Pašović on Enabled Theatre for web portal

Director Haris Pašović and his ensemble cast are working intensively these days at the Serbian National Theatre (SNP) in preparing the play “Enabled Theatre”, which will premiere in Novi Sad on April 6.

The play deals with the lives of children and people with autism and cerebral palsy, but also the lives of their family members and the institutions that are part of their lives, their everyday life. That is why the preparations for the play included close cooperation with the “Milan Petrović” School. The Project, which is co-financed by the EU through the “Creative Europe” programme, brought together several institutions: SNP, Festival Grad teatar Budva, the “Tala” Dance Centre from Zagreb and “East West Center” from Sarajevo. Thus, after the premiere, the play will be performed in the mentioned cities as well.

How is it possible that, as a society, we realized only in the 21st century that people with disabilities must be helped, if only to “put their problems on paper” in order to get things moving, so to speak?

– Well, the fact that for years parents of people with developmental disabilities, therapists who work with them and a significant number of activists have been working to raise the awareness has borne fruit. It has simply become much more important both locally and globally than it was before, so it is a good shift in society, that society is becoming more aware. I will not say that it is ideal now, it is far from ideal, but we can testify that there is still progress being made and that this progress somehow has a chance to be even greater in the future. One of the reasons, I think, when we talk about Novi Sad in particular, is your school “Milan Petrović”, which is an exceptional school for people with developmental disabilities. In my opinion, they are at the level of, say, the Scandinavian protection of persons with developmental disabilities, which is truly a great achievement. First of all, I am referring to the work of the long-time Director Slavica Marković, who recently retired, who is a true heroine of the fight for the rights and protection of people with developmental disabilities and who somehow managed to develop a centre together with her phenomenal colleagues. We have been working with them for over a year, I am deeply impressed by each therapist, because they are all women, mostly, from whom we have learned a lot, from the way they observe and treat, help people with developmental disabilities, to how they communicate in society and with their parents.

Why am I putting so much emphasis on them now? You know, in that somehow slightly increased awareness, I emphasize that it is not much, but still, it is logical that the focus is on the persons with developmental disabilities themselves. They are the ones who need support and help the most. Right next to them are their parents, who live under great stress, make many efforts to provide their children with the best possible life. We somehow forget the third component in that world, which are the therapists.

How will it look on stage, since all of this has to be taken into account, because it is delicate to transpose it artistically, and it can also happen that it does not reach the audience as it should?

– From the beginning, we were well aware of the particular nature of the task and the overall project. For more than a year, in addition to the “Milan Petrović” School, we have been cooperating with institutions and with special education teachers from Sarajevo and Budva, thanks to which we have a truly phenomenal professional team, with whom we check everything related to the truthfulness and credibility of the life we wish to portray, the lives of people with developmental disabilities and close people who are around them. I think we have avoided the problem, so to speak, because we are very aware of it and are in continuous contact, and sometimes even with some of the people with developmental disabilities who can participate in such a process as advisors.

We decided to make it as a piece of art, not a document. This is not an activist play, a programme, this is an artistic play. The way we would do “Hamlet”, we are doing a play about the world of people with developmental disabilities.

When we asked ourselves the question of how we can best be useful to people with developmental disabilities and those who are close to them, we realized that we can only do so if we give it our best, and the best of us, artists, is our talent, our artistic knowledge, experience and how we tell stories, in this case on stage.

You know our actors well, are there any from other areas?

– No, this is, in fact a co-production between Sarajevo, Budva, Novi Sad and Zagreb, but we have agreed that the cast will comprise the actors from the SNP and the artistic collaborators are also from other cities. One person who is a gem in your city, besides the already mentioned Slavica Marković, is Gordana Đurđević Dimić, a world-class actress and such a valuable talent. Historically, such talents rarely appear. We studied together, went through many projects together. There are other fantastic actors, both younger and middle generation, such as Sanja Ristić Krajnov, Marko Savković, Aljoša Đidić, Milan Kovačević, Jelena Antonijević, Aleksandar Sarapa, Marija Feldeši, Mina Pavlica, Vukašin Ranđelović and Rade Perović. Of course there is also Lidija Stevanović. The two of us have also been working together for a long time, 43 years, since my first play at the Academy. She is also a great Serbian actress, and a great friend of mine.

Author: N. Pеjčić, web portal:



Ko-financirano od:
Ko-finansirano od strane Evropske unije
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