Mimart Theatre, Belgrade, Serbia

Conceptualised and directed by Nela Antonović
Performers: Tanja Damjanovski, Anja Nikolić, Nikola Vranić and Djurdja Pavlović
Music selection, voice live and flute: Teuta Asllani
Set and light design and camera live: Lidija Antonović

Costumes: Anđelija Marković
Video art: Kristina Drašković Bočkov and Lidija Antonović

Running time: 45 minutes

The play To Swim Upstreamspeaks of the Theatre Mimart’s path, of those who have been researching in it for a long time, of the young artists who have joined it recently, starting to develop their artistic paths, of mapping out contemporary views and alternative methods of work. A river is like a biography, from the source to the estuary: it appears naturally, it has its source, it grows, it sometimes sinks underground, sometimes it overflows its banks, it receives the water from other rivers and creeks, it has its islands, and eventually it flows into another body of water. Its force changes, it can be mild and fierce, it can be calm and tempestuous, it can be stopped and exploited, but it always has its course, its direction. Swimming in a tempestuous river is difficult, swimming upstream even more so. The play focuses on the phenomenon of flow, the uninterrupted movement of bodies, phenomena and objects. Stage becomes a space of the inner truth, talent and persistence of the artist, the spiritual path which sets out creativity and honest stories of each individual. Art has a power to change human lives, so this play is a conceptual analysis of the phenomenon of the life of an artist which raises questions for the audience and gives answers which multiply into new questions. Personal experience of the contemporary artist nowadays becomes very important for survival, both of the artist and the contemporary theatre. The road of the artist links creativity with spirituality, as it shows us how to plunge into the source.      

The Theatre MIMART is the first independent, non-profit theatre in Serbia, founded in Belgrade in 1984. Since its foundation, Nela Antonović together with assembled artists from various fields, has been exploring the creativity in freedom of movement, as well as nonverbal communication, which overpasses all boundaries: lingual, political, cultural, religious, geographical…
The concept of the Theatre Mimart is an open process which creates corporal declarative art. Phenomena are intuitively explored through performative laboratory, because one can only enter the phenomenon using one’s body. Research through autodramaturgy of the body brings out new theatre aesthetics of signalism with risk. The Theatre Mimart creates a new form of communication establishing its own vocabulary where symbols are a universal language while ritualistic structure enables an idea to transcendent.
The Mimart took part in many European theatre festivals: Prague, Moscow, Sarajevo, Gelsenkirchen, Rostov, Antwerp, Sochi, Podgorica, Lviv,  Kiev, Oslo, Naples, Zagreb and others, as well as in world-leading video festivals of interactive arts.
Theatre Mimart celebrates its thirtieth anniversary in 2014. During this period of time it has staged 54 theatre shows and several hundred performances. 

The perennial experience in theatre research and work resulted in the publication of three books by Nela Antonović books - The Mimart Growth Rings (2000), Phenomenology through Movement (2004) and the e-book 25 (2009) marking the occasion of 25 years of work.