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Slaughterhouse Five (Part 1)

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Uploaded on Jan 15, 2008

Kurt Vonnegut's legendary anti-war book staged this summer in the Serbian city of Užice during Open Arc Theatre Festival.
A coproduction of SET (Studio for Electronic Theatre), Academica, Amsterdam Cyber Theatre, PVC, National Theatre Užice.
Fahrudin Salihbegovic Nuno, Tatjana Ljujic, Vladimir Bojovic, Ranka Delic, Boris Butorac, Matthias Oostrik, Paul Verity Smith, Janos Bus, Vahidin Prelic, Andrijana Lubina, Mirjana Radovic, Imer Mushkolaj, Danilo Stojic, Marko Tesovic, Milojko Knezevic, Milena Radomirovic Comi, Aleksandar Djeric
On 22nd April 1999, during the notorious war between NATO and Serbia, the Serbian city of Užice suffered the loss of its main post office. The building designed to connect people and help them communicate from afar disappeared in almost an instant. No other building in the neighbourhood was knocked down, nobody was hurt or died, nothing else changed -- only the post miraculously vanished, as in a fairy tale. Instead of the post office, the citizens of Užice beheld the appearance of an empty space.
In his legendary book The Empty Space, Peter Brook claims that for theater to take place it is enough to have 'a man [who] walks across [the] empty space whilst someone else is watching him'. I would go further and argue that in this empty space, the drama of human existence is revealed and that the search for space is an essential activity of the theatre maker.
Likewise, in our second quest to reveal the great theatrical potential of the public spaces of the town of Užice, Amsterdam Cyber Theatre have decided to explore its most famous empty space where layers of meanings, riddles, and prophecies wait to be discovered and examined in order to serve the well-being of the community of the future.
Sadly, the empty space of Užice's post office is not the only empty space created in recent wars in the former Yugoslavia. Many other buildings disappeared, and many homes perished, leaving only the memories of the times when these empty spaces were anything but empty.
With this project we wished to pay tribute to all these empty spaces and raise awareness of their existence, not only in the sense of physical emptiness in the wounded cities and villages in the Balkans but more importantly about the emptiness in the souls of their former inhabitants.
Fahrudin Nuno Salihbegovic, Amsterdam Cyber Theatre

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