The Assembly of the Macedonian Theater Festival “Vojdan Chernodrinski” awards a lifework achievement award to prominent theater workers.

The selection of plays in the Official Program is made by art director.

The festival has a competitive character in the Official Program. The evaluation and the decision for awarding the prizes are made by the evaluation commission (jury).

Awards in the official program

The evaluation committee of the Macedonian Theater Festival “Vojdan Chernodrinski” Prilep, awards the following awards:

  1. Award for best advertising material,
  2. Award for choreography and scene movements,
  3. Award for best music,
  4. Award for best costume design,
  5. Award for best scenography,
  6. Award for best contemporary scene dramatization,
  7. Award for best text,
  8. Award “Trajko Chorevski” for the best young actor,
  9. Award for best young actress,
  10. Award for best female supporting role,
  11. Award “Dimche Trajkovski” for the best male supporting role,
  12. Award for best female leading role,
  13. Award for best male leading role,
  14. Award for best director,
  15. Award for best art achievement on the theatre performance in all of official program.

Lifetime Achievement Awards

Petar Mirchevski

The Lifetime Achievement Award is usually awarded to individuals who have set new standards of quality and reached the peak of the mountain called an artistic career. However, in the case of Petar Mirchevski, an actor according to whom retirement is conditional, a career peak is difficult to define. And how is it possible to define it when Mirchevski is constantly on the rise as if he has just taken the upward path?

The proper beginning of Mirchevski’s acting story happened more than four decades ago when he joined the drama club of Josip Broz Tito high school in Bitola and started acting on the youth stage of Bitola theater, where he got a job after graduating from the Faculty of Dramatic Arts in Skopje in 1979. Since then, Mircevski has devotedly built his career on several parallel paths. As a permanent member of the ensemble of Bitola National Theater and a frequent guest in the main theaters in Macedonia, Mirchevski reaches an impressive number of 170 acting roles. Among them, the role of the first Macedonian Cyrano in Cyrano De Bergerac is particularly noticeable (text: Edmond Rostand, director: Ljubisha Georgievski). This role brought him his first awards (the Actor of the Year award from Ekran in 1991 and Best Male Actor award at Vojdan Chernodrinski MTF in 1992), and thirty years later, Cyrano’s monologues are still engraved in Mirchevski’s memory.

Then, followed collaborations with well-known directors and significant roles from domestic and international drama, such as Tristan (Jealousy and Love, 1992, directed by Slobodan Unkovski), Gavro (Casabalkan, 1998, directed by Zlatko Slavenski), Sancho Panza (Don Quixote, 2011, directed by Vlado Cvetanovski) and Agamemnon (Genocide, 2015, directed by Ljubisha Georgievski). Mircevski is on stage so often that even the most important news, the ones of the birth of his son, was broken to him during the entracte of Overnight directed by Ljuba Milošević. The diversity of Mircevski’s roles and the emotional depth required to embody them inevitably lead to numerous awards at theater festivals, including the Best Young Actor award at Mlad Borec in 1999, the Golden Mask of Ohrid Summer Festival in 1981, and the Best Acting Achievement award at Nušićevi Dani Festival in 2011.

Although following these successes, it seems as if Mirchevski has already reached a considerable altitude, and it is also worth mentioning the work on over 40 TV series and feature films in which he cooperates with current domestic and foreign directors, such as Teona Mitevska, Milcho Manchevski, Dragan Bjelogrlić, Rade Šerbedžija, and Emir Kosturica.

What Mirchevski’s performances have in common, whether on the stage or in front of the camera, is the masterful “being in another person’s shoes” as in his own. Both fierce and fragile, Mirchevski is one of the few actors who act with every atom of his existence and create timeless roles remembered by generations of theater and film lovers in Macedonia and throughout the region. His ability in his supporting roles he acts out in a language he does not speak fluently to win the sympathy of the viewers, as is the case in the Turkish series Goodbye Rumelia, is but another confirmation of his exceptional talent.

In the last decade, Bitola Culture Center entrusted him with another responsible task. As the selector of the Bitola International Monodrama Festival, Mirchevski articulates the modern tendencies in this one-of-a-kind theater genre and thereby participates in defining the cultural policy in the city under Pelister, where the audience has braved him for four decades and is proud of his successes.

