Ľubomír Vajdička (1944, Trenčín)

Upon graduation from the college of electrical engineering in Bratislava, Mr Vajdička went on to pursue theatre studies at the Academy of Performing Arts in Bratislava (1963 – 1968). Frome early on he was drawn to stage directing, acquiring his first experience in amateur company OB Nivy. The ensemble that brought together university students was to receive a number of awards. Mr Vajdička continued working with amateurs after he arrived in the city of Martin, where he worked, to much acclaim, with the ensemble in the village of Dubové by the spa town Turčianske Teplice. Between 1968 and 1983 he was staff stage director at the Slovak National Uprising Theatre in Martin (today known as the Slovak Chamber Theatre). He staged there a range of inimitable productions particularly from among the Slovak and Russian classical works. Together with the set designers Jozef Ciller and Juraj Fábry the team presented a number of concepts in actin set design, a phenomenon of the 1970s and 1980s that was marked by new opportunities of production approach. It brought a deviation from the classical peep-hole theatre, excessive accent on visual art, illusion and complex set solution. Quite on the contrary, the set design worked with minimum number of props, many of which bore multiple meanings and purposes.

The period of 1981 – 1984 saw Mr Vajdička at the National Theatre in Prague and that of 1983 – 2010 at the Slovak National Theatre in Bratislava. He was regular guest in a number of theatres in the Czech Republic and Slovakia (such as the National Theatre Prague and Brno, National Moravian–Silesian Theatre Ostrava, Theatre Thália and State Theatre in Košice, The Pavol Országh Hviezdoslav City Theatre in Bratislava, The Andrej Bagar Theatre in Nitra). Mr Vajdička also worked, as screen director, for the television (the dedicated Monday series of such productions as Jozef Gregor Tajovský´s New Life, 1973; Božena Slančíková – Timrava´s and Ondrej Šulaj´s The Ťapáks, 1977; V. Shukshin: The Courting), 1973; Francis Scott Fitzgerald: Gretchen’s Forty Winks, 1988; Guy de Maupassant: The Prize, 1990). At the Slovak National Theatre, in collaboration with the playwright and dramaturge Peter Pavlac, he staged a number of productions of some of the foremost Slovak prose (B. Slančíková-Timrava: A Great Deal of Luck, 2003; Martin Kukučín: The House on the Hillside, 2006; Ivan Horváth: The Jurga Brothers, 2013). At the Slovak Chamber Theatre in Martin the two staged the dramatisation of Ján Rozner´s memoir Seven Days to the Funeral (2012). Since 1990 Mr Vajdička is also lecturer at the Theatre Faculty of the Academy of Performing Arts. He is author of a number of translations of plays from Russian, French and German (such as Eugene Ionesco: The Bald Soprano, G. Feydeau: A Flea in Her Hair, E. Ionesco: The Chairs, I. Turgenev: A Month in the Country, Anton Chekhov: Three Sisters, Nikolai Gogol: The Gamblers). Mr Vajdička is laureate of two DOSKY Awards for Best Production in Season: The Chairs (1999, SND) and Seven Days to the Funeral (2012, SKD Martin).

Ľubomír Vajdička´s signature style:

Based on the masters of his staged works, one identifies three fundamental lines in Mr Vajdička´s directorial work: Russian, Slovak and world classics. His tendency towards Slovak and Russian classical stage plays was already discernible as early as during his tenure in Martin.  His objective distance and thorough text analysis enabled him to overcome the established orthodox approach to classical texts, schemes and staging methods. In his own words, he understands contemporary interpretation of the classics as utter move from the author, or the move of the meaning within the structural axis of the authors text.  

This approach enabled him to use the classics to express his view of the past, whilst seeking analogy with the presence (Ján Palárik: Incognito, 1971, 1979; Anton Chekhov: Ivanov, 1976; Ján Chalupka: Kocúrkovo, 1978; Anton Chekhov: Cherry Orchard, 1979; Ján Hollý: Kubo, 1981; Maxim Gorki:  Barbarians, 1982; Anton Ostrovski: The Forest, 1982). Mr Vajdička was unafraid to face polemically earlier interpretations and to strip the classics of sentimentalism, romanticism, idealisation, the realism introduced by Borodáč and puritanism of Zachar. He didn’t shy away from sarcasm and farce (The Foundling, 1973; Just Another Cup of Tea, 1974, 1976, 1992; Kocúrkovo or If We Could but Stop Living in Shame, 1978; The Ťapáks,1975; Kubo, 1981). Together with the set designers Jozef Ciller and Juraj Fábry he approached set design not as illustration, atmosphere or description of the context, but as a function of storyline, conflict and situation.

