Are You Pro Safety, Directed by Anđelka Nikolić, Premieres on the “Raša Plaović” Stage

Production Are You Pro Safety?, directed and adapted by Anđelka Nikolić, premiered on the “Raša Plaović” Stage on 10th June.

The play is based on Biljana Jovanović’s three short stories, Are You Pro Safety?, David Šalamun’s travel stories Welcome to Dialisio and anti-war correspondence Wind Blows to South and Turns to North that Biljana had with Maruša Krese, Rada Iveković (Slovenian and Croatian writers respectively) and Serbian poet Radmila Lazić.

The play has been inspired by Biljana Jovanović’s life and activism (1953-1996), but it is not merely a tribute to the too early deceased poetess, it is also a testimonial on the impressive mark her personality has left – her intellectual, moral and emotional strength, her humanism and activism that surpass the limits of her biography, as well as the time and place where she created.

In addition, the play is about civil wars that took place in the region during 1990s, but it does not provide historical commentary and perspective, instead it is primarily focused on what Jovanović and her colleagues (Krese, Iveković and Lazić) did and attempted to do in order to try to prevent the oncoming disaster.

The play is dedicated to those who acted, spoke in public, joined their efforts, in order to prevent rhetorics  that led to madness of war, to explain to those who did not know what had been done in their name, to help the injured and the displaced, to help the suffering…

The audience rewarded the cast with a long and cordial applause when the performance ended. The performance is dedicated to all those who felt the bloody breakup of the country as their own failure and the four main roles have been interpreted by Vanja Ejdus (Biljana Jovanović), Sena Đorović (Maruša Krese), Milena Đorđević (Radmila Lazić) and Anastasia Mandić (Rada Iveković). The roles of 7 young men – Yugoslav Army soldiers, deserters, prisoners of war, assistant nurses, Territorial Army soldiers… have been interpreted by Petar Đurđević, Dragan Petrović, Stojša Oljačić, Vukašin Jovanović, Lazar Nikolić, Dragan Sekulić and Nemanja Stamatović.

The creative team consists of Branislava Ilić (dramaturgy and text adaptation), Vesna Popović (set design), Olga Mrđenović (costume design), Dr Dejan Sredojević (stage speech), Dr Maja Đukanović (Slovenian language editor), Irena Popović (music) and Marija Milenković (stage movement associate).

M.B.