“Many examples of good practice, activities, and solutions exist in the field of theatre. But they are often divided and dependent on the competences of the leaders or individuals – the right people in the right places – in public institutions, in the non-government field, or in the broader theatre space. We need to recognize this and set up conditions where good things can connect, join, and co-exist and thus create a new high-quality space for development, as well as professional understanding and promoting the past, the present, and the future of Slovenian theatre culture.
The Slovenian Theatre Institute doesn’t invent anything new – rather, it triggers and creates the conditions for cooperation. The same goes for accessibility. If something is accessible, that doesn’t mean that it has a great number of visitors that grows each year. Theatre in the broadest sense of the world should become an undeniable part of life. Such connections in theatre only makes sense if we apply systemic solutions that serve as communication bridges and elements of networking for the entire theatre field in Slovenia, and connect Slovenian theatre to the international space at the same time.”
Form the Interview with Mojca Jan Zoran, the Director of Slovenian Theatre Institute in the period 2014–2022 (Večer Newspaper, March 3, 2015, page 10)
The Slovenian Theatre Institute (SLOGI) is a national public institute committed to preserving the Slovenian theatre culture, collecting and documenting materials from the field of theatre heritage, and various forms of presenting it. At the same time, it manages the development and promotion of Slovenian theatre culture and theatre arts of various genres: dramatic theatre, opera, ballet, puppet theatre, and modern dance, as well as experimental, research, and performance theatre practices, physical, ambient, and street theatre and other forms.
Its mission and method of work are collecting, documenting, keeping, researching, studying, interpreting, presenting and promoting
Slovenian theatre culture, theatre heritage, and theatre art in Slovenian and international space.
SLOGI is not just a Slovenian theatre institution but rather the hub of connections between them. It opens up new paths, especially in the field of presentation and popularization of Slovenian theatre and its heritage. As the connecting center, it is also the bridge between Slovenian theatre of the past and the present.
SLOGI operates in Ljubljana’s old city center, at Mestni trg 17, in the building where several famous Slovenians used to live: the baroque painter Fortunat Bergant, poet and the author of the national anthem France Prešeren, poet, editor and librarian Miha Kastelic, poet, writer, playwright, publicist and translator Miran Jarc, and the violinist Tomaž Lorenz.
The History of the Institute and its Activity
The Slovenian Theatre Institute (SLOGI) was founded on March 1, 2014. It is the legal successor of the Slovenian Theatre Museum, which was founded on November 29, 1952. The Museum’s first Director, Janko Traven, took on the massive task of collecting an unmanageable quantity of materials, which was previously housed at various archives of Slovenian theatres and the homes of theatre workers without a common system.
In 1962, Dušan Moravec took over the Museum and founded the collection Documents (Dokumenti), a periodic publication that addresses the Slovenian theatre history. On the 100th anniversary of the Dramatic Society, the Museum published a comprehensive tetralogy The Repertoire of Slovenian Theatres 1867–1967.
In 1978 the Slovenian Theatre Museum got a film museum department from the Association of Slovenian
Filmmakers in Ljubljana, so the Museum was called the Slovenian Theatre and Film Museum from 1979. After 1990, it moved from Cankarjeva ulica 11 to the much more appropriate work space at Mestni trg 17. In 1996, the film department separated itself from the Theatre Museum as it joined the newly founded Slovenian Cinematheque. The institution was therefore known as the Slovenian Theatre Museum until 2014.
The Slovenian Theatre Institute now operates on projects with much more intensity and variety than before. It comprises the image library, the archive of legacies, newspaper articles and electronic documentation, the video and audio archive, and the library. The Institute especially promotes international cooperation and educational activities.
Spreading Information on the Cultural Heritage of Slovenian Theatre
One of the main missions of the Slovenian Theatre Institute (SLOGI) is spreading information on the Slovenian cultural heritage.
SLOGI – Theatre Museum therefore continuously prepares exhibitions where the professional and broader cultural public are presented with the Slovenian theatre history, performances that marked the Slovenian stages, as well as the best Slovenian actors, singers, dancers, and other theatre creators (scene set designers, costume designers, directors, etc.). The museum promotes accessibility by publishing the materials from its collections on the internet and by presenting them in the form of virtual exhibitions – they are regularly published at the portals SiGledal.org and Museums.si.
Throughout the year, we hold events on the theory and practice of Slovenian theatre at the SLOGI hall. Theatre professionals and scholars, historians and critics participate in themed conversations, round tables, or symposiums to discuss various segments of the Slovenian and international theatre history.
Publishing is an important activity of the Slovenian Theatre Institute. The Institute regularly publishes the periodic publications Documents (Dokumenti) and the Slovene Theatre Annual (Slovenski gledališki letopis), as well as the occasional monograph on Slovenian theatre creators and theatre groups, various periods and phenomena from the Slovenian theatre history etc. In recent years, we often cooperate with other publishers, such as the Academy of Theatre, Radio, Film and Television, National Gallery in Ljubljana or Institute Maska (see Publications).
SLOGI has a high impact on the promotion of the Slovenian theatre heritage in the European cultural space, especially by participating in international projects financed by the European Union (see International Cooperation).