Government Public Relations and Media Office
Government Public Relations and Media Office

Slovenia - 10 Years of Independence
Path to Independence
Slovene Contribution to World Civilisation
The Celebration



"The tenth anniversary of the independent Slovenia is a great holiday for all citizens of Slovenia as well as all those who are fond of our country and have helped it in any way to achieve sovereignty," is a message of the co-ordinating committee organising the programme of national homage to the 10th anniversary of independence.

The main concept of celebrations, formulated by the co-ordinating committee based within the Government PR and Media Office, is not limited to two or three central events in the Slovenian capital but tries to include a broad palette of events and festivities in many Slovenian locations. Only in this way will this important anniversary be able to reach people more intensively and contribute to the affirmation of positive patriotism and respect of the citizens' own country, the committee believes.

The festivities will not only take place in the days directly prior to or after the National Day, but also earlier and later, as events marking Slovenia becoming independent have been and will be going on intensively for several months. Celebrations thus already started with the concert put on by the orchestra of the Slovenian Armed Forces on 11 May in the Cankarjev dom Cultural and Congress Centre in Ljubljana. They will be concluded by paying homage to the 10th anniversary of the last members of the Yugoslav People's Army leaving Slovenia from Koper on 26 October 2001.

Within this framework, the co-ordinating committee has separately prepared a schedule of events of national significance, and composed a list of events organised within different Slovenian municipalities to celebrate the anniversary.

Other Events

  • 24 May - 26 June: exhibition of archival documents 'Development of Slovenian Statehood', Ljubljana Castle
  • 25 June: special session of the National Assembly, with exhibitions on Slovenian money and stamps in the lobby of the grand hall (until 5 July), Ljubljana
  • 25 June: national ceremony 'Sejalec' (The Sower), Ljubljana, Trg Republike

A brief description of the programme of the national celebration on the 10th anniversary of Slovenia's independence

The event which will start on the National Day, 25 June at 21.00 on the square Trg Republike in Ljubljana, is located on the very site where Slovenia celebrated the declaration of its independence ten years ago. The flagpole with the Slovenian flag and the national tree - the linden planted on that day - are two symbolic elements from these times as the focal point around which the ceremonies will take place.

The protocol part of the event includes the honour-guard greeting of the President of the Republic, his salute of the guard and of the ensigns of various Slovenian military and police troops, and the unveiling of the Slovenian flag by the most famous Slovenian Olympic champions. Then the President of the Republic will hold a ceremonial speech, and the public in the central site will be addressed by the German Chancellor who will be the guest of the Government of the Republic of Slovenia on that day.

After the protocol part has been completed, there begins the

Sower, an Art Event in Nine Visual Images

"The motif of the sower, this famous painting of the Slovenian impressionist Matija Grohar from 1907, is a motif which is universal and paradigmatic (Jean-François Millet, Vincent van Gogh). Ivan Grohar placed it within a particular and carefully selected context - the Slovenian landscape in a particular fragment of time - the morning. In Grohar's painting the Sower, I recognise an infinite movement, standstill, creation, duration ... In one single movement, I can recognise an unhaltable creation which is risen to the to the level of a monumental gesture, a universal image, between something which is not yet there but is about to become ... infinite. This infinity, the desire for any freely expressed form, genre, kind, in art, in the culture, is based on the premise that Slovenia, through its physical existence, its relief, through its variety between the seaside and the Alps, among the fields, the salt-pans, a carpet of sunflowers, is part of the European and the global culture. Discourses and texts which define this concept form a network, they form metaphors and metonymies: Declaration of the Rights of a Human and a Citizen, Hegel's note about the Mediterranean Sea as an axis around which all the fundamental civilisations turned, Eluard's Freedom appear in iridescence together with the thoughts and rhythms of the Slovenian men of letters France Preseren, Josip Murn Aleksandrov, Srecko Kosovel, Vladimir Bartol, and Tomaz Salamun ... This story tells about the sky, about the fields, about alpinism, poetry, about the memory, the Slovenian Athens. This is the story that is, through its script, grounded in the fields, in the four elements, earth, fire, air, water, in the dreams of a river into which you can never step twice, as Heraclites said.". This is how the Director and the scriptwriter Matjaz Berger defined the concept of this artistic event.

The concept will be performed by actors and actresses, dancers and mime artists through performances organised around ten thematic fields each marked by its own colour: the Fields of Autonomy, Universe, Writing, Civilisation, Alpinism, the Sower, Dance, Memory, Desire, Freedom, an then the Epilogue and the video projections on special canvases on the sky-scrapers and video walls. They will be accompanied by the Slovenian Philharmonic Orchestra conducted by Marko Munih.