The Prešern Theatre Kranj / The Ptuj City Theatre, Slovenia

Author: Svetlana Makarovič
Director: Jernej Lorenci
Composer: Branko Rožman
Assistant Director and Choreographer: Gregor Luštek
Dramaturg: Marinka Poštrak
Stage Designer: Branko Hojnik
Costume Designer: Belinda Raulović
Language Consultant: Maja Cerar
Light Designer: Drago Cerkovnik
Makeup Artist: Matej Pajntar

First Micka: Ana Urbanc, as guest
Second Micka: Vesna Pernarčič
Anzel: Miha Rodman
Miller: Aljoša Ternovšek
Mother: Darja Reichman
St Thaddeus: Borut Veselko
Miller’s dead mother: Vesna Jevnikar
Judita: Judita Polak
Ciril: Ciril Roblek

Running time: 110 minutes

Micka loved Anzel and Anzel loved Micka. But their love did not have a happy future. It died together with Anzel, and Micka was left with a life she doesn’t want, a life that others want to impose on her...

The play Dead Man Comes for His Sweethearthas its roots in the eponymous folk song and also in Prešeren’s adaptation of Bürger’s Lenore. The author has approached the topic in a striking and different manner and looked at it from different points of view. By employing schizophrenia she introduces two heroines, two Micka characters, who fight for supremacy or survival. Further, there is also St Thaddeus, a runner, a seer, a confession-taker. And two mothers. Micka’s and Miller’s. None of them was able to escape the sharp pen of Makarovič. Miller’s mother, while already dead, scolds her son and gives him instructions how to mourn for her. Because she is superior to him in everything and reminds him that she has sacrificed everything for him, he owes her at least to treat her as she sees fit. Second Micka selfishly asks Miller to transfer the ownership of the mill to her if he wants her to marry him. She says that then she will be able to burn the mill down in broad daylight, because it will be hers. Namely, she knows a horrible secret – that Miller murdered Anzel, her dead lover. First Micka is gone, because there is no room for true love in such a world.

The Prešern Theatre Kranj is one of the smallest Slovenian theatres, but this does not mean that it does not have big ambitions and desires. The theatre is bound to the ambition or rather to the theatre art mission by the mere fact that it is named after the greatest Slovenian poet – France Prešeren (1800 - 1849). Although it is a repertory theatre, it is not afraid of bold moves and innovation. The theatre is recognizable on the Slovenian theatre scene by its thematically provocative, aesthetically purified and socially engaged performances. After years of hard work and gentle dreams, it can be said that its whole ensemble and staff have a theatre with dreamy eyes and a bold character. In the past years they have got a large number of awards, among them twice the Award for the best performance in Slovenian theatres which is given by the Association of Theatre Critics and Researchers of Slovenia (for the Authorial project “25.671” in 2013, and for the performance “Dead Man Comes for His Sweetheart” in 2014).

The Ptuj Cizy Theatre was re-established in 1995 on the initiative of Samo Strelec and The Theatre Zato. Based in a 230-seat hall within a recently renewed and modernised 19th-century historical building, it launched its first repertory season in Autumn 1995. Since that time the seven-member permanent team and over 200 guest actors have produced around 6 performances annually, staging communicative plays of different genres. The Ptuj City Theatre organises 2 theatre festivals, namely the biennial Festival of Monodrama, Ptuj, and the annual Slovene Festival of Chamber Theatre (SKUP).

“Although written 32 years ago, ‘Dead Man Comes for His Sweetheart’ appears entirely modern. The spoken word rings rhythmically through the masterfully segmented dramaturgical scheme, at once shackling the content to the ground and elevating it into the heights. It invites the spectator to open up and face the subconscious, inspiring an inner awakening and a profound sense of enrichment.”
Petra Tanko, Radio Slovenia 1, 28.03.2014

“Lorenci and his team direct the events at a deliberate pace, with interjections of silence and pronounced minimalism supported by an internal intensity. Impressively, they've managed to sharpen and tighten the play to its limits: even though the original has no tune, it takes place under desolate skies, this recreation is rife with song and delightfully well-tuned at that.”
Matej Bogataj, Delo, 1.04.2014