Widen your horizons and experience the atmosphere of Ulysses Theatre – an open-air theatre on Brijuni islands
From literature to opera, from modern music to science and technology, the term “Ulysess” can be connected to a variety of areas. However, all of the meanings and interpretations have something in common: “Ulysses” always refers to something progressive, modern and above all, different and creative.
When in Croatia, “Ulysses” primarily refers to visual arts, or to be exact, to theatre. Ulysses Theatre was founded in 2001 by two acknowledged artists, world known actor and director Rade Serbedzija and writer Borislav Vujcic. Breathing uniqueness from every pore, it is fair to say that this is no ordinary theatre.
The idea behind it is inspiring. The founders wanted to create a place where individuals with different education and experience, and most of all, different creative vision, can work together, in order to express themselves through visual arts and move the traditional boundaries of theatre. It seems that the idea behind it all is successful since with each year Ulysses Theatre attracts more visitors as well as aspiring artists and creative minds from all around the world.
Throughout the years, Ulysses Theatre with all of its performances and programmes turned into a cultural event of the summer you should not miss during your stay on the Croatian coast.
Ulysses Theatre takes place amidst the archipelago of Brijuni, a stunning location that contributes to the theatre´s charm and creates a magical atmosphere during the outdoor plays. The plays are staged within the walls of Fort Minor, a fortress on the island of Mali Brijun. The fort was built for military purposes, however, it was never used in such a way and until the present day it remained preserved as a valuable cultural and historic monument.
The theatre hosts performances every summer, from mid-July to mid-August. The honour to inaugurate Theatre Ulysses was given to the British actress Vanessa Redgrave who collaborated with the theatre again only a couple of years later and is sometimes considered the godmother of the theatre. The very first play performed on the stage of Fort Minor was Shakespeare´s work of art “King Lear”, that brought more than a thousand spectators to Brijuni islands in 2001. With Rade Serbedzija in the main role, “King Lear” has not lost any of its appeal and continues to be performed year after year, seventeen years in a row. Rade Serbedzija himself has once stated that playing in “King Lear” is one of the roles closest to his heart and that he always plays it with a lot of passion and dedication.
During almost two decades, the audience had the opportunity to visit the spectacular stage and enjoy magnificent plays such as “Play Beckett”, “Hamlet”, “Caligula”, “Romeo and Juliet ´68” and “Odysseus”. Members of Ulysses Theatre had more than once showed its respect for great minds of the region: season 2007 was entirely dedicated to one of the greatest Croatian writers – Miroslav Krleza, while in 2006 the theatre celebrated the 150th birthday anniversary of the scientist Nikola Tesla and produced a play in his honour called “Tesla´s Electric Company”.
From 2001 until today Ulysses Theatre has collaborated with many renowned Croatian and foreign actors, such as Vanessa Redgrawe, Ralph Fiennes, which makes it even more appealing to domestic and foreign audiences.
Therefore, while relaxing in one of our villas in Istria or Kvarner, try out something new and enjoy the magical Ulysses Theatre on Brijuni island.
photos by: Branko Kukurin and Kristijan Vuckovic