Radio play Festival Ljubljana: Listening Together

Festival of radio plays for babies and toddlers

Radio Slovenia organized a three-day festival of radio plays, titled Listening Together, in the framework of the B-AIR international project and at the 60th anniversary of the broadcasting of the Third Program of Radio Slovenia – the program ARS.

The festival of radio plays for babies, toddlers, parents and all lovers of sound art began on Sunday, 26 March 2023, on the frequencies of Radio Slovenia. During the second festival day, Monday 27 March 2023, youngest audiences were listening to radio plays in kindergartens across Slovenia. The festival concluded on Tuesday, 28 March 2023, with a day-long schedule – artistic as well as expert content – in the Old Power Station on Slomškova street 18 in Ljubljana. On Tuesday, between 10.00 and 20.00 hours, a radio play listening series was run in the venue, with a soundwalk, a sound installation, a workshop, and round table discussions. The last day is being created in cooperation with Bobri, the Ljubljana festival of culture and art education.

The first festival day, on Sunday 26 March 2023, took place on the airways of Radio Slovenia. Anamarija Štukelj Cusma is hosting the program. The second festival day, on Monday 27 March 2023, ran in kindergartens across Slovenia.

Listening Together - Festival Programme

Welcoming thoughts at the start of the festival by Ingrid Kovač Brus, chief editor of Ars Program radio, and reflections on the importance of the radio play on Radio Slovenia by Alen Jelen, chief editor of the fiction program.

Conversation with set designer, architect and sound artist Irena Pivka and an excerpt from the radio play Chitter-Chatter, which she created together with composer Brane Zorman. A talk with the creators of the radio play Musical Kitchen, librettist Tajda Lipicer and composer Alenja Pivko Kneževič.

More on the radio play Chitter-Chatter can be found here.

More on the radio play Musical Kitchen can be found here.

Conversation with Gregor Pirš, editor of the serious music editorial board, Saška Rakef, directress and head of the B-Air project, and Dr Katarina Kompan Erzar, psychologist and psychotherapist. About the B-Air project and the process of creating Sea, a radio play for babies and toddlers.

More on the radio play Sea can be found here.

Directress Ana Krauthaker cooperated as project designer and mentor with children of the Kamnik Center of Education, Rehabilitation and Training Cirius. With her coworkers Rudi Pančur, Darja Hlavka Godina, Sonja Strenar, and Maja Poljanšek, alongside with five children, they created the Sound Self-Portraits ranging across a variety of genres where kids Nika Lipuš, Melani Pyvovar, Klara Senica, Nail Perviz, and Gal Kordič were exploring their ideas and impressions on the "sound expression of the self".

In her forty years of activity, directress Irena Glonar has directed a great number of children's and drama radio plays of domestic and foreign authors, music, and literary broadcasts. She wrote two radio plays and adapted 27, while directing 270. Sound artist Jure Culiberg combines his electrotechnical knowledge with music education, and has engaged creatively to an extensive degree precisely in the production of radio plays, having co-created 556.

The history of the radio play in Slovenia is discussed in depth by Vima Štritof, dramatist at the editorial of the fiction program of Radio Slovenia.

The Festival of Radio Plays for Babies and Toddlers is rounded out on-air by a talk about sound and the commons, about the importance of shared listening and the specific forms of community fostered and encouraged by the radio medium. Our featured guest is prof. dr. Rajko Muršič.

Round Table – Contemplations on Creating Art for Children

The theme of the round table within the Festival of Radio Plays was a reflection on the many possibilities that creating for young people opens up for artists. This responsible, demanding and complex work is also an extraordinary space of creative freedom. While adults' perception of art is influenced by culture for example, toddlers are much more free and unencumbered. Creating for them can therefore also be an opportunity to develop our sensitivity and curiosity. How to invite the little ones into art, and how to think about the relevant spaces and dramaturgies of art events was discussed by storyteller Špela Frlic, the head and artistic director of the Maribor Puppet Theatre, dramaturgist Katarina Klančnik Kocutar, directress Irena Glonar, film educator Petra Slatinšek, director Klemen Markovčič, and prof. dr. Robi Kroflič.

Round table – Listening, Reading, Watching, Writing. Together

In the framework of the expert program of the Festival of Radio Plays for Babies and Toddlers, experts and creators in the fields of radio drama, literature, theatre, film, and dance explored the sphere of reflection on the meaning of art, and the art of contact, starting from the cradle.

They discussed the impact of these notions on child development, the social circle, secure attachment, and the role played by art in the field of the commons and the community. Why listen, read, watch, dance – together?

With us were: philosopher, dramatist and editor Pia Brezavšček, producer and curator Petra Hazabent, producer Mojca Jug, psychologist and psychotherapist Dr. Katarina Kompan Erzar, ethnologist and cultural anthropologist Dr. Rajko Muršič, psychologist, editor of the Editorial Office of Children's and Youth Programming at Television Slovenia Martina Peštaj, MA, and neuropediatrician, head physician Igor Mihael Ravnik, M.D.

Being Heard Through Listening

Lecture and workshop on listening together

A presentation of radio fairy tales and exploration of the rich world that opens up to us through sound and music content. The magical world of radio fairy tales and radio plays is also a space of relationship between parents and children.

For the child, and for us adults as well, it is essential to be heard, to have someone hear out our gentlest impulses, our inner world, our desires and longings, and respond to them so that we can hear it in turn. But it is not so easy; listening is in fact a real art we learn throughout our lives. How can we really focus on listening in our relationship with the child, how can we enable the child to really listen? What to look out for, how to tone down all distractions? This is a skill that grows within relationships and is shaped through shared listening, from the first moments of life onward.

As part of the shared listening in Slovenian kindergartens, Radio Slovenia, in cooperation with experts, has published a leaflet called The richness of the sound environment for the youngest children, explaining why the kind of sound and music surrounding preschool children is essential.