After joining the Slovak National Theatre, he added the world classics in the focus of interest, whilst applying the same staging method (A. Strindberg: Miss Julie, 1986; Euripides: Medea, 1985; H. Ibsen: An Enemy of the People, 1989; Ján Uličiansky: Allergy, 1995; E. Ionesco: The Chairs, 1999; L. Pirandello: Right You Are, If You Think You Are, 1993, L. Ballek, O. Šulaj: The Helper, 2000; Sofokles: Oedipus the King, 2001; M. McDonagh: The Pillowman, 2004).

Ľubomír Vajdička is an author who pays due respect to stage text; he refrains from any violent transformation, quite on the contrary, he uses subtle epistemology moves to offer a new textual interpretation, whilst being essentially interested in human predicament. In interpretation of classical works he is unafraid of discovering new, hitherto unknown epistemological positions and associations. Factual, yet full-fleshed realism, precise thought concept, sensitive work with actors, sense of metaphor and symbolism, multi-level art elements are the main characteristics of Vajdička’s direction.

 

A list of directorial works – productions:

1968 / The Theatre of Slovak National Uprising, Martin / Eugène Labiche: An Italian Straw Hat

1968 / The Theatre of Slovak National Uprising, Martin / Ivan Stodola: Marína Havranová

1969 / The Theatre of Slovak National Uprising, Martin / Heinrich von Kleist: The Broken Jug

1969 / The Theatre of Slovak National Uprising, Martin / Robert Bolt: A Man for All Seasons

1969 / The Theatre of Slovak National Uprising, Martin / Nikolaj Gogol: The Gamblers

1970 / The Theatre of Slovak National Uprising, Martin / Anton Chekhov: Swan Song, The Bear, The Jubilee

1971 / The Theatre of Slovak National Uprising, Martin / Ján Palárik: Incognito

1971 / The Theatre of Slovak National Uprising, Martin / Egon Rannet: The Poachers

1971 / The Theatre of Slovak National Uprising, Martin / Ion Luca Caragiale: Only During A Carnival

1972 / The Theatre of Slovak National Uprising, Martin / Alexander Ostrovski: Enough Stupidity in Every Wise Man

1972 / The Theatre of Slovak National Uprising, Martin / Leonid Leonov: Golden Carriage

1973 / The Theatre of Slovak National Uprising, Martin / Ben Jonson: The Alchemyst

1973 / The Theatre of Slovak National Uprising, Martin / Jonáš Záborský: The Foundling

1973 / The Theatre of Slovak National Uprising, Martin / Émile Verhaeren: Philip II

1974 / The Theatre of Slovak National Uprising, Martin / Karel Čapek: The Robber

1974 / Puppet Theatre Žilina/ Ľubomír Vajdička: Margita and Besná

1974 / The Theatre of Slovak National Uprising, Martin / Ivan Stodola: Tea for Two

1974/ Teatr Nikola Vapcarov Blagoevgrad, Bulgaria/ Ivan  Bukovčan: Snyag nad kedara

1975 / The Theatre of Slovak National Uprising, Martin / Štefan Králik: Rebel

1975 / The Theatre of Slovak National Uprising, Martin / Fiodor Michajlovič Dostojevskij: Idiot

1975 / The Theatre of Slovak National Uprising, Martin / Hans Christian Andersen: The Tinderbox

1975 / The Theatre of Slovak National Uprising, Martin / Božena Slančíková-Timrava, Ondrej Šulaj: The Ťapáks

1976 / The Theatre Nová scéna, Bratislava / Ivan Stodola: Tea for Two

1976 / The Theatre of Slovak National Uprising, Martin / Osvald Zahradník: A Sonatina for the Peacock

1976 / The Theatre of Slovak National Uprising, Martin / Anton Pavlovič Čechov: Ivanov

