Slovak National Theatre director resigns

Vladimír Antala was the SND director for more than a year.

Former SND chair Vladimír Antala and Culture Minister Ľubica Laššáková talk to the media on January 24, 2019, in Bratislava.Former SND chair Vladimír Antala and Culture Minister Ľubica Laššáková talk to the media on January 24, 2019, in Bratislava.(Source: TASR)

The Slovak National Theatre (SND) will get a new director in 2020, after Vladimír Antala decided to leave his post for serious family reasons. This will be the SND's third head in three years.

Antala had temporarily replaced the previous head Marián Chudovský in the summer of 2018 before he was officially appointed to the managing post for five years in January 2019. He resigned from the post at the beginning of 2020.

Related articleConductor Rastislav Štúr becomes new SND opera director Read more 

“Under his management, the financial situation of SND significantly improved,” Culture Minister Ľubica Laššáková (Smer) said on January 2.

Antala had worked as a long-term economist in SND before taking on the leading position. The unfavourable financial condition at the national theatre led to the minister recalling Chudovský and replacing him with Antala.

Chudovský refused the notion that he had made mistakes and pointed instead to the poor funds allocated for SND.

Kováč as a temporary head

For the time being, Peter Kováč will take over Antala’s responsibilities. Kováč is currently a director of the drama section at the SND.

“The name of a new SND chair will be announced in the first half of 2020 when the selection procedure ends,” the ministry wrote on its website.

Although the SND unionists received Antala’s appointment last year positively, some actors did not agree with him being named to the post without a selection procedure.

A wave of discontent arose in September 2019, when Antala recalled the previous head of the drama section Michal Vajdička and replaced him with Kováč.

Vajdička removed for a political reason

Related articleThe culture minister cut money for some cultural institutions Read more 

“The decision to recall Vajdička was a political one and arguments given were made up on purpose,” said MP Viera Dubačová during a session of the parliamentary culture and media committee on September 10, 2019, as quoted by the TASR newswire.

Antala was not a suitable candidate to become the director as he had been, among other things, responsible for the national theatre's poor economic performance, she added. Laššáková, however, did not agree with her and portrayed Antala as a skilled manager unlike Vajdička.

Vajdička was recalled on September 3, 2019, for his managerial failures. He had, however, criticised the Culture Ministry and Antala before. Vajdička had also taken part in the For a Decent Slovakia protests.

Get daily Slovak news directly to your inbox

The processing of personal data is subject to our Privacy Policy and the Cookie Policy. Before submitting your e-mail address, please make sure to acquaint yourself with these documents.

Top stories

UPDATED: Kuciak’s boss: I'm 100 percent sure Kočner ordered the murder

Judges to announce on January 22 if they will accept Threema texts as evidence.

Ján Kuciak's colleagues

National court drama intensifies as polls raise alarm

The first week of the Kuciak murder trial saw key witnesses take the stand while polls do not rule out a far-right victory in February.

Peter Toth

Foreigners' Police in Dunajská Streda will change address

The police will move to Mlynská Street.

A new Dunajská Streda Foreigners's Police building is located on Mlynská Street

Haščák said the message he got from Kočner was not about Kuciak

Two people have already been punished in the murder case.

Penta financial group partner Jaroslav Haščák was called forward to the court because of a message Kočner had sent to him prior to the Kuciak murder