Montazstroj is a performance group founded in 1989 in Zagreb, Croatia, under the artistic direction of Borut Separovic. During the 1990’s Montazstroj has received international recognition, high critical acclaims, and awards as the most successful Croatian Company of dance and physical theater. Subsequently, the Company performed at a number of international festivals and venues in more than 20 European countries and the USA. Widely differing in their content, style and format, Montazstroj art pieces were usually described as political and engaged, commonly exploring uncharted artistic and often interdisciplinary areas. Creating a different, but communicative theater, Montazstroj has been extremely attractive to the wider public from the very beginning. Its projects are mostly intended for younger generations and all those who never made a habit out of going to the theater.
The initial seven years of the Company were dedicated to the ‘Theatrical representation of football and pop culture’. The aim was to explore the mental and physical limits of the performers, as well as the total artwork, including all domains of contemporary art. In addition, the Company realized several performances, installations, award winning video clips, and choreographic works. After the successful introduction with the plays “VATROTEHNA”, and “RAP OPERA 101” (adaptations of antic myths in the context of global satellite programs and local war surrounding), Montazstroj first came into worldview in 1991, with the success of their music video clip “Croatia in flame”. The artistic research was continued with an actualization of post-communist transitional myths (the triviality of late-capitalist mythologies in “EVERYBODY GOES 2 DISCO FROM MOSCOW TO SAN FRANCISCO” and the biblical conversion in “FRAGILE”), when Montazstroj was even labeled as the theatre of transition.
In 1997, Montazstroj relocated its activity and initiated its artistic plan entitled “Performing mission”, with a long-term objective of building an international company with a strong artistic identity, unbound by a particular culture. Operating in a nomad manner, but predominantly in the Netherlands (under the name Performingunit), the group focuses on the “human state”, that is, the position of the individual, and identity problems, attempting to avoid spectacular theatrical elements and highlighting the very presence of performers as the main ingredient of the production. In this period more intimate performances, such as “TERRIBLE FISH” (emerging from Sylvia Plath’s poetry), “WHO IS WOYZECK?” (based on Büchner’s canonic text of Western Theater) and “THE ENCYCLOPEDIA OF THE DEAD“ (after the equally entitled story by Danilo Kiš) were realized.
Montazstroj’s last projects “T-FORMANCE”, “T-FAKTOR” and “THE THEATER YOU DESERVE” belong to a series of innovative interdisciplinary projects. These are multimedia interactive games/events, which explore the phenomenon of terrorism and its cultural performability, that is, contemporaneity in relation to the “3T” – terror, TV and theater. By amalgamating the traditions of theatrical performance and contemporary interactive trends, the audience is in a position to determine the final form and content of the performance, by a number of decisions it is faced with making. Special emphasis is put on the use of new media (the internet and mobile phones), which is why such projects step out of the theater into the sphere of digital art.