Centre for Dance and Performing Arts  F.R.E.E. D.A.N.C.E. Karlovac

STUDIO: Contemporary dance studio F.R.E.E. D.A.N.C.E., P. Zrinski 15, Karlovac​
OFFICE: Jurja Križanića 13, 47000 Karlovac

MOB: 00385 99 388 72 07
EMAIL: info@freedance.hr
WEB: freedance.hr

FB: @contemporarydanceatelier
IG: @freedance_karlovac

IBAN:HR74 24840081106703057

Centre for Dance and Performing Arts F.R.E.E. D.A.N.C.E. is an independent and non-profit organization founded in 2004 that brings together artists and professionals advancing contemporary dance art and culture. It focuses on education, then the organization and production of performing projects and the development of dance art. It continuously and openly engages creators and recipients of dance art, promotes cultural and educational goals and strives to create positive conditions for the development and improvement of an independent cultural scene and contemporary dance art. Free Dance operates in two locations and gains experience in various contemporary cultural and social projects in the community, including work with children, young people and wider citizenship. 

Organized by Free Dance 2011, the Karlovac Dance Festival (KDF) was launched as an initiative and open place for different collaboration, exchange knowledge and experiences. It tends to achieve and enrich socio-cultural, educational and creative values. The goals of the KDF are to organize the creation and maintenance of an international partnership dance project, with an emphasis on the production platform, multicultural and artistic collaborations, residencies, research projects and open dialogue of artists, audiences and national and international festival participants.



We tend to connect different artistic disciplines with other areas of human activity and include experts in our work, learning from them, but also passing on our experience to them and thus encouraging them to apply imagination and creativity in their disciplines. In addition, we directly involve spectators in the performances, especially the younger audience, which we prepare for participation in workshops, teaching them how to approach dance material, stage speech, the relationship between text and dance. This encourages togetherness, raises awareness of the value of artwork and different aesthetic approaches.

As a core philosophy Free Dance seeks to explore new pathways into performance and endeavours to discover different ways of approaching art practice and the viewing of dance. We strive to create original and distinctive work, embracing multiplicity as a core value.


Artistic works

Visible Time and A Dipper, An Artist and Doctor of Natural Sciences were preceded by research in collaboration with natural science experts because we want to encourage cooperation between science and art, these necessarily creative but separate areas of activity, given that one enriches the other by innovating culture in a broader sense and opening new possibilities of modern of life. We apply a similar principle of connection and inclusion to the work to the various artistic disciplines. Both performances are multidisciplinary, we strive to create a coherent tissue in which artistic disciplines permeate and mutually influence development with concrete performing solutions. The vertical dance represented in the performances is applied in both circus and dance art. Contemporary dance and circus in many aspects touch and overlap, and as related arts they can rely on each other in production and develop in parallel. Multidisciplinary approach requires the search for new performative formats with which different audiences become familiar and engage and are increasingly willing to embrace similar events in the future. 



We want to present our work to international audiences, share our vision and knowledge with our partners, and embark on new collaborations. Get insight into other contexts of art creating, draw inspiration from them. Create a more permanent space for performing and circulation of works of art.





Melita Spahić Bezjak

Melita Spahić Bezjak, dance artist. She graduated from Ana Maletić’s School of Contemporary Dance in Zagreb, and improved her skills at various workshops and seminars. She continues her dance education at the London Contemporary Dance School, where she received her master’s degree. During her studies and work in London (2004-2009), she participated in various dance and theater projects and operas. Melita is engaged in dance, pedagogical and choreographic research work. Collaboration, research and questioning are part of many author’s projects. Melita shapes her expression by finding inspiration in research work, links between science and art, nature and space. The visual aspect, multimedia, technologies and interactivity in dance are certainly the drivers of various conceptual projects and choreographic works. She is the author and choreographer of many dance theater projects in the UK and Croatia. With her works, she participated in various festivals and choreographic platforms and choreographed for students at LCDS and Roehampton University in London. In the Republic of Croatia, she collaborated on drama, theater and dance performances with various artists and theater companies. She is the founder of the ensemble MSD (UK) and the organization Free Dance, and she started the Karlovac Dance Festival (KDF). She is a member of UPUH and HZSU (2012-2019). Currently, she works as a dance artist in Karlovac on independent artistic projects, actively ‘dances’ yoga, teaches contemporary dance at UŠ Matka Brajša Rašana Labin, and works as a dance teacher at the Contemporary Dance Studio and works in Free Dance.

Alma Jerinić

Alma Jerinić (born 1984 in Karlovac) graduated from the Economics & Tourism School in Karlovac, earning the title of economic technician. Her passion for dance began during her time at the Ballet Studio of the City Theater Zorin dom, Karlovac, where she gained dance education from 1990 to 2004. Under the guidance of mentors such as Branka Podvorac, Đurđica Kunej, and Melita Spahić, she honed her skills. As a member of the Ballet Studio, she contributed to various dance performances including “Solacium Intro,” “GSM/GledamSlušamMislim,” “Solo Tango,” and “Rapsodia del Cante Jondo.”

Alma is a co-founder of the Center for Dance and Performing Arts F.R.E.E. D.A.N.C.E. Karlovac, alongside Melita Spahić Bezjak and Ivana Frančišković Olrom. Through her involvement with Free Dance, she has gained extensive experience in producing and coordinating artistic contemporary dance projects.

Since 2011, Alma has been actively involved in organizing the Karlovac Dance Festival (KDF), serving as one of the project coordinators. Over the years, she has taken on roles such as assistant, coordinator at art shows, volunteer coordinator, and office coordinator, contributing significantly to the festival’s success.

In addition, Alma has been engaged as an assistant in various dance projects, programs, and artistic activities undertaken by Free Dance since 2019. Her expertise was recognized when she served as an expert collaborator on the “Stimulating and Supporting Contemporary Dance” project in 2019 and 2021. Since 2022, Alma has continued her collaboration with Free Dance, working on programs such as “Forward with the Audience” and the Karlovac Dance Festival, where she serves as a program coordinator at the Free Dance Contemporary Dance Studio.

Ivana Francišković Olrom

Ivana was born in Karlovac in 1979. She studied dramaturgy, and then started writing. In everything she creates and does, she is guided and inspired by nature. She is the author and editor of the small publishing house Šumeki. Since 2002, she has been an active member, volunteer and employee of the Eko Pan association, where she has been developing the Klijanac i Pup social enterprise for the last three years. She worked with Melita Spahić Bezjak on performances of the Ballet Studio of the City Theater Zorin dom, and later joined her in the Free Dance association with the desire to promote and position contemporary dance art in Karlovac.

Sonja Zalar

Sonja Zalar is a creative director, multidisciplinary designer and independent artist. Born in 1983 in Karlovac, Croatia. After completing her studies in computer science (2008, Zagreb University of Applied Sciences, Digital Design), she works professionally in the fields of design, visual arts and new media. Since 2006, she periodically lives abroad, including England and New Zealand. Currently lives and works in Croatia. Sonja passionately creates digital solutions and helps visionaries to turn their idea into a long-lasting, recognizable and beloved brand / product. In F.R.E.E. D.A.N.C.E. she has been active since 2023.