Tonight the 67th edition of the Dubrovnik Summer Festival officially comes to an end with the closing ceremonies, and it was yet another successful conclusion to the numerous events that take place every summer from July 10th to August 25th. I've personally never been to Dubrovnik to check this summer festival out, yet. During my last tour along the coast I was in Split for a few days which is only about a 4 hour ride away, and was going to go for even just the one day, but I was on a tight schedule and couldn't squeeze it in. It's still on my list though because it'll still be around for quite some time anyway. Also the cool thing is, as just one example, if you decided to watch one of the outdoor plays/theatre groups that even come from Germany, Poland, Switzerland, Czechia, Italy, Hungary, Paris, London and elsewhere perform, it's good to know that all the restaurants, bars, pubs and cafes are still all open with late hours so you can still go for drinks afterwards, or before, whatever.
Dubrovnik has a rich, eventful and interesting history, playing an important role in Croatian literature, culture, arts and is also a UNESCO World Heritage Site. The Croatian version name of Dubrovnik comes from the very dense forest of oak trees called Dubrava that used to surround the old town in the middle ages. During the times of the medieval Croatian Kingdom, King Michael Krešimir II (reign 949-969) and King Stephen Držislav (reign 969–997) and their powerful Bans/Viceroys Pribina and Godemir, Croatian navy ships were known to have frequently sailed from and porting at Dubrovnik, as they were in conflict with the fleets of Saracens and Muslim Arabs attempting to cross and invade for women and children sex slaves and dancers from the Italian peninsula of Gargano in 968-969. Croatian King Stjepan I in 1050 made a land grant along the coast that extended the boundaries of Dubrovnik to Zaton, with economic annd peace treaties following. Dubrovnik nobles and citizenry in the 13th-14th century defended against Serb attacks and later from a growing colonial Venetian presence in the Adriatic (but they paid tribute to the common Croato-Hungarian state during the reigns of Croatian Bans/Viceroys and other aristocratic high officer nobles...Frankopan, Hrvatinić, Kačić, Lacković, Kurjaković, Karlović, Gusić, Šubić, Zrinski et al), with the final fall of the Dubrovnik Republic came the arrival of Napoleon's army, then decades of Austrian rule, then once again part of the Croatian Triune Kingdom. (ie; the free royal and historical Croatian lands in the 19th century united, even if still administratively a part of the larger Austro-Hungarian Empire), finally again in the 20th-21st century, and especially after the unsuccessful 7 month Seige of Dubrovnik and it's civilians in 1991 by combined Serb-Yugoslav forces, today it is back once again as a center of arts, culture and a view to the past as a part of an independent and free Croatia.
Probably many people have never heard of this annual summer long festival so that's why I'm doing ths one, there's just too many events and happenings to cover though so this is just basically a repost from the 63rd edition a few years ago, You can click onto the links, Google around or just visit the official website to find out more information...
*repost from 2013
There's lots of happenings that go on every summer in Dubrovnik, various music festivals, arts and film festivals. The six week long "Dubrovnik Summer Festival" is the one that has been grabbing peoples attention the most over the years. Enough so that even many distinguished high profile people have been reserving their seats and hotel rooms to enjoy the festivities, artists, musicians, dancers or even just coming for the awesome scenery, beaches, history, restaurants, boating etc. More than 70 open-air venues in the Gothic and Renaissance-Baroque city of Dubrovnik present a a rich programme of not only classical music, but also numerous theatre, ballet, opera, plays, open air cinemas, dance and other performances during July and August every summer.
The idea of founding the Dubrovnik Summer Festival since it's beginning was to harmonize the renaissance and baroque atmosphere of Dubrovnik and the eternal living spirit of drama and music, the intellectual way of life and living creative tradition, which has played a major part in Croatian cultural and scholarly history through the centuries, especially in theatre and literature. Many great names and works continually kept it in touch with contemporary currents of not only Zagreb, Split, Osijek, Zadar, Rijeka and the rest of Croatia through the centuries, but extending to central and western Europe also.
It's only the 63rd edition of this festival, but the histories involved in the production of the various events reach back centuries. Dubrovnik is the birthplace of Ivan Gundulic, who was a major figure of the rich literary tradition of the Croatian Baroque in Dubrovnik and Croatian-Dalmatia. He's also an important part of the festival itself, as his famous poem "Dubravka" is used on opening night to officially start the festival. This 63rd edition starts up in a month. More info at the links or at the official website at www.dubrovnik-festival.hr.
www.dubrovnik-festival.hr (1997-2013 archive)
Each summer, more than 2000 dancers, actors, musicians, writers and artists flock to the city of Dubrovnik to indulge the art-loving world in over 70 performances at the Dubrovnik Summer Festival. Also known as the Dubrovnik Summer Games, the main events include theatre, dance and folklore, showcased in six weeks of culture and performance.
Since 1950, the charming and whimsical city of Dubrovnik has set a beautiful backdrop to the numerous world-renowned exhibitions. An element in its own right, the city boasts performances in the streets, arenas and plazas for audiences to enjoy the festival in the evening summer air. This combination of setting and talent is precisely what makes the festival Croatia’s premier cultural event and attracts international attention and eager guests to the city.
The festival season hosts a wide range of events from classical ballets and operas to film exhibitions and poetry readings for a lineup that is sure to satisfy every artistic craving. Spectators may be entertained at the theatre by the Festival Drama Ensemble of famous Croatian actors, or be captivated by the Lindo group performing traditional folk dances from Croatian villages.
Also not to be missed are the classical music performances held in the Ducal Palace atrium, known for its acoustics and the world-famous composers and orchestras it attracts each season. Ensconced in ancient city walls, curious visitors and elite artists are together swept up in the inspiration and romanticism of the Dubrovnik Summer Festival and its featured exhibitions.
Take a walk atop the 2km circuit of the medieval city walls to get a bird’s eye view of the red roofs and beautiful vistas of the fortified city. Also, look for battle wounds along the walls, as Dubrovnik was hit in the Yugoslavian war in 1991.
Croatia's biggest cultural bash
Having recently celebrated its 60th anniversary, the Dubrovnik Summer Festival (Dubrovačke ljetne igre) is one of Europe's most established celebrations of the classical arts. For 47 days and nights, from July 10 to August 25, the streets, churches, squares and famous buildings of Dubrovnik's Old Town host the big names in classical music, theatre, opera and dance.
The festival has taken place every year since 1950. In the war of 1992, in place of an opening ceremony, locals lit candles in the windows while Ivan Gundulić's Anthem to Freedom played on the radio to a deserted main street of Stradun.