A renowned puppetry festival, the Biennial Festival of the Contemporary Puppetry Art LUTKE has been organised by Ljubljana Puppet Theatre since 1995. The festival focuses on original, quality and versatile international production of puppet, object and visual theatre. It presents an international selection of puppet performances, designed for both children and young people as well as adults.
The Festival’s programme is enriched by various exhibitions, round table talks, off-festival activities, workshops and street actions. It predominantly takes place on the stages of Ljubljana Puppet Theatre.
The Ljubljana Puppet Theatre Festival first hosted puppeteers from all over the world in 1933. Fifty years later in 1983 the organisation hosted the second international conference on the training of professional puppeteers. In 1992, Ljubljana Puppet Theatre organised the 16th Congress of the International Union of the Marionette (UNIMA) in Ljubljana.
The main premise of festival’s selection revolves around daring, challenging, provocative, inspiring and above all high quality puppet performances with an international dimension.
Combining traditional puppetry knowledge and daring exploration enables the development of contemporary technologies and new materials. Festival performances offer versatile visual expressions, readdress proven puppet practices and confirm endless possibilities of puppet expression.
The festival is a gathering of puppet theatres, troupes, and puppetry schools from all over the world. Past festivals have featured puppetry performances from Croatia, the Czech Republic, France, Spain, the Netherlands, Italy, France, Germany, Cyprus, Norway, Poland, Hungary, Peru, Australia, the UK, Russia, Slovenia, and so on.
In 2016, the festival was partly merged with an international project called All Strings Attached: the Pioneers of European Puppetry behind the Scenes. As such, it held a exceptionally rich international programme of professional workshops, lectures and exhibitions.