In with the new: Top 5 venues that used to be movie theaters

5. Histrioni theater troupe

Kino Apolo in Ilica street was the second oldest theater in Zagreb. By the time it closed, Apolo had looked like a classy dame down on her luck. Losing most of its former turn of the century class, it’s future as a building was uncertain. Histrioni theater troupe started lobbying for it to become their permanent home as Zagreb was preparing to enter candidacy for the European capital of culture. It took a few years to make the arrangements, but once they got the place, cinema Apolo was restored to its former glory. Now it is Zagreb’s well known satirical theater hosting Histrioni’s plays and such festivals such as Gumbekovi dani (Gumbek’s days, named after Mladen Crnobaj’s nickname (gumbek- little button), a well-known cabaret performer), honoring the cabaret tradition of Zagreb.

4. Kino Mosor

Kino Mosor in King Zvonimir’s street 63 kept its name after reopening as a center for independent culture and civic associations. For a few years Kino Mosor’s content was mostly punk concerts, electronic DJ’s, and collage freshmen parties, but since new management took over in 2014., the theater was turned into a platform for community events, workshops, social exchange, and cultural production. Today it hosts smaller plays, concerts, exhibitions and dance courses alongside many community organized workshops.

3. Tvornica kulture (Factory of culture)

Before it was the hottest concert venue in Zagreb for the (more or less) indie scene, hosting such names as The Editors, Soulfly, Triggerfinger, Julian Casablancaz from The Strokes and Mastodon (and we’re only listing this month’s performances), Tvornica used to be a worker’s movie theater embedded in a larger complex of worker and union related institutions in Radnicki dom (Worker’s home) during communism. Alongside the main stage meant for bigger performances, Tvornica has a smaller stage for up and coming local musicians and DJ-s and hosts parties regularly.

2. Kino Gric

Holding on to it’s old name, Kino Gric still has film projections every once in a while. For the most part the stage is used for different occasions ranging from music video premieres, snowboard/skate film projections, screenings for a variety of festivals and children’s puppet and off theater plays. Most days though, Kino Gric is a bar frequented by the hip collage crowds and doubles as a club during the weekends, playing mostly EDM, underground hip-hop and indie rock.

1. Zagreba─Źki plesni centar (Zagreb dance center)

Kino Lika had the same fate as its older neighbor down the street, kino Apolo: left to slowly fade away until it was resurrected into a long awaited Zagreb dance center. The city was lacking a proper center for years, never finding adequate spaces for permanent residency in the uptown area until the solution presented itself in the form of kino Lika. Zagreb dance center is the first of it’s kind in Croatia, working towards educating new generations of choreographers and dancers. Fully reimagined in its interior design and purpose, kino Lika now hosts residencies, workshops, festivals, experimental performances, dance courses for the public, plays and events related to promoting and progressing Croatia’s modern dance scene.