Goran Vojnović

The Fig Tree

World premiere of stage adaptation


Luka Martin Škof

  • Adapted by
    Simona Hamer
  • Adapted for stage
    Luka Martin Škof in igralci
  • Dramaturg
    Darja Dominkuš
  • Set designer and author of video
    Miha Knific
  • Costume designer
    Urška Recer
  • Composer, selector of music, arranger, and vocal coach
    Ivan Mijačević
  • Light Designer
    Metod Novak
  • Language consultant
    Tatjana Stanič
  • Speech Coach for Bosnian, Croatian and Serbian
    Benjamin Krnetić


Cast of the video projection
Saša Tabaković Domen
Sabina Kogovšek Jera
Eva Jesenovec Tadeja
Luka Martin Škof Undertaker
Veronika Drolc Ester Aljehin

The Fig Tree, the third in a series of highly acclaimed and award-winning novels by Goran Vojnović, deals with a wide range of topics that offer a comprehensive insight into the historical and social life circumstances of several generations of families living in the culturally and politically volatile Balkans. The leitmotif and trigger of the story is loss. Following his grandfather’s death and the suspicion of suicide, Jadran feels the need for a thorough research of his family history to make sense and re-evaluate his memories and his benign present. The novel, written in a strikingly rich language ranging from the juicy Yugoslav vocabulary to almost philosophical and poetic melancholy qualities – brings to light Safet who was unlawfully erased from the register of permanent residents of Slovenia, Jana’s dementia, Aleksandar and his struggling with the loss of his wife, Vesna’s coming to terms with her husband’s sudden departure, Jadran’s conformism and lost ideals, Anja’s privileged family pedigree, etc. The driving force charging the fragmentary structure – with many leaps in time and space stretching geographically all the way to Egypt and to the period before the Second World War – is love. The Fig Tree is therefore also a story of (love) relationships, inherited fear and yearning.
The main character, Jadran Dizdar, tries to makes sense of the (voluntary) departures of the people he loves by reconsidering and filling in the gaps in his family memory base. Due to the feeling of alienation, placed in his cradle, so to speak, he tries to formulate his identity by words as well. This kind of »manipulation«, presented by the first-person narrator of the novel, is extremely powerful and effective for the staging as well. The skeleton of the production arises from the exploration of the principles of narration and the subjective view connecting dialogue scenes and monologues. The stage adaptation adheres to the author’s associative logic of sequence of scenes, while organizing and making new sense of them. The key question of the novel about identity and the parts we play (in front of others and in front of ourselves) comes to life on stage in all its complexity and metaphorics.
Simona Hamer



Opening night

13 March 2021 Main Stage

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