Thursday, 20 January 2022

50 Years of Ivana Brlić-Mažuranić Theatre and Concert Hall Slavonski Brod

January 20, 2022 – In 2022, Ivana Brlić-Mažuranić Theatre and Concert Hall Slavonski Brod celebrates 50 years as the central stage for culture in Brod Posavina County. Celebrations begin with a performance of Shakespeare's Midsummer Night's Dream.

From statues, sculptures and street processions, to family homes, festivals and schools, the name of famous writer Ivana Brlić-Mažuranić (1874 – 1938) is kept permanently alive on the streets of Slavonski Brod. Famed as an author of children's literature, her fairytales drew on Slavic mythology and have been compared to the work of Hans Christian Andersen.

Ivana_Brlić-Mažuranić_1.jpgStatue of Ivana Brlić-Mažuranić in Slavonski Brod

This beloved, adopted daughter of the city also lends her name to Ivana Brlić-Mažuranić Theatre and Concert Hall Slavonski Brod (here). The venue is the largest and most prestigious performance space in Brod Posavina County and is celebrating its 50th anniversary in 2022.

Celebrations will begin on January 29. Some 50 years ago, the opening performance in Slavonski Brod's new theatre was made by the esteemed Croatian National Theatre Osijek. Coming full circle, to mark the beginning of the special anniversary year, Croatian National Theatre Osijek will return on the very same evening.

Kristijan_Cimer.jpgCroatian National Theatre Osijek perform 'A Midsummer Night's Dream' © Kristijan Cimer

Rather fittingly, they will perform one of William Shakespeare's most popular and widely performed plays – A Midsummer Night's Dream. Like the works of Ivana Brlić-Mažuranić, Shakespeare's fantastical play takes place in a world filled with fairies.

Ivana Brlić-Mažuranić Theatre and Concert Hall Slavonski Brod

Kazališno_koncertna_dvorana_Ivana_Brlić_Mažuranićredtgfvjn.jpgBy night, Ivana Brlić-Mažuranić Theatre and Concert Hall Slavonski Brod

The Ivana Brlić-Mažuranić Theatre and Concert Hall Slavonski Brod opened on 29 January 1972. However, its dedication to Ivana Brlić-Mažuranić happened over two decades into its life. The theatre has only been named after Slavonski Brod's most famous writer since 1994. Before then, the theatre had been dedicated to Valpovo-born Đuro Salaj, one of the founders of the Communist Party in Yugoslavia.

In addition to organizing theatre and music performances, the venue plays an integral part in three of Slavonski Brod's most important and most popular annual manifestations – Dance Days, In The World of Fairytales and Brod's Music Summer.

Kazališno_koncertna_dvorana_Ivana_Brlić_Mažuraniću5yrefdzsxgcfhbhkj.jpgOne of the theatre's most popular assets is its ability to hold outdoor performances. They take place in the courtyard immediately outside.

Held every April - around the birthday of Ivana Brlić-Mažuranić - the In The World of Fairytales festival (here) celebrates the life and work of the famous author. In Slavonski Brod, it's not only the theatre that's named after Ivana Brlić-Mažuranić – so too is one of the schools.

Children from Slavonski Brod and from nearby play a huge role in the festival. Up to 5000 of them attend performances of the writer's works at the Ivana Brlić-Mažuranić Theatre and Concert Hall Slavonski Brod. The festival also features a street parade with costumed characters from fairy tales by Brlić-Mažuranić.

usvijetubajki.jpgIn The World of Fairytales festival Slavonski Brod

The Children's Theatre Company Ivana Brlić-Mažuranić (founded in 1980) has been operating under the auspices of the Ivana Brlić-Mažuranić Theatre and Concert Hall Slavonski Brod since 2007. In that time, the company and theatre have strived to preserve and perform some of the lesser-known works by the writer. Some of Ivana Brlić-Mažuranić's stories are today out of print. Indeed, some of her writing remains unpublished.

Ivana_brlic_mazuranic_II.jpgIvana Brlić-Mažuranić

Within the further anniversary program, Ivana Brlić-Mažuranić Theatre and Concert Hall Slavonski Brod will revisit some of the same plays performed at the venue in its very first year. Croatian National Theatre Osijek appeared at the theatre no less than three times in that debut year, so you should expect their return to the stage in Slavonski Brod later in 2022.

