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Waterman ballet on Bled Island

The premiere of the Waterman ballet on 1 July 2021 marked the start of the Slovenian Presidency of the Council of the European Union. The ballet staged on Bled Island by Slovenian National Theatre Maribor, choreographed by internationally renowned choreographer Edward Clug and with original music by slovenian composer Milko Lazar was attended by representatives of the Slovenian Government and members of the College of Commissioners.

The internationally renowned choreographer Edward Clug and his permanent creative team at the Slovene National Theatre Maribor, together with composer Milko Lazar, set designer Marko Japelj and costume designer Leo Kulaš, have embarked on a new choreographic project created especially for the Slovenian Presidency of the Council of the EU.

Inspired by the theme from Slovenian mythology and France Prešeren's ballad about a water man, the author in his sincere philosophical ballet language wonders about the origin of the Slovenian identity and the "mythological" beginnings of everything European. What is the cultural heritage of a contemporary European and thereby a Slovenian? How do we fit in this community and where will our shared destiny lead us? Considering the current environmental, health and social crises, has the time come for us to look deep inside and redefine Europe?

Through his aesthetic aspirations to create a comprehensive and highly expressive work of art, Clug's contribution to the discourse about Europe will undoubtedly bring interesting insights that the European politics of the future will perhaps be compelled to consider.

Edward Clug before the Waterman ballet premiere

The premiere of the Waterman ballet being staged by the Slovenian National Theatre Maribor on Bled Island is in itself a unique theatrical awakening of the island. The central cultural event to mark the start of the Slovenian Presidency of the Council of the EU invites spectators from every corner and culture of the old continent to this sacred place to breathe in the air of our ancestors, to glimpse the future on the surface of the waters and to immerse themselves in our music, dancing together in the heart of Slovenia.

On this occasion, the old steps that lead the human spirit all the way up to the last, the ninety-ninth step, will welcome spectators to a natural amphitheatre, gently whispering in the ageold grove the verses written by France Prešeren, whose poetical inspiration still stirs the depths of our consciousness and our collective memory to this day.

Prešeren’s Waterman acts as a portal of time and space for our journey to the sacred Bled Island, extended by a round stage, the island’s very own moon. Young women and men will dance to songs of passion and be swept up in a storm of love under the magical light of a rising moon.

The Waterman ballet premiere (1. 7. 2021)

The Waterman ballet practice (27. 6. 2021)