The locus of Pionirski dom’s activities is very straightforward – educating children and youth in matters of culture and creativity. However, its scope is rather fascinating and ranges from music, theatre and film education (often engaging well-respected Slovenian artists) to courses in foreign languages and cultural activities. Additionally, it runs two smaller venues in the city centre – the Art Centre (used for visual arts workshops and for smaller exhibitions) and the Jenko Dance Centre.
Pionirski dom is based just outside the city centre, in a striking semicircular building (partially) designed by Jože Plečnik. It also manages the Festival Hall, located in the same building and available for various cultural events or for business and congress purposes.
Originally known as the Baraga Seminary, the building was sort of finished in 1941 (per the original plans it should be a circular building, reminiscent of the Coliseum). Later, in 1956, it was adapted according to the plans of Anton Bitenc and the newly built Festival Hall became one of the prime dancing and socialising venues in Ljubljana.
A few years later, in 1963, Pionirski dom was established and settled in the same building, thus joining the Mladinsko Theatre, situated on the opposite side since a few years before.
Nurturing cultural literacy and creative competence in Ljubljana and the region, Pionirski dom is the biggest institution of its kind in Slovenia. In order to showcase youth creativity, it organises about a dozen festivals annually.
The programmes enacted here are many and various, dealing in visual arts, music (from Orff instruments to presentations of different genres), dance, theatre, improvisational and musical theatre, fashion, graphic design, sculpture, entry exams for art schools, photography, film, building DIY instruments, radio, literature and reading culture in general, science for kids, and about 10 different language courses.