#3You speak of quantity, but what about quality, and which of these ten plays do you consider a good theater play?
Here: Nobody can say that Towards Oneself is not a play that has all qualities. Then The Dervish and Death has all qualities, Neighbors is also a show with all qualities, School for Modern Women – if not on the top has the middle that is very important for me in the theatre.
However, not only these but other plays as well are shown in front of a relatively small number of audience, expect at the opening night. Does the audience not know what good theatre is?
No, I’ll repeat: if I managed to have so many plays in 15 months, I also managed to increase the number of audience in the theater. In this way, I want to say that there are no real managers who think about the audience that is the main player of the theater. In my theater there are no plays now. Even those that I staged and had 20-25 performances per year are not played. Maybe there are financial problems due to which I also left the managerial post. There are many inherited debts in that theatre that nobody, the Ministry of Culture of someone else, have the desire to cover and start from zero. This year, the Theatre has 55 years of its existence. I don’t think that one should start from zero and without any obligations to the former collaborators, but the budget that is obtained should be directed towards the basic business – production. I also think that after each 10th performance there should be a new contract made with the actors that are part-timers. The last actor who was employed at the Albanian Theatre was 20 years ago. So, there is a big vacuum, besides so many young graduated Albanian actors who graduated from Faculty of Theatre Arts in Skopje, Tetovo University, and Tirana and Priština. They walk around the city and can not even try to tell us that they deserve to be on the stage.
#4You are often with actors, with the relatively young ones that are already growing old; has their dream on what an actor is, on what they were educated about, already disappeared?
I’ll start with myself. Several years ago I had a big interview for the main daily in Stockholm. The journalist asked me: after so many years of work in the theater, after so many characters that I played, have I found my place in it? My response, although then I had 29 years of work in the theater behind me, was: as a young man, I was convinced that I was the best actor in the world. Now I know that only my head is somewhere on the stage looking for its place, and I still haven’t found mine. What do I want to say? Unfortunately, this young generation of actors that obtained their degrees are convinced in themselves that they are actors, not knowing that acting is proven on the stage, must have lost their hope to become actors. Years pass by. The first generation graduated almost a decade ago and some of them have not even reached a supporting role, not to mention a big one. They must be convinced inside themselves that they are actors, but to confirm their qualities, someone has to think and provide for them what we have to provide, and that is a job. I think that it is not enough to only open schools. The ones who open them should think about how these people will be employed; prove themselves that they can live from this profession as well. Nowadays, it is impossible.
#5It is a difficult and complex work?
During the Kosovo crisis, I became a diabetic because of my nerves. As an actor and man who wants to work on his profession only, and not with nonsense that the others before me had to bring the theater in this position, it is clear that we all need a lot of work. As for everything that is good, one needs work and clear idea.
To what extent can culture, together with the theater, change our awareness for common future?
There are also positive examples of us who deal with the arts; we are the ones who go before our times and show the way to the others. Of course, those who are capable of following us. However, we have to be persistent, not to go back, and only go forward and forward. I am the one who wanted to make a play with Ivan Popovski and Slobodan Unkovski for example. These are plays that have presented the country outside its borders and will continue to do so. For me, they are the people with whom I was sure in what I was working and what we were working. So, we have the experience together that one can and should work. The others should learn and change their opinions. I know that not much can be changed with this, but an attempt can be made so that some people come to their sense. It is the most difficult with them because these are mainly people who don’t want to come to their sense at all.
Well, you yourself prove that one can not live only on the theatre one works for; so, for the young ones – have they missed their train?
Unfortunately, they think that they are in the car that is somewhere. However, not only that they missed the train that runs with the time and the years, they should also know that this profession asks for a complete involvement and continuity without which you can not keep your energy needed for the stage, You need big energy for the stage: physical, psychological, internal, external.