The Theatre Institute (1961) is a specialized institution with nationwide outreach, directly subjected to the Ministry of Culture of the Slovak Republic. It conducts comprehensive research, documentation, scholarly analyses and provision of information on theatre culture in Slovakia dating back to the establishment of the first professional scene in 1920. The Institute administers the cultural heritage in all Slovak theatre genres (drama, opera, ballet, dance, puppet theatre, modern performative forms). As part of its expert activities, the Institute systematically collects, scientifically processes, protects and makes accessible collection funds (archive, museum and documentation items) about the history and present of Slovak professional theatre. It also runs a comprehensive information system about professional theatre in Slovakia. The Theatre Institute collaborates with its partner institutions in Slovakia and abroad, especially with partner institutes and museums in the V4 countries. In international cooperation, the Theatre Institute can take advantage of its membership in international non-governmental organizations ITI, ENICPA, IETM, SIBMAS and ICOM. This cooperation allows the Institute to engage in specialized international theatrological events and projects – alongside other regular activities, this allows the Theatre Institute to present Slovak theatre abroad.
Based on the decision made by the Department of Public Administration of the Ministry of the Interior of the Slovak Republic, presented in letter No. SVS-204-2002/0433 from 27 September 2002, the Theatre Institute was defined as an Archive of Special Importance. In another letter sent by the Department of Public Administration of the Ministry of the Interior of the Slovak Republic, No. SVS-204-2005/01082 from 15 July 2005, the Archives of the Theatre Institute were incorporated into the Specialized Public Archives of the Slovak Republic with an accredited section for research and development. The Cultural Heritage Department at the Ministry of Culture of the Slovak Republic recorded the Museum of the Theatre Institute on 6 March 2006 in Letter No. MK‐1227/2006‐400/4464 and registered it under No. RM 86/2006. This defined new specialized activities for the Institute. Decision No. CD-2009-41249/48235-1:11 of the Ministry of Education of the Slovak Republic, dated 9 February 2010, gave the Theatre Institute a Competence Certificate to conduct research and development.
The Theatre Institute fulfills several indispensable roles in the mapping and research of professional theatre culture in Slovakia. Its basic expertise is focused on specialized activities related to Slovak theatre culture in the country and abroad (documentation, archivation, library and museum activities, education, information and publishing work, exhibitions, presentations, etc.).
- Theatre Institute’s Archive – archivation and documentation of theatre culture; assembling, expert processing, storing and making accessible of archive, documentation, library, audio-visual and stage design funds and collections; theatre literature, theatre plays, scripts, director’s notes, periodical and non-periodical press, photographs and promotion materials, stage design and collection objects, audio and audio-visual recordings of theatre productions, recordings of theatre-related documentary films, as well as other material related to the past and present of theatre culture in Slovakia;
- expert collecting and processing of documentation about current productions in state, non-state and independent professional theatres, theatre festivals, institutions and projects;
- as part of the Specialized Public Archive, the BACH database is being filled, including a comprehensive electronic processing and describing of archive items;
- as part of the Museum of the Theatre Institute, an interconnection to the CEMUZ database of museum collections is being set up, including electronic processing of the fund of Collections of Gallery and Museum Value;
- activities of the Centre for Theatre Research, which is a platform for scholarly and research work of Slovak and international theatre researchers conducting basic historical and current research in theatre culture in Slovakia, with connections to European projects;
- informatization and digitalization of funds and collections by means of the THEATRE.SK information system and the collaboration within the National Digitalization Project – Digital Museum;
- running the etheatre.sk information and documentation on-line platform;
- annual statistical reports for the Slovak Statistical Office and the Ministry of Culture;
- publishing activities – original and translated theatrological titles, publishing periodical and non-periodical titles, distribution and presentation of book publications;
- publishing the journal kød – concretely on theatre (monthly) and its distribution,
- presentation and distribution of book publications;
- exhibition activities – exhibitions in Slovakia and abroad;
- systematic collection and assembling of library funds with a focus on theatre and art history;
- public services – making accessible documentation and archive funds, information and consultancy services, library service, clipping service, video and record library, continuous processing of bibliography in the Prospero Information Centre;
- Studio 12 – a platform for new drama and theatre;
- the Nová dráma/New Drama project – this includes a festival of the same name, book edition, and creative writing workshops;
- the Dramatically Young project – aimed at setting up an educational platform for the youngest theatre authors;
- collaboration with theatres, theatre institutions and festivals in Slovakia;
- collaboration with theatres, theatre institutions and festivals and non-governmental organizations abroad;
- analytical, consultancy, advisory and statistical activities for the establishing authority of the Ministry of Culture of the Slovak Republic;
- in addition to the central website www.theatre.sk, the administration of several other support sites which focus on priority projects: www.novadrama.sk, www.nocdivadiel.sk, www.studio12.sk