“ZAJC WITH YOU 2” – THEATRE IN THE AGE OF DISTANCE
In order for the audience to remain in the company of their theatre, all artistic ensembles of the CNT Ivan pl. Zajc have prepared a new cycle of online programs, “Zajc With You 2,” which we be available from May 8th via the Theatre’s official website, YouTube channel and other online platforms. The programme is part of the ADESTE+ (Audience Development Strategies in Cultural Organisations in Europe) project, which is co-financed by the EU’s Creative Europe Fund.
This time, however, the measures against the epidemic that regulate our everyday lives are not just the reason but also the inspiration for the program content. Rijeka’s artists, through short video formats, have decide to thematize the “new normal,” primarily social distancing, which has separated the theatre from the audience, but also the performers from each other. Through our online projects, we will warn of “abnormality,” though the current necessity of this “new normal,” as well as the ambiguous term “social distancing,” which turn our sociability, i.e. our humanity, and thus also theatre, into a danger. Preserving our sociability and humanity, and thereby also the necessity of the theatre, why wouldn’t we talk about a “safe,” “physical,” or simply “healthy” distance, rather than “social” distancing?
Distance from Distance
Along those lines, instead of “Aria at Noon” from the first “Zajc With You” cycle, opera soloists will now perform famous duets from operas from the Rijeka repertoire from this and previous seasons, but so that each duet in a different ways sets up the problem of “social distanced” opera performances.
Members of the Rijeka Symphony Orchestra will hold and record five chamber concerts at the construction sites of the Rijeka 2020 – European Capital of Culture infrastructure facilities: the Children’s House and the Sugar Refinery Palace. At the same location, members of the Rijeka Opera Choir will hold an a cappella performance of works by Ivan Matetić Ronjgov and famous choral sections of the Italian opera repertoire.
Ballets Without Touch
The Rijeka Ballet Ensemble, a ballet with character, will try to raise awareness of movement as its essence and as one of the joys of life in general in the second part of the “Zajc With You” program. Respecting the current restrictions in movement and contact, the ensemble raises the question of what, in the chaos of changes and new rules of movement and being, stands out from the dance and how they can present and bring it closer. Guided by this issue, the distinctive and special artistic characters of the Riejka Ballet Ensemble have created several “micro-choreographies” that will try to discover new ways of communicating in the language of dance at a time when that language is being significantly shifted and limited. In the next few weeks, the audience will have the opportunity to view the micro-choreographies Contact Forbidden, Box, BoNet, Ballet Glossary in the Air and Lace 2.
Drama Within Us
The Croatian Drama Ensemble will present and announce several theatrical performances which, due to the corona crisis, are still postponed for a while: “Practicing Life – Second Time”, “Oedipus” and “Madame Minister”, and we will also recall the play that confronts Rijeka with itself, “Leica Format”, as well as the unforgettable “Evita”. Each play and its announcement in the virtual space will come to life in a new and specific way, in cooperation with the directors of the plays, in various locations in the theatre, but also outside the theatre building, throughout Rijeka.
Besides that, the actors of the Croatian drama company will continue the favorite program “Little Zajc for a Good Night,” a series dedicated to the youngest audience members and the Rijeka Youth Theater “Kamov.” This time, in collaboration with the musicians of the Rijeka Symphony Orchestra, they selected the four best and most famous stories by the “Croatian Andersen,” Ivana Brlić Mažuranić.
Once a week, we will speak with leaders and pedagogues of the Fifth Ensemble, the Rijeka artistic ensemble that brings together young, differently capable people, for whom this time of certainly especially challenging.
In additional to fairy tales for the youngest, the Italian drama company is preparing a series of “parallel” interviews with the actresses and actors of its ensemble about their views on the current epidemic and social situation in which they have found themselves as artists and individuals, but also their views on the future, however uncertain it remains.
Far Away, and Yet So Close
We remind you at the end, that the first part of the online program, “Zajc With You,” shared a hundred videos, verses, arias, fairy tales, and choreographies with the audience that were viewed by almost 140 thousand viewers over twenty-five days. Though we are, of course, deeply satisfied with these results and the numerous positive reactions and comments of our audience on the other side of the screen, all employees of the Rijeka theatre, while preparing the new online program, we can hardly wait for the return of the audience to our auditorium. Until then, we will continue to be with our audience online – far away, yet so close.
Therefore, we announce that our program “Zajc With You 2” begins tomorrow, May 8 2020, and will be available on the Theatre’s official website, as well as on the YouTube channel and other social media (Facebook, Instagram, Twitter).