logop2The first Festival of monodrama and mime was held in 1973. The man who started the idea was Ljubisa Ruzic, a multifaceted theatre personality. In the team that devised the concept of the festival were the most distinguished theatrical creators: above all, one of the most meritorious and with the most initiative, a professor at the Faculty of Dramatic Arts, Ognjenka Milicevic. Many programs and proposals are part of her contribution to the development of the concept of the Festival. There was also dr Milenko Misailovic, a playwright at the National Theatre, Predrag Perovic, a critic, Branko Radivojevic, a socio-political worker, dr Branivoj Djordjevic, a professor from the Faculty of Dramatic Arts, Zivomir Jokovic, director, Marko Todorovic, actor, and Felix Pasic, a theatre critic. The director of the Festival was Mitar Mija Stefanovic from the formation until the closure of the Festival in 1992.
During all that time, Ivica Vusic worked as the technical chief. Of course, many other theatre artists, as well as public and cultural personas from Zemun and Belgrade, supported the Festival. A plethora of young theatre experts in various fields flourished and matured under the wing of the Festival.
Naturally, the National Theatre greatly supported the Festival, and the Festival was held on its stage in Zemun. A great deal of logistical
support came from the puppet theatre Pinocchio. From 1993 to 1996, the Festival of Monodrama and Mime was not held. The reasons for that one should look for in the general social, political, economic crisis in which Yugoslavia was back then, which fell apart that same year.
A group of theatre enthusiasts launched an initiative to renew the Festival in 1995. The group consisted of Borislav Balac, Ivan Bekjarev, Ljiljana Blagojevic, Ivica Klemenc, and Radomir Putnik. They were, thanks to the support of Darinka Matic Marovic, the then-rector of the University of Arts and the President of the Festival committee, able to bring the Festival back to life in 1996. Despite numerous challenges, they also managed to enhance and develop it even further, and finally introduce it to the international family of monodrama festivals and other similar festivals. Finally, they succeeded in securing enough media coverage and support.
The central working bodies of the Festival are the Festival Council which consists of the President of the Festival, the general manager of the Festival, the selector for monodrama, and the selector for mime. Since the 1996 reformation, the President of the Council has been Darinka Matic Marovic, while Borislav Balac performed the duties of the general manager. The monodrama selector was Ivan Bekjarev, and the mime selector was Ivica Klemenc.
The founder of the Festival, the City Assembly of Zemun, named new members in the Council in 2011. Hence, from that year until 2015, the general manager of the Festival was Lada Mirkov, the President of the Council was Bratislav Petkovic, and the selector was dr Milovan Zdravkovic. By decision of the City Assembly of Zemun, new members of the Council and the General Manager of the Festival were inducted in 2015. The new head of the Council would be the National Theatre actor Predrag Miletic. At the same time, other members would be Radomir Putnik, Rada Djuricin, Igor Bojovic, Rastko Jankovic, Stevan Rodic, and Vanja Stanivuk. Borislav Barac was named the General Manager of the Festival.
The most notable actors from the past and modern-day Yugoslavia participated in the monodrama section of the program. Among them were: Rade Serbedzija, Ljuba Tadic, Maja Dimitrijevic, Mira Banjac, Rada Djuricin, Lazar Ristovski, Pero Kvrgic, Zijah Sokolovic, Petar Kralj, Ljiljana Blagojevic, Josip Pejakovic, Ruzica Sokic, Milos Zutic, Milena Dravic, and many others. When it comes to pantomimists, artists from all over the world performed here. Still, some notable mentions are Ladislav Fialka, Erdinç Dinçer, Stewart Fischer, Sami Molho, Andres Valdes, Fred Curchack, the International School of Marcel Marceau, Jango Edwards, Roberto Escobar, Adam Darius, Peter Weisbrod, Anne Dennis, Yves Lebreton, Wolfgang Neuhausen Nemo, Marie-Paule and Philippe Goudard, Andrey Alexander, and many others.