Cooperation Protocol signed in Banja Luka with the National Theatre of the Republic of Srpska

9 February 2022

Acting Manager of the National Theatre in Belgrade, Svetislav Goncić, and Acting Manager of the National Theatre of the Republic of Srpska, Dijana Grbić, signed the Cooperation Protocol on February 9, in the theatre in Banja Luka.

The signed Protocol specifies the improvement of cooperation aimed at the development of professional and artistic activities of both institutions which, among other things, includes the exchange of plays from the current repertoires, joint production of plays, joint performances at festivals, exchange of theatrical material and other forms of cooperation.

At the press conference organised on the occasion of that event, Acting Art Manager of the National Theatre of the Republic of Srpska, Aleksandar Stojković, pointed out that "even in the former Yugoslavia the National Theatre in Belgrade was one of the most important and largest theatres."

"When it comes to Serbian theatre culture, it is the largest theatre institution and we are very proud to say that, ever since the National Theatre of the Republic of Srpska has existed under this name, and even before, they showed us great kindness. We have had excellent cooperation that continued in the past year with the appointment of a new manager, our dear friend Svetislav Goncić. We certainly received full support and agreed on guest performances ", Stojković said.

Acting Manager of the National Theatre in Belgrade, Svetislav Goncić, said that he was very happy to represent that theatre, and that he was glad to have the opportunity to come to Banja Luka again, and visit the theatre where he had the opportunity to act on stage.

"I know the ensemble of this theatre very well and I follow its work. You have a very good ensemble structure and that is why I think that our cooperation this year, starting with these two guest performances, will improve in quality, and I hope that we will deepen that cooperation through joint activities which include, of course, work on a joint project. Being a national theatre, we are focused on the classics, but also on the modern classics. We refer to our writers, who do not necessarily have to be playwrights, but also writers who, in cooperation with playwrights, can be presented in dramatic form. I hope that we will develop some ideas for cooperation here as well, which involves sharing experiences both on the theoretical level and on other levels. I think this is a significant moment for all of us to deepen and strengthen those ties. We have entered the 21st century and even if we do not know where we are headed, because the future is always uncertain which is fine because it leaves room for creativity, otherwise it would be pure administration, but at least we know where we are coming from. It is necessary that we nurture our roots and support the reasons why such national theatres were first created. I think that we will have a good cooperation in that way, and our task is to try to make it the best possible”, Svetislav Goncić said.

Dijana Grbić, the Acting Manager of the National Theatre of the Republic of Srpska, thanked her colleague from the National Theatre in Belgrade for his quick response to the invitation for cooperation.

"The cooperation between the National Theatre of Republic of Srpska and the National Theatre in Belgrade has existed for a long time, but we wanted to make it official through a written document, in which we specified the directions of that cooperation. In addition to the exchange of programmes, actors, work on co-productions in the upcoming period that you will have the opportunity to hear about when the time comes, what we find also important is sharing experiences of people working in the technical department that we often forget, but which also make up the essence of the theatre. We discovered a lot of mutual ground in our talks as well, and I hope that this will really happen, because it was in December that we first announced it, and already in February we are making the first step. We wish to thank the National Theatre from Belgrade for the two productions that they are coming with. Apart from the play, which is closer to our audience, there is also a ballet show that the audience in Banja Luka does not have much opportunity to see, and it is a show of the highest quality, so I think that these two performances will be a small cultural holiday which can be also evidenced from the fact that we sold out the tickets so quickly", Dijana Grbić said.