After climbing many artistic mountains, the Lifetime Achievement Award is more than merit. However, the connoisseurs of Petar Mirchevski’s career will not only congratulate him on the achievement, but they will also ask him what he is working on at the moment because, as a never-retired actor, Mirchevski is constantly up to conquering new heights.

Petar Temelkovski

How do you write a Lifetime Achievement Award statement for a highly atypical actor and artist of a unique character without it sounding common and typical? Еffortlessly, because Petar Temelkovski’s career is full of unusual facts and unique symbolism.

After graduating from the Theater Academy in Sofia at the end of 1972, Temelkovski began his professional acting career on the theatre stage in an exceptional set of theatrical circumstances. In Life of Galileo by Bertolt Brecht, directed by Branko Stavrev, Telemkovski plays the role of Andrea Sarti, who receives a significant task from his teacher Galileo – preserving his manuscripts and passing on the acquired knowledge to future generations. In this production, Galileo is performed by Ilija Milchin – the acknowledged beacon of Macedonian theater and the main initiator of the foundation of the Vojdan Chernodrinski Macedonian Theater Festival. Thus, Temelkovski’s stage initiation only hints the inestimable importance he is to have for the (development of) theater in Macedonia.

As an actor, Temelkovski has built a unique career. Instead of letting the institutional expectations and the implicit quota rooted in the status of “permanently employed actor” define his acting oeuvre, he is in a race with himself only and his creative capacity. His professional theater-making is like a stroll through the main, and often title, roles in all the most significant works of the world and domestic dramaturgy – including Gorčin (Žarko Komanin’s Pelinovo, 1974) and James Tyrone (Eugene O’Neill’s Long Day’s Journey into Night, 1988); Agamemnon (Euripides’ Iphigenia in Aulis, 1996) and King Lear (Shakespeare’s King Lear, 2002); Hermann Klaus (Goran Stefanovski’s Wild Flesh, 1979) and Maxim Brodski (Jordan Plevnesh’s R, 1987 and 1991). The characters played by Temelkovski are complex and require surgical precision, athletic endurance, and artisanal dedication to acting at every moment on stage. Undoubtedly, his superior professional preparation, suggestive acting, and masterful speech were the key to the collaboration with all significant Macedonian directors, including the most well-known names from the then new/modernist wave: Slobodan Unkovski and Ljubisha Georgievski (with whom he collaborated on 25 projects).

The series of prestigious awards at significant festivals in Macedonia and the region speaks volumes for his atypical acting development: November 13 award in 1984, Sterija’s Award at the Sterjino Pozorje Festival in Novi Sad in 1987, Golden Laurel Wreath at the Festival of Small and Experimental Stages of Yugoslavia in Sarajevo/MESS in 1988, Vojdan Chernodrinski MTF award in 1990 and 2000, Risto Shishkov award at Risto Shishkov Festival of Chamber Theater in Strumica in 2001, as well as the film award at Pula Film Festival in 1976 for his debut as Duko in Branco Gapo’s movie The Longest Journey. In the history of the Macedonian theater, few actors can be proud of festival successes throughout the Balkans.

Surely, the Lifetime Achievement Award statement would be incomplete if the secondary symbolic meaning of the role which Temelkovski started his career with is not mentioned. As an echo of the relationship between Andrea Sarti and Galileo Galilei, Temelkovski, for 11 years, had been the head of the team in charge of fulfilling the past vision of the founder of Vojdan Chernodrinski MTF, Ilija Milchin. As the artistic director, Temelkovski organized and carried out, in his own words, the “last verification” of the development of the Macedonian theater from 2007 to 2017 – not only in front of the audience, jury committees, and critics but also in front of all colleagues who they have built the theater culture in Macedonia together with.

In the city he describes as “a golden cocoon in which the theater is jealously guarded like a silkworm”, Temelkovski’s first role echoes half a century later – as a distinctly award-winning actor, dedicated artistic director, and winner of a lifetime achievement award at the oldest theater festival in the state.