What awaits you in the new season?

31 August 2023

Now or never, that is the challenge the intendant and the principals of “Zajc” Rijeka have set upon themselves before their farewell season. The audience will have the chance to find the answers through premieres, acclaimed reruns, requested renewals, and numerous guest appearances await them.


Croatian drama’s farewell repertoire brings us a fusion of classical and contemporary thought. Award-winning director, Renata Carola Gatica, is bringing us a holiday classic, “A Christmas Carol”, ideal for ending the year in good spirits. At the end of the year (November 8), the world of theater also celebrates the printing of the first folio, the first edition of the collected works of William Shakespeare. He returns to “Zajc” with a new “Macbeth” directed by Eduard Miler. It is followed by classics in the making: Quilter’s “GLORIOUS!” and “Slučaj vlastite pogibelji” which is an adaptation of Kristian Novak’s yet-to-be-published novel directed by Ivan Plazibat. The last premiere of the season is to be directed by Senka Bulić. She will take on the challenge of Marinković’s “Gloria”.


Under the watchful eye of Dražen Siriščević, Opera is set to raise the standards one more time. Season opening belongs to a Gaetano Donizetti’s bel canto classic “Anna Bolena” conducted by Ville Matvejeff and directed by Diana Haller. In a year when theaters around the world will stage “La bohème” or “Madama Butterfly” to celebrate Giacomo Puccini’s 100th birthday, “Zajc” brings the author’s hidden gem, “La Fanciulla del West” (“The Girl from the West”). The birthday celebrations do not end here. We are also getting ready to celebrate the 170th anniversary of Antonio Smareglia’s birth with the premiere of his opera “Nozze Istriana” (“The Istrian Wedding”) under the conduction of Simon Krečič, while the direction is signed by Marin Blažević. The end of the season brings us two more masterful opera titles. Although only an introduction to the tetralogy, Richard Wagner’s “Das Rheingold” is one of the biggest challenges Opera of Rijeka has tackled in recent years; conductor Valentin Egel and director Dražen Siriščević will embark on this venture. The season ends with one of the most provocative operas of the 20th century, Adès’ contemporary classic “Powder Her Face”, conducted by Simon Dvoršak.


Under the direction of Maša Kolar, ballet is saying goodbye to three world premieres. The first is a theatrical diptych “Now and never again” by choreographers Maša Kolar and Jeroen Verbruggen. They will offer to the audience a contemporary reading of Miroslav Krleža, and of the modernity that surrounds us. The eternal classic, Collodi’s “Pinocchio”, choreographed by Michele Pastorini, is being prepared for our youngest viewers in 2024. The ballet season closes with Nadav Zelner’s world premiere, “Grand finale”.


Great things are to be found among the farewell papers of the Italian Drama and its director Giulio Settimo. Season opening is theirs to take as they celebrate Leonora Surian Popov and her 20th anniversary of theatrical work on the stage of Croatian National Theater Ivan pl. Zajca, Leonore Surian Popov. The multi-award-winning actress will remind the audience of a series of her successes in a musical story, “In the Rhythm of Broadway”, together with numerous guests who will join in. Once again “Zajc” will host Marco Lorenzi who is ready to bring us a truly explosive performance, “Kamikaze”. Also, In addition to Lorenzi, the guest of the Italian drama and our audience will be Petra Blašković, who will direct the play “From Istria… with Love!”.

You can find more about each premiere, as well as reruns and renewals, on our website.


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General sponsor of the Ballet
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