, October 2002
representative of Serbia

Not having managed to wait for you,
Slavic woman,
under the whipping dark clouds
forest executors that tempt us
I settle easily for those pieces of ice
that I squeeze in my hand.
With peace-spreading calm
I would wave my hand
but cannot.
Therefore I shall sit on the grave mound
greeting with my eye your white steeds
sprung from Scythian zones
of uncounted summers,
And when warrior-like we stand
eye to eye
may there be times
when the liver shrivels
in fear of eternity
that the Secret Prince would gladly give us.
And we only wish
for skeins of darkness
our bodies to join
but our soul not to drown
like first kittens.

Zoran Stefanović

Slavic Orpheus


Drama & radio-drama

Before military satellites, industrial killing and Spice Girls there was a time when the Gods were young, and when everything received the form that it would keep until the end of time.

This home page is dedicated to theatrical play and radio drama "Slavic Orpheus" by Zoran Stefanović, written in 1992 as version of the classical myth about Orpheus.

The play deals with the problem of brilliant individuals trying to play important roles in the eternal conflict on the territory of the Balkans, the Fetters-That-Hold-The-World.

Excerpts from reviews

• The play by Zoran Stefanović […] has several exceptional features […] The story of the Slavic Orpheus […] can also be read like a careful ethnographic study on the Slavic religion by Veselin Cajkanovic, and like a political essay on the current, so called New Order, and also like any American SF graphic novel by Frank Miller.
(Borba, Beograd 1992) Full article in Serbian >>

• Stefanovic skillfully uses picturesque metaphors, but also outright irony, in order to bring his readers directly to the hidden essence of his plays. [...] He creates a polysemantic and dense script that, quite masterfully, survives beyond the theater scene as well. Only the fact that, regardless of their undoubted possibilities, Stefanovic's plays have, to date, been more accurately "read" abroad than in Serbia is a paradox of its own.
(Valjevac, Valjevo 1995) Full article in Serbian >>

• That which [...] first leaps to eye is the great linguistic skill [...] Stefanovic writes in a juicy, vivid Serbian language, which is given a particular charm by the mixture of old-time lexis and syntax, and modern slang [...] phrases. Perhaps the greatest value of Stefanovic's plays lies in the great ease with which their plots develop on various levels: they simply glide and draw us irresistibly after them.
(Pogledi, Kragujevac 1995.) Full article in Serbian >>

• It is not difficult to find parallels with the situation today in the Balkans and the whole world in general [...] And all this [in the play] is given in a witty and very interesting projection
(Politika, Belgrade 2002) Full article in Serbian >>

• [The author] brings, to the theater routine found here, an atypical (read unrealistic) sensitivity leaning towards experiment, fantasy and grotesque, full of fetching layered and polysemantic planes.
(Vreme, Beograd 1995) Full article in Serbian >>

• That which singles Stefanović out as an original author, which is the pledge of his authenticity, [...] is his harshness, bitterness, lethality, his direct provocation. The credit for this does not go to his age, but seemingly to the heritage of the forcefulness of "barbarogenius", the dregs of a true artistic rebellion characteristic for this here part of the Balkans. That combination of a Central-European seeing of the world and a forceful, [Ljubomir] Micić would say "savage", spirit and motion, now dark, now brazen, is the specificity of the author Stefanović.
(Dubravka Knežević, essay in the book "Slavic Orpheus and other plays", Belgrade, 1995)
more of essay, in English >>

• A successful symbiosis of an ancient myth and a modern mass-media experience.
(Pobjeda, Podgorica 1992) Full article in Serbian >>

• The existence [is apparent] of a layered intellectual discourse, characteristic theatrical esthetics, as well as looking to that tradition that was, in the history of the theater, the most demanding.
(Petar Grujicic, review of the book "Slavic Orpheus and other plays", Belgrade, 1995) Full article in Serbian >>

• Thus the poetism of Zoran Stefanovic is quite disparate in our [Serbian] literary space. [...] He must not take photographs; he must have visions. He does not capture images, he forms them. He does not take overly from reality, and what he does borrow from it serves him as building material for his search for the essence of people and occurrences.
(Vladimir Stamenkovic, review of the book "Slavic Orpheus and other plays", Belgrade, 1995)
Full article in English


Translated from Serbian by Dragana Rajkov



Translated from Serbian by Dragana Rajkov


• Versions • Productions • Events • Projects •

Reviews and theoretical notes
[Serbian, Macedonian, English etc]

• Reviews • Essays • Authopoetical notes •

Bibliography, theatrography...

• Versions of the play • Editions • Productions • Translations • Awards and prizes • Festivals • Critical notes • Interviews • News & articles •

[Serbian, Macedonian etc]

• Directors' versions & dialogue lists • Biographies • Sketches • Photos • Ilustrations •

About Orpheus
[Serbian, English]

• Myth • Arts • Anthropology • Esotery
• Sources •

[Serbian & English]

• Also by Stefanović • Orpheus & orphism • Religions of Southern-Eastern Europe • Judaism & Christianity •

The Author

Zoran Stefanović was born in 1969 in Loznica, Western Serbia. Playwright, screenwriter. Editor and publisher. Got his degree in dramaturgy and screenwriting at the Belgrade Faculty of Dramatic Arts in 1994. For his films, fiction, plays and graphic novels he received more then dozen awards. His works have been translated into Macedonian, English, Romanian, Slovenian and French. Founder of the "Project Rastko - Internet Library of Serbian Culture" (www.rastko.rs), in 1997. Lives in Belgrade.


• Editor: Zoran Stefanovic • Design: Marinko Lugonja • Webmastering: Mihailo Stefanovic • Technical assistance: Nenad Petrovic • Proofreading: Nenad Petrovic, Zoran Stefanovic et al. • English translation: Dragana Rajkov • Macedonian translation: Goran Trencovski et al. • The author wishes to thank the Theater "Anton Panov" from Strumica, the edition "Znak Sagite" from Belgrade, the Drama editorial staff of Radio Belgrade, and all the other dear people that have, during these ten years, supported this text • Production: TIA Janus, august 2002. • (C) 1992 •

Home pageSlavic Orpheus - dramaSlavic Orpheus - radio-drama
Additional Serbian or bilingual pages:
ChronologyReviewsBibliography, theatrography...Documents
About OrpheusLinksEnglish page of Project RastkoSerbian theater and drama

This page in other languages and/or scripts
Serbian Cyrillic scriptSerbian Latin script • Macedonian • Russsian