Socially critical, competitive, fun, childishly mischievous – at festivals of theatre, dance, and performing arts, you can enjoy the latest Slovenian and international productions. At the same time, you can visit special locations, such as streets in old town centres, castles, and old power plants.
Without (language) barriers
You don't understand Slovenian? That’s all right, many artists don't. The performers on festival stages speak many languages, and often they don’t even speak a word at all. They also bring you into their world with ease of movement and by playing with fire, so some of the most popular experiences are street theatre and multimedia performances.
Ljubljana Biennial of Graphic Arts
One of the oldest biennials of graphic arts in the world placed Slovenia on the map of fine arts in 1955. Through the decades, this biennial has been attended by artists from the East and the West and from Third World countries. The Ljubljana Biennial encouraged the establishment of similar events around the world and influenced the development of contemporary graphic arts in Slovenia. Today, you can see an extensive collection at the International Centre of Graphic Arts at the Tivoli Park Manor.
In 1964, Slovenia was the first country in the world to organise a biennial in industrial design, where the greatest achievements from Slovenia, Yugoslavia, and other countries of the world were placed on show. Over time, the biennial witnessed many innovations from the likes of Ron Arad, Konstantin Grcic, and Philippe Starck, whose work can now be seen in the extensive archives of BIO
In Ljubljana, since 1995, two weeks in October have been dedicated to learning about the latest creative efforts of women, women creating bonds, meeting together, talking, and forming the future. Men are certainly welcome, so they can become aware of the role and position of women in art and in a broader context and so they can contribute their ideas and recommendations to improve the situation.
Maribor Theatre Festival (Festival Borštnikovo Srečanje)
If you are interested in the best Slovenian theatre productions, visit Maribor in October and one of its main cultural attractions, which is more than half a century old. This is a festival featuring selected stage performances from the past season of Slovenian theatre. The best of the best is awarded by a panel of expert judges, and a deserving actor or actress receives the great honour of the Borštnik Ring for their lifetime achievements.
This festival focuses on showing innovative approaches to creating and intertwining artistic disciplines. It brings various creative artists to Ljubljana in August – established artists as well as those who we still need to learn about and appreciate. You will certainly enjoy it if you want to see something different, daring, unusual, and experimental. Young Lions is also a place to discuss various artistic practices and to develop ideas for creating programmes with a difference.
In summer, it may happen that, while exploring the lovely attractions of old town centres, you encounter fire. Don’t worry, it wasn’t started in the street by a pyromaniac or a dragon, it’s a fire installation made by artists of the Ana Desetnica Festival. At this international street theatre festival, you can see fire eaters, jugglers, puppeteers, acrobats, dancers, musicians and other performers. Ana Desetnica also has a younger sister, Ana Mraz, whom you can meet in Ljubljana in December as a part of the holiday celebrations.
It’s not a large festival, it doesn't host prominent names, and it's not in the limelight. Why should you then visit the Fronta Festival? Because it's special. Because it focuses on contemporary dance. In September, artists from all over the world gather in Murska Sobota to show what's new and different in the world of dance. The festival is valuable because it gives visitors the opportunity to learn about future trends and allows young dancers from various schools and academies to introduce themselves.
Why visit just one town or city? In Slovenia, visitors only need a brief time to experience a number of adventures in various towns. Look through this catalogue of historical cities and towns, pick a place and go for a visit!