1000 PERFORMANCES BY THE MOBILE THEATER // 08. 1994.
SEAD-SISALO ARSLANAGIC // ACTOR
ORAL HISTORY - INTERVIEW
ORAL HISTORY - TRANSCRIPT

August 1994

Sead-Sisalo Arslanagic
Actor
1000 PERFORMANCES BY THE MOBILE THEATER

‘And always during our show at some time, between acts, so to speak, we would have some kind of game. This would be a game with balloons or a bag race, so that the children would have some kind of recreational activity. Whenever we heard that the city was being heavily bombarded, then we would start singing. Children’s fears are most easily calmed through song.’

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AUGUST 1994


• A common scene on the streets of Sarajevo: in the tram stand passengers reading newspapers, while a sniper on the hill shoots all over Marijn Dvor. All wait for the shooting to stop. Passengers entering the tram choose the "best" place in the tram, where one has "the least chance of being shot" - Sarajevo Roulette.


• The usual sight at UN checkpoints where they should provide control of Bosnian Serb weapons: the Serbs arrive at checkpoints, take weapons by force from UN soldiers, then engage in talks over restoring the weapons under control.


• Foreign Minister of Russia, Andrei Koziryev: "I will no longer talk with Radovan Karadzic."
• At the airport negotiations on the cessation of sniper shootings.
• Because of the refusal to sign the proposed plan of the Contact Group and their referendum vote, the Serbian government sends a letter to the Bosnian Serbs: "Do not hide yourselves behind the referendum."


• The Government of Yugoslavia decides to break off political and economic relations with the Bosnian Serbs and the leadership in Pale. Borders are closed, transportation stopped and ban passed prohibiting political leaders and members of Parliament to step on Yugoslav soil.


• Bosnian Serbs seize a tank, 2 APC′s from a UN checkpoint. NATO aircraft warn their headquarters, and then act. UN Commander Michael Rose: "We warned the Serbian side to take shelter, because we did not want to kill soldiers." The green light for attacks comes from Washington, after consultation with Moscow and Brussels. "
• Passengers injured in a tram. The trams stops working.


• After the NATO air strikes, the Serbs return the tank, 2 APC′s and 2 anti-aircraft weapons. Admiral Leighton Smith, on the occasion of the NATO actions: "The point of the attack was to warn the Serbs so that they don’t even think of doing this again."


• Since the closure of the "blue routes" prices in the markets have soared by 100%.


• Momcilo Krajisnik, president of the Bosnian Serb Assembly, sends a request to the Contact Group to change the maps and give the Serbs their own state, otherwise they will be responsible for the escalation of the war in Bosnia.


• "Krug 99" launches a campaign: Declaration on a unified Sarajevo.
• Thousandth performance of "Moving Theatre."


• Swimming in the rivers of Sarajevo is forbidden due to contaminated water and the increasing occurrence of jaundice.
• Manfred Woerner, Secretary General of NATO, passes away.


• At Sarajevo airport an agreement is signed on snipers.


• Issues surround the commissioning of a new water supply - wait for a unit for water treatment.
• A BiH expedition stops its climb on the Himalayas due to the illness of one of the climbers.


• Vatican works on plans for the Pope's visit to Sarajevo. The Vatican gives consideration to the warning from Radovan Karadzic that the Pope will be shot by Muslims who in turn will blame the Serbs for the assassination.


• UN observers monitor Igman road with cameras, as Bosnian Serbs are firing on it.
• Sarajevo tram: UN troops will be passengers on the tram in order to ensure the safety of the passengers.


• The ARBiH liberates the city Velika Kladusa. The Army issues a proclamation for citizens to have confidence in it.


• General Michael Rose rides on the Sarajevo tram with specially designed tram tickets designed just for him and his symbolic ride.


• President of Yugoslavia, Slobodan Milosevic refuses to appoint observers at the border. Kozyrev travels to Belgrade.


• A fashion show with pieces made from clay and yeast is held; the designer is Snjezana Hufnagl.


• Everthing is prepared for the Pope's arrival. An altar is being constructed.


• Russian Foreign Minister Andre Kozyrev says after his visit to Belgrade, "We must strengthen sanctions against the Bosnian Serbs and ease sanctions against Belgrade."


• A statement from Radovan Karadzic, on the occasion of a possible lifting of the arms embargo for the country of Bosnia and Herzegovina: "If the international community lifts the embargo, we will detain all foreigners, shoot down all planes, and kidnap UN observers."


• Andrei Kozyrev in Sarajevo.


• After discussions with Koziryev, Slobodan Milosevic agrees to place observers on the border.

Theaters

“Kamerni teatar 55” is located in a shelled building in the main street, Marshal Tito 55. The auditorium is one of the safest places in the city. Every day at 1 p.m. (the time is determined by the difficulty of moving about in the light-less city at night) there is a performance, a presentation of a new bank, newspaper, or a commemoration of some significant event... Sometimes there are cocktail-parties where the humanitarian aid is served. Hair is the most popular hit.

CULTURAL SURVIVAL

Sarajevo is a unique city on the planet. It is the site where our civilization has been dismantled in the course of intentional violence.
But Sarajevo is also the symbol of civil defense, the site where violence has been fought back with tolerance, fascism with art and culture, destruction with rebuilding, death with humour, the outburst of rural culture with the one that's urban terror with stubborn maintaining of normal city lifestyle.
Sarajevo has been deprived of all the civil, existential and social rights. It has been deprived of the right to live. Everything that makes normal urban living has been taken away from Sarajevo and its citizens, everything that could have been taken away has been taken away, all except for the right to survive by maintaining the right to culture.
But among all that destruction and dying, kids are being born, birthdays celebrated, weddings carried out. In the city surrounded by the deadly circle of primitivism the exhibitions are being opened, movies made, festivals organized, theatre plays and musicals performed.
Sarajevo lives the post-cataclysm. It is the picture of civilization emerging out of cataclysm, making something out of nothing, giving messages for the future.
Not because the future is necessarily a future of wars and disasters, but because humans are growing older and being born into a world which is ever less secure.
All that has been left under the ruins of Sarajevo, all that has survived the shelling of our civilization is the spirit of the cultural survival. The reconstruction of that spirit, the spirit of Sarajevo must start – now. Otherwise – Sarajevo will become the graveyard of the principles of multiethnicity and human rights.

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