1976 / Theatre of E. F. Burian, Prague / William Shakespeare: Falstaff and the Prince Jindra

1977 / The Theatre of Slovak National Uprising, Martin / Peter Kováčik: Under the Green Tree

1977 / The Theatre of Slovak National Uprising, Martin / Friedrich Johann Christoph Schiller: Intrigue and Love

1977 / Regional Puppet Theatre in Banská Bystrica / František Hubín: Beauty and the Beast

1978 / The Theatre of Slovak National Uprising, Martin / Ján Chalupka: Kocúrkovo or If We Could but Stop Living in Shame

1978 / The Theatre of Slovak National Uprising, Martin / William Shakespeare: As You Like It and Twelfth Night

1978 / The Theatre of Slovak National Uprising, Martin / George Bernard Shaw: The Devil’s Disciple

1979 / Theatre Nová scéna, Bratislava / Ján Palárik: Incognito

1979 / The Theatre of Slovak National Uprising, Martin / Stanislav Stratiev: Velour Jacket

1979 / The Theatre of Slovak National Uprising, Martin / Peter Ševčovič: The Group

1979 / Regional Puppet Theatre in Banská Bystrica / Carlo Gozzi: King Stag

1979 / The Theatre of Slovak National Uprising, Martin / Anton Chekhov: Cherry Orchard

1980 / Slovak National Theatre, Bratislava / Ivan Turgenev: A Month in the Country

1980 / The Theatre of Slovak National Uprising, Martin / Ladislav Ballek, Ondrej Šulaj: The Helper

1980 / The Theatre of Slovak National Uprising, Martin / Konstantin Iliev:  A Flower for Draginko

1981 / National Theatre, Prague / Maxim Gorkij: Summer Guests

1981 / The Theatre of Slovak National Uprising, Martin / Jozef Hollý: Kubo

1981 / The Theatre of Slovak National Uprising, Martin/ Alexander Vampilev: Last Summer in Chulimsk

1982 / National Theatre, Prague / Friedrich Johann Christoph Schiller: Inrigue and Love

1982 / The Theatre of Slovak National Uprising, Martin / Alexander Ostrovski: The Forest

1982 / The Theatre of Slovak National Uprising, Martin / Osvald Zahradník: The Mistake of Surgeon Moresseni

1982 / The Theatre of Slovak National Uprising, Martin / Gennadi Mamlin: Long Live Dinosaurs!

1982 / The Theatre of Slovak National Uprising, Martin / Maxim Gorki: The Barbarians

1983 / National Theatre, Prague / Ivan Stodola: The Shepherd’s Wife

1983 / The Theatre of Slovak National Uprising, Martin / Oldřich Daněk: A Message about the Surgery of City N.

1983 / Slovak National Theatre, Bratislava / Ladislav Obuch: Lady of the Sea

1984 / National Theatre, Prague / Anton Chekhov: Cherry Orchard

1984 / Slovak National Theatre, Bratislava / Ján Solovič: The Bell  without a Temple

1984 / Slovak National Theatre, Bratislava / Anton Chekhov: Three Sisters

1984 / Slovak National Theatre, Bratislava / Alexander Ostrovski: A Profitable Job

1985 / Slovak National Theatre, Bratislava / Ján Solovič: Peter and Paul

1985 / Slovak National Theatre, Bratislava / Euripides: Medea

1986 / National Theatre, Prague / Moliére: Misanthrope

1986 / Theatre Studio, APA, Bratislava / Luca Ion Caragiale: A Lost Letter

1986 / Theatre Studio, APA, Bratislava/ Denis Diderot, Milan Kundera: Jacques the Fatalist

1986 / Slovak National Theatre, Bratislava / Ivan Stodola: Jožko Púčik and His Career

1986 / Slovak National Theatre, Bratislava / August Strindberg: Miss Julie

1986 / agency production, Praha/ Peter Shaffer: Black Comedy

1987 / Slovak National Theatre, Bratislava / Ján Solovič: A Very Daring Project

1987 / Slovak National Theatre, Bratislava / Maxim Gorki: Summer Guests

1988 / Slovak National Theatre, Bratislava / Carlo Goldoni: Plays about Summerhouse

