Yugoslav Drama Theater

Jugoslovensko dramsko pozorište
Kralja Milana 50,
tel: 3061-900, fax 3061-991
Ticket Office, tel: 3061-957

Director: Tamara Vučković Manojlović

The Yugoslav Drama Theater was founded in 1948, with the aim to gather together the top dramatic artists from the entire Federal People’s Republic of Yugoslavia, and to be, by the style and aesthetics, a Yugoslav opposite number of its kind to MHAT. The stage-manager Bojan Stupica got the support from the politicians and leading cultural officials to select the major artists from all the theatrical centers of Yugoslavia. The concept of the Theater specified by the politicians was only conditionally adhered to while, in its actual work, from the very start, it stood for the artistic license and endorsed the aesthetic credibility of the stage-manager and the actors.

The managers of the Yugoslav Drama Theater always belonged to the circle of the most significant and the most competent theater experts, irrespective of whether they stemmed from the ranks of critics (Velibor Gligorić, Milutin Mišić, Petar Volk), dramaturges (Jovan Ćirilov) or stage-managers (Miroslav Belović, Bojan Stupica). Initially, the managers of YDT, while developing the repertory, had put the stress on the great international and domestic classical works, but later on, in the fifties, they gradually the repertory also included the plays of the contemporary international and domestic dramaturgy.

The stage-managers of YDT have always stood out for the new and inventive interpretations of the classics of the domestic and international dramaturgy, whereby they changed the conception of the theater with us. We remember "Uncle Maroje" by Marin Držić and "Fishermen’s Quarrels" by Carlo Goldoni staged by Bojan Stupica, "Yegor Bulychev and the Others" by Maxim Gorky and "The Bereaved Family" by Branislav Nušić stage-managed by Mata Milošević. "The Braggart Soldier" by Plautus and "Uncle Maroje" by Marin Držić staged by Mirosav Belović, then "High Seas" by Branislav Nušić, "The Patriots" by Jovan Sterija Popović, "Le Misanthrope" staged by Dejan Mijač, "Hamlet" staged by Stevo Žigon, "The Theatrical Illusion" by Pierre Corneille staged by Slobodan Unkovski. The stage of YDT was a space on which the leading stage-managers of the entire Yugoslav territory tried their skills: Branko Gavela, Paolo Magelli, Slobodan Unkovski, Haris Pašović… as well as numerous international stage-managers: Jerzy Jarocki, Georgiy Aleksandrovich-Tovstonogov, Carlos Medina, Vitaliy Dvortsin…

Even at the times of major social turmoil, the Theater was open to major works of the contemporary playwrights from the entire Yugoslav territory: Dobrica Ćosić - "The Discoveries", Jovan Hristić - "Clean Hands" and "Savonarola and His Friends", Velimir Lukić - "Affair of Innocent Anabela", Slobodan Šnajder - "The Croatian Faust", Dušan Kovačević - "The Balkan Spy", Dejan Dukovski - "Cabaret Balkan", Biljana Srbljanović - "Belgrade Trilogy"…

The unavoidable part of the history of YDT are also the great actors who played on this stage. Initially there were Mira Stupica, Marija Crnobori, Rahela Ferari, Milivoje Živanović, then there also came Ljuba Tadić, Branko Pleša, Stevo Žigon, then Vojislav Brajović, Svetlana Bojković, Đurđija Cvetić, Cvijeta Mesić, Milan Gutović, Miloš Žutić, Branislav Lečić, Vladica Milosavljević, Mirjana Karanović, Žarko Laušević, Goran Šušljik, Nebojša Glogovac, Milica Mihajlović, Nebojša Ljubišić, Dragan Mićanović…

On October 17, 1997, the Yugoslav Drama Theater was met with a real tragedy – in a huge fire the Great Stage was fire-gutted. The Management of the Theater had been warning the public and prominent officials for a long time that the building had had old electrical installations. In the meanwhile, the performances were played on the stage of "Bojan Stupica" Theater. The Theater was left without the great stage, the head office building, makeup-room, dressing rooms, bathrooms, a club, adequate space for the holdings and the library… The reconstructed Yugoslav Drama Theater was open on May 32, 2003, with the opening night of the play "The Patriots" by Jovan Sterija Popović, staged by Dejan Mijač.

The Theater employs 60 members of the repertory company and about 100 workers employed in administrative and technical services.