Croatian National Theatre Osijek perform William Shakespeare's 'A Midsummer Night's Dream' from 19.30 on 29 January at Ivana Brlić-Mažuranić Theatre and Concert Hall Slavonski Brod. Tickets are priced 70 kuna.

For more information about Slavonski Brod and Ivana Brlić-Mažuranić, look here.

To keep up with happenings in Slavonski Brod, bookmark TCN's pages here.

Thursday, 19 December 2019

How Ivana Brlić-Mažuranić's Characters Found Advent in Their Hometown!

Malik Tintilinić, Domaći, Palunko, Kosjenka, Regoč, Potjeh and Stribor are the characters from the works by Ivana Brlić-Mažuranić, a famous Croatian writer.

Those characters are known to every Croatian child, and now they've come back to their hometown of Slavonski Brod. Both the young and the old in the town are happy to see them walking around Slavonski Brod as a part of the event "The Advent of Long Ago" (the title of the event is a play of words based on the short story collection by Ivana Brlić-Mažuranić).

Advent iz davnina2.jpg

The town of Slavonski Brod created a whole new experience of Advent for their visitors but also for the people of the town, based on the fairy tale world from the writer's imagination. Ivana Brlić-Mažuranić wrote some of her best works while living in Slavonski Brod, and the town's main square is named after her. The hologram light spectacle on the water wall of the canal by the fortress of Slavonski Brod provides the unforgettable experience of the Ivana's world of fairy tales. Numerous decorations all over the town invite you to take a photo with a favourite character of Ivana's.  

On the main square you can find a large pop-up book of "Tales of Long Ago", where the visitors can find the Stribor's Forest, dance with the Grandma and the Brownies, spend time with Quest, Maruna and Ljutiša and take a photo with the bride Neva by her mill (please, if you have no idea what we're talking about, check out this treasure I just found while researching the translations for this article: the .pdf of the English translation of the Tales of Long Ago! I know what I'm gonna be doing on a first winter evening in Zagreb, reading the tales I've read many times, but in English.)

The locations are not accidental, as the legend says that the Brownies jumped in front of Ivana and her children, lead by Wee Tinkilinkie in their family home by the promenade, and the fortress where a lot of events for children are taking place must be the same fortress Reygoch saved.

Numerous workshops with original names are prepared for various generations of visitors: Hlapić's red boots, Frozen Tinkilinkies, Stribor's Wheat and many others. There are two skating rinks in the town, in the fortress and at the main square, and many concerts will be organized in this period.

Advent iz davnina4.jpg

Ivana Brlić-Mažuranić is one of the most famous Croatian writers, repeatedly nominated for Nobel prize in literature. She lived in Slavonski Brod, where the Tales of Long Ago were written while Ivana took care of her seven children. Published in Croatian in 1916, they saw their first English translation in 1922 in New York (accessible through the link above), and in the next ten years, they were translated to Swedish, Czech, Danish, Russian, German and Slovakian language.

To commemorate the memory of our world-famous author, Slavonski Brod started the project of the reconstruction of Ivana's family's house, with the intent to turn it into the Ivana Brlić-Mažuranić Interpretation centre. In order to create that world of magic and fantasy in the centre of town, they're working with Helena Bulaja Madunić, who made Ivana's tales famous around the world (again). In 2002, she and a team of international artists created one of the first animated interactive digital works of art in the world „Croatian Tales of Long  Ago“. The project won numerous awards and can be accessed at The town of Slavonski Brod plans to remember the most famous Croatian children's author Ivana Brlić-Mažuranić in the future to a greater degree, creating the recognizable, innovative and valuable items of cultural heritage, which can become a worthy tourist attraction.

Friday, 28 April 2017

Castles, Boats and Fairy Tales: Turning Cultural Heritage into Tourist Attractions

Apart from countless museums, galleries and historic sites that make up a major part of the cultural offer in Croatia, there are certain parts of our local heritage that are often ignored or haven't yet been presented in an attractive way. In recent years there's been a surge of projects aiming to interpret Croatian cultural heritage in innovative ways, and we bring you a list of five great examples on how to turn an overlooked or otherwise mundane subject into a spectacular attraction worthy of sharing with the world.

Thursday, 31 March 2016

Croatian Museum Nominated for European Museum of the Year Award

Winners will be announced April 7-9 and Ivana's House of Fairy Tales in nominated with 49 museums from 24 countries.