1989 / Slovak National Theatre, Bratislava / Henrik Ibsen: An Enemy of the People

1990 / Slovak National Theatre, Bratislava / Georges Feydeau: A Flea in Her Ear

1990 / Theatre Studio, APA, Bratislava / Peter Weiss: Persecution and Assassination of Jean-Paul Marat

1990 / Slovak National Theatre, Bratislava / Henrik Ibsen: The Wild Duck

1991 / Theatre Studio, APA, Bratislava / Carlo Gozzi: King Stag

1991 / Slovak National Theatre, Bratislava / Peter Shaffer: Lettice and Lovage

1992 / Slovak National Theatre, Bratislava / Ivan Stodola: Tea for Two

1993 / National Theatre, Prague / Jean Racine: Britannicus

1993 / Slovak National Theatre, Bratislava / Luigi Pirandello: Right You Are, If You Think You Are

1993 / Slovak National Theatre, Bratislava / Jozef Cíger Hronský, Ľubomír Vajdička: Andreas Búr Majster

1993 / Slovak National Theatre, Bratislava / Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart: The Impressario / La finta giardiniera

1994 / Slovak National Theatre, Bratislava / Pierre Carlet de Chamblain de Marivaux: Fake Servant or Feigned Inconstancy

1994 / Slovak National Theatre, Bratislava / William Shakespeare: Midsummer Night’s Dream

1995 / Slovak National Theatre, Bratislava / Peter Karvaš: Patriots from the City of Yo hence A Kingdom for the Killer

1995 / Slovak National Theatre, Bratislava / Ján Uličiansky: Allergy

1995 / Studio L+S, Bratislava / Donald Churchill: The Decorator

1996 / Slovak National Theatre, Bratislava / Martin Sherman: When She Danced

1996 / Slovak National Theatre, Bratislava / Július Barč-Ivan: Greasy Pot

1997 / Slovak National Theatre, Bratislava / Nikolai Gogol: Marriage

1997 / Slovak National Theatre, Bratislava / Alfred de Musset: Lorenzaccio

1997 / State Puppet Theatre in Bratislava / Jaroslav Kvapil: Princess Dandelion

1998 / National Theatre, Prague / Henrik Ibsen: John Gabriel Borkman

1998 / Slovak National Theatre, Bratislava / Luigi Pirandello: Six Characters in Search of an Author

1998 / Slovak National Theatre, Bratislava / Ion Luca Caragiale: A Lost Letter

1998 / Theatre WEST, Bratislava / Robert Thomas: The Mandarin Room

1998 / State Puppet Theatre in Bratislava / Josef Kainar: Goldilocks

1999 / Slovak National Theatre, Bratislava / Anton Chekhov: The Seagull

1999 / Slovak National Theatre, Bratislava / Eugéne Ionesco: The Chairs

2000 / Slovak National Theatre, Bratislava / Ladislav Ballek, Ondrej Šulaj: The Helper

2000 / National Theatre, Prague / Friedrich Schiller: Mary Stuart

2001 / Slovak National Theatre, Bratislava / Steve Martin: Picasso at the Lapin Agile

2001 / National Theatre Brno / Per Olov Enquist: The Image Makers

2001 / Theatre WEST, Bratislava / Luigi Lunari: Three on the Swing

2001 / Slovak National Theatre, Bratislava / Sophocle: Oedipus the King

2002 / The Radek Brzobohatý Theatre, Prague / Paula Vogel: The Oldest Profession

2002 / Theatre WEST, Bratislava / Neil Simon: Last of the Red Hot Lovers

2002 / Slovak Chamber Theatre Martin / Paula Vogel: The Oldest Profession

2003 / National Theatre Brno / Martin McDonagh: The Lonesome West

2003 / Slovak National Theatre, Bratislava / Božena Slančíková-Timrava: A Great Deal of Luck

2004 / Slovak National Theatre, Bratislava / John Murell: Memoir: A Play about Sarah Bernhardt’s Last Summer

2004 / Slovak National Theatre, Bratislava / Roman Olekšák: Silence / Leopold Lahola, Peter Pavlac: Speaking to an Enemy

