„La bottega del caffè“ directed by Vinko Brešan was the first premiere title in the theater programme of 67th Dubrovnik Summer Festival - and it conquered the hearts of local audience. More than 4000 people watched two dressed rehearsals and altogether six performances which were held on 31 June, 1, 2, 3, 4and 5 of August. The last one was additionally added to the programme because of the exceptional interest of the audience.
„La bottega del caffè“ is one of the most successful comedies written by italian comediographer Carlo Goldoni. 21st century performance of „La bottega del caffè“ seems as a worthy successors of this former one performed in seventies, adopted and translated by Frano Čale on Dubrovnik dialect. The premiere of the original „La bottega del caffè“ was directed by Tomislav Radić in 1978 and performed for ten years in a row at the Gundulić Square.
According to dramaturge Mira Muhoberac plot takes place in the summer of 1978, same year the play was first performed at the Dubrovnik Summer Festival. The play is directed by one of the most prominent Croatian film and theater directors, Vinko Brešan whose comedies get highest ratings in Croatian cinemas and theatres and who won different prestigious awards at home and abroad. The innkeeper Frano named his caffè bar Divona, which is the former name of Sponza palace. Mate Matišić did the music, Ana-Marija Bogdanović choreography, set design was done by Marin Gozze, costimography by Doris Kristić and light design by Rade Stamenković.
For the extremely positive reviews credits go to the Festival Drama Ensemble, composed of great Croatian actors. The innkeeper Frano is played by Nikša Butjer and a gentleman of Dubrovnik by Pjer Meničanin. Nikša Kušelj was Dživo the merchant; Marija Škaričić played the role of Blage, Dživo's wife. Maro Martinović played the role of a fake Count Karlo and his wife Lucrecija was played by Linda Begonja. Anđela Ramljak played the role of ballerina Slađana and Branimir Vidić Flika a gambling-house owner. Other roles were: Nikola Baće as Frano's boy-servant, Nika Burđelez as a nun, Edi Jertec, Maro Drobnić, Luka Čerjan, Petar Puljić. Mate Matišić, the songwriter, performed also as a band member along with Tome Matišić and Stanko Kovačić. Festival choir, conducted by Maja Marušić, consisted of Kolarin Theater Company, Dubrovnik Chamber Choir and many students, pupils and citizens of Dubrovnik.