combinations and organic coupling.

This play is in the true sense exploration, which does not limit its value, “unusualness”, freshness and meticulousness – on contrary speaks of a different, more modern reflection on theatre art.

NEKO JE UBIO PJESMU

ONE-ACT PLAY WITH MASKS

The play, dramaturgy, choreography, masks and performance:
IVA KOSTOVIĆ-MANDIĆ & PETAR MANDIĆ

Music fragments:
Atrium Musicae de Madrid – Reconstruction of ancient Greek theatre music
J.S.Bach – BWV 639

Characters:
AGAVA, the gentle Puppet
KASTOR, the one wearing the uniform
KALA, the one who mourns
ERIF, the early born
KALA and ERIF as the Double Mask
KARLO, the dustman
Two malicious Old Women
THE ONE WHO FLIES

Awards:
22 MESS festival of professional Avant-garde theatres of Yugoslavia
Award of theatre critics, dramaturges and theatre scholars for the most important production at the Festival
22 MESS “Tree Gold Stars”, a traditional VEN award for “most thoughtful experiment”

Premiere:
COLLEGIUM ARTISTICUM GALLERY OF MODERN ART SARAJEVO 1980

Duration: 45 minutes without intermission

PRESS ARTICLES

“That performance belongs to that dedicated, Craig’s space of the theatre, in which, with the help of a mask and movement, in a rhythm of music, an attempt is made to stage a poetic image and metaphor, a living theatre.”

– Dalibor FORETIĆ, theatre critic

“Music is the rhythmic driver of the action, and although not a single word is said, the structure of the play is still eminently dramatic: it is not about musical or ballet theatre, but above all about dramatic events.”

– Dalibor FORETIĆ, theatre critic

“Their play introduces us to a somewhat mystical sphere of theatre in which a pure, carefully crafted poetic symbol is the only value with which the theatrical act in its ephemerality seeks to correspond with eternity.”

Davor Korić, dramatist, film director

“This is a direct theatre, like the biggest theatre I know, of the Robert Wilson Theatre, a theatre that does not seek any mediation to act on us. The invisible acts on us through the visible. And the most necessary forms of that visible here are movement, image, music. So anything that excludes any prose, or that minimises certain stories.”

– Slobodan Blagojević, author, poet, philosopher

Full Press Coverage

NEKO JE UBIO PJESMU – PLAYLIST

Neko je ubio pjesmu (Somebody has Killed the Play) premiered on 12.12.80 in Collegium Artisticum Gallery of Modern art in Sarajevo. It has been in repertoire until the end of 1982 and during that period of two years has been played with great success at many theatres and International Theatre Festivals in Yugoslavia, The Netherlands and Spain.

  • 22 Festival M.E.S. International Theater Festival MESS – Scene MESS
    Theatre Critics Award; VEN Award

    Sarajevo (YU), 02 April 1981

  • TV Sarajevo – Neko je ubio pjesmu TV adaptation
    Sarajevo (YU), May 1981

  • 9 International FESTIVAL OF MONODRAMA AND MIME
    Belgrade (YU), 30 May 1981

  • Petrovaradinska Tvrdjava
    Novi Sad (YU), June 1981

  • 11 Pozorisne igre BiH
    Jajce (YU), June 1981

  • International Children’s Festival
    Šibenik (YU), 03 July 1981

  • Dubrovnik Summer Festival
    Dubrovnik (YU), 27 July 1981

  • International theatre festival Mladi Otvoreni Teatar MOT
    Skoplje (YU), August 1981

  • Melkweg
    Amsterdam (NL), 28, 29, 30 February 1982

  • Provadja
    Alkmaar (NL), January 1982

  • Cankarjev Dom
    Ljubljana (YU), 23 April 1982

  • Theater De Lantaren
    Rotterdan (NL), 06, 07 May 1982

  • CC Tilburg
    Tilburg (NL), 21 May 1982

  • De Koepelkerk
    Purmerend (NL), 28 May 1982

  • Stadsschouwburg De Blauwe Zaal Utrecht
    Utrecht (NL), 02 June 1982

  • Festival of Fools Varend Variete Amsterdam
    Amsterdam (NL), 04 June 1982

  • Pula Film Festival
    Pula (YU), 22 July 1982

  • Split Summer Festival
    Split (YU), 28 July 1982

  • Festival MOT Mlad Otvoren Teatar Skoplje
    Skoplje (YU), 12 – 14 August 1982

  • Dubrovnik summer Festival
    Dubrovnik (NL), 08 August 1982

  • XV Festival Internacional de Teatro de Sitges
    Award Cau Ferrat for masterly use of the masks
    Sitges (ES), 15 – 24 Oktober 1982

Photo Gallery