2004 / Slovak National Theatre, Bratislava / Martin McDonagh: The Pillowman

2005 / Slovak National Theatre, Bratislava / Georges Feydeau: Cat Among the Pigeons

2005 / Slovak National Theatre, Bratislava / Ingvar Ambjornsen: Praise to Madness or Elling and Kjell Bjarne

2005 / National Theatre Brno / Georges Feydeau: From Marriage to Divorce

2006 / Slovak National Theatre, Bratislava / Victor Haim: La valse du hazard

2007 / The Andrej Bagar Theatre in Nitra / Jozef Gregor Tajovský: Estates – Confusions

2007 / National Moravian–Silesian Theatre Ostrava, Ostrava / Anton Chekhov: The Seagull

2008 / Slovak National Theatre, Bratislava / Martin Kukučín, Peter Pavlac: The House on the Hillside

2008 / National Moravian–Silesian Theatre Ostrava / Ira Levin: Death Trap

2008 / The Andrej Bagar Theatre in Nitra / Michael Frayn: Noises off!

2009 / Slovak National Theatre, Bratislava / Jean Anouilh: The Waltz of the Toreadors

2009 / The Andrej Bagar Theatre in Nitra / Alan Ayckbourn: Season’s Greetings

2010 / Slovak National Theatre, Bratislava / Nikolai Gogol: The Gamblers

2011 / Arteatro, Bratislava / David Mamet: A Life in the Theatre

2011 / The Ján Palárik Theatre in Trnava / Eugéne Labiche: La station Champbaudet

2011 / Theatre Nová scéna, Bratislava / Brandon Thomas: Charley’s Aunt

2011 / State Theatre Košice / Jean Anouilh: Bye, Bye Birdie

2012 / The Andrej Bagar Theatre in Nitra / Jane Austen: Pride and Prejudice

2012 / Slovak Chamber Theatre Martin / Ján Rozner, Peter Pavlac: Seven Days to the Funeral

2012 / Theatre Thália, Košice / Yasmina Reza: Art

2013 / The Andrej Bagar Theatre in Nitra / Eugene Ionesco: The Bald Soprano

2013 / Slovak National Theatre, Bratislava / Ivan Horváth, Peter Pavlac: The Jurga Brothers

2013 / State Theatre Košice / William Shakespeare: Macbeth

2014 / Slovak National Theatre, Bratislava / Johann Nepomuk Nestroy: Mr Mimo

2014 / The Jonáš Záborský Theatre, Prešov / Alexander Ostrovsky: It’s Not All Shrovetide for the Cat

2014 / Theatre Thália Színház, Košice / Ferenc Molnár: Liliom

2015 / Academy of Performing Arts in Bratislava / Georges Feydeau: Redillon

2015 / Slovak Chamber Theatre Martin / José López Rubio: The Dead See It Differently

2015 / City Theatre Žilina / Maxim Gorki: The Counterfeit Coin

2016 / The Pavol Országh Hviezdoslav City Theatre, Bratislava / Florian Zeller: The Truth

2016 / The Spiš Theatre Spišská Nová Ves / Alexander Ostrovsky: Late Love

2017 / City Theatre Žilina / David Gieselmann: The Pigeons

2017 / The Spiš Theatre Spišská Nová Ves / Georges Feydeau: A Taylor for Ladies or Made to Measure

2018 / agency production / Alan Ayckbourn: I Will Introduce You to Dad

2018 / State Theatre Košice / Ladislav Stroupežnický: Our Swaggerers

2019/ City Theatre Zlín/ Arthur Miller: Death of A Salesman

 

Awards:

2000 / DOSKY for Best Production and Best Director for Eugene Ionesco: The Chairs, SND

2012 / DOSKY for Best Production Ján Rozner / Peter Pavlac: Seven Days to the Funeral, SKD Martin

 

Foreign languages: Russian, German, passively: French, English. Bulgarian, Polish

Contact: lubomir.vajdicka@gmail.com

 

 

Videos from productions:

THE CHAIRS, 1999

archive of the Slovak National Theatre, Bratislava

 

SEVEN DAYS TO THE FUNERAL, 2012

archive of the Slovak Chamber Theatre Martin

 

MACBETH, 2013

archive of the State Theatre Košice

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