Juraj Nvota

* 1954  

  • "The Coordination Committee made the strike a success, so we did so-called outings. We distributed the tasks, for example, I went to Vrbové Square to speak, someone went to another Cooperative. In fact, the actors endowed with good pronunciation and gift of speech were used to persuade a larger number of people. But it continued, Milos Ziak, from the coordination committee in Bratislava sent me to Martin, it didn’t begin there yet, they need some encouragement. So I was sent to bring them a joyful message. And when I came to Martin, I saw such hesitation- yes or no…But when they heard the message from a friend, I used to direct quite a lot when I was a host in theater in Martin, they are more truthful. But in Bratislava, people are unafraid of the squares, we are striking in Trnava, we don’t play- they were playing in Martin. The revolution had to spread and it took a while, it wasn't from day to day. "

  • ``We were delighted. The events followed one after another so quickly, that something with which we had no experience was beginning. We kept telling ourselves that we’d have to copy the “muster” of foundation of state from others, but I wasn’t a member of the coordination committee VPN. Thus I needn’t worry about this, but nevertheless, I had problems navigating the situation. Every once and then, somebody brought a message. Jaro Filip told us- Czechs have a great minister of interior. In Slovakia, Meciar was praised, wherever he appeared, he charmed everyone. Jaro said, these two Meciar and the Czech minister, they are great. But the situation started to look different. Events kept changing and one had problems staying orientated. One day we were signing for Carnogursky, another against him, one day we were signing for Meciar, another against him… It kept changing.``

  • "At the time, the whole repertoire in heaters, everything that was done when it didn't try to please the regime, it involved some secret speech with the audience, Esperanto between the lines. When Macbeth was staged, it was clearly about Husak, and the whole Macbeth’s tyranny was totalitarian communism. When the Mandate was staged, and so on, all the plays that were staged were encrypted. We picked them only with this in mind, that we can in the second plan enable viewers to meet with an opinion, which is shared by the whole society, but it cannot express it aloud. That opinion could not be published, only communicated through this Esperanto. Every song was in the end screened by the party, every statue was checked. It was so absurd…”

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    Bratislava, 17.12.2018

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Artists should be able to feel, when tendencies, that are against the people, start to emerge within the society

Juraj Nvota was born on March 1, 1954, in Bratislava. He completed studies at the Academy of Performing Art in Bratislava. He started his professional career during normalisation in Theatre for children and youth in Trnava in 1977. He worked in Trnava during his successful period in the 80th, directing numerous plays criticising social and political events in communist Czechoslovakia. Since 1982, he has also directed in The Radosinske naivne divadlo. During the Velvet Revolution, he was part of the oppositional activities of actors in Trnava, they were the first to organize meetings in town and published reform declarations. After the fall of the regime, he continued to work in the theatre in Trnava, since 1992, he became the main director of theatre Astorka and started to lecture at the Department of directing and dramaturgy at Academy of Performing Arts in Bratislava. Since the 1990s, he also worked as a film and television director.