Zagrebački plesni ansambl & Umjetnički centar Svetvincenat. Mediteranski plesni centar & Festival plesa i neverbalnog kazališta Svetvinčenat
At this conference, ZDC is represented by Snježana Abramović Milković, Artistic Director.
Zagreb Dance Co, Hebrangova 36, 10000 Zagreb, Croatia
Art Centre, Svetvincenat bb, Svetvincenat, Croatia
www.zagrebackiplesniansambl.hr & www.svetvincenatfestival.com
Contact: Snježana Abramović Milković
art center (exclusively arts; of any type)
nonprofit artistic organization (association), established in 1970 by a group of professional artists
Zagreb Dance Company (ZPA) is one of the two oldest contemporary dance ensembles in Croatia and teaches, produces, and presents dance to audiences inside and outside Croatia. The Company’s mission is to provide new generations of dance professionals with a comprehensive artistic education that fosters excellence in technical performance, freedom in artistic creation, a greater awareness of dance as a form of expression, and a deeper understanding of the cultural impact of arts. The goal is to develop dancers who possess technical proficiency, creative liberty, a perspective on aesthetics, critical thinking, and an appreciation of the artistic self. Furthermore, it is the organization’s desire to educate and re-define the prospects of young artists in society and to facilitate the trans-national mobility of artists and artistic works through cooperation with foreign artists, particularly through organizing the Dance and Non-Verbal Theater Festival San Vincenti and residencies in the newly-renovated Art Center where the future Mediterranean Dance Center is planned to open.
Decision-making: Decisions concerning art and management are made by the artistic director, Snježana Abramović Milković, in cooperation with the members of the Company and producers.
Organizational openness: The Company’s overall artistic and organizational objectives are: encouraging artistic creativity among Croatian artists; activating artistic and cultural exchanges through various dance disciplines; opening cultural borders; developing links with national, regional, and international artists and festivals; strengthening Croatian contemporary choreographic work inside and outside the country; promoting arts and cultural development within society, especially in the culturally-neglected Istrian area when organizing the dance festival; developing programmatic, governance, and fundraising frameworks to help secure organizational and financial sustainability in the long term. These objectives are implemented through the production of new dance pieces and a dance festival and through organizing seminars, workshops, and so on in the future Mediterranean Dance Center.
Venue/s / resources: The Art Center is located in the former Svetvincenat Social Center. It currently functions as a summer art center and should be developed into a permanent production, residency, and educational center, the Mediterranean Dance Center, open throughout the year. This will make it a unique center for performing arts in Croatia. The building has 460 m2 of interior space consisting of the ground floor and a gallery, recently renovated. It contains a multi-functional hall of 215 m2, a 60 m2 club space on the ground floor, and offices and a media library in the gallery. The renovation has not yet been completed and the venue is not fully equipped.
Budget: more than €100,000 and less than €300,000.
The Company has now been organizing the Dance and Non-Verbal Theater Festival in Svetvincenat for 12 years and its production constantly involves it in various types of co-productions. In Zagreb, the Company also produces dance pieces on a regular basis, for which we invite artists from different fields and from all over the world to work and express themselves creatively in Croatia.
In both cases, we pay accommodation, per diems, travel expenses, and fees for guest artists and performances, but co-productions are primarily based on artistic exchange and not only on financial conditions.
Besides these activities, the Company organizes residencies and workshops in the newly-renovated Art Center, for which we provide space and per diems. This specific case is less a model, more the starting point for the Mediterranean Dance Center, which the Art Center is intended to become one day.
Hosting: As organizers of a dance festival and beneficiaries of a space in the Svetvincenat Art Center, we host works by other groups and authors from Svetvincenat, Istria. We mainly host such works during the Festival period (July) but as soon as we have established the Mediterranean Dance Centre we plan to extend our activities (residencies, workshops, hosting) across the whole year.
Services: We organize dance seminars and workshops in Svetvincenat for beginners and advanced dancers from the region; we organize conversations with authors through which ideas can be exchanged; we hold film screenings through which we introduce the audience to the art of dance; etc.
International collaboration: Besides insisting on cooperation with established artists from the fields of theater, the visual arts and so on, an important part of the Company’s work is opening up space for a new way of thinking about dance, a space for investigation that puts an emphasis not only on productions but also on the research process and dancers’ education. By continually working on the professional education of its dancers through collaboration with renowned Croatian and foreign choreographers and pedagogues, the Company is constantly improving the level of its productions, introducing them into a wider European circuit. The Company has performed at all important festivals in Croatia and at all major theaters. Abroad, the Company has taken part in important festivals and events in Germany, France, Belgium, Russia, Slovenia, Hungary, Italy, Spain, Portugal, Lithuania, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Serbia, Poland, Mexico, Egypt, South Korea…
Participation: At the Festival, we organize workshops for professional dancers and amateurs; we organize open discussions, to which everybody is invited, with choreographers participating in the festival; we organize exchange forums, book promotions, film screenings, and so on. Through these activities, we aim to reinforce dance skills, encourage team spirit, and emphasize flexibility and openness to development. These skills contribute to creating individuals who are better prepared to take part in social interaction regarding culture and specifically the art of dance, enhancing creativity by exchanging ideas and opinions, to open cultural borders, to forge and strengthen links with national, regional, and international artists, and to confirm the idea of democratic society on an international level. The local population is offered an opportunity for free artistic education through the performances we hold on the city square, for which no admittance fee is charged, and through the workshops we organize.
Gathering citizens: Although our activities are primarily artistic, citizens also profit in terms of education. Through our 12-year presence in a culturally-neglected area of Istria, we have successfully influenced society and raised generations of citizens equipped with knowledge and experience of contemporary dance.
Municipality: Our relation with the municipality in Svetvincenat is satisfactory. The local government is very open when it comes to infrastructural and practical help but cannot show the same appreciation in terms of finances, since its own financial situation is not good.
Advocacy / activism: As part of the independent dance scene, we are constantly trying to improve our situation in society and thus are involved in all actions of the assembled and united dance scene that strive to achieve this.