Actors gather to protest new theater regulations
ISTANBUL - Anatolia News Agency
Turkish actors and actresses yesterday walked through the Tünel area near Istanbul’s İstiklal Avenue, after which they unfurled a banner reading ‘free theater against fear.’ Another protest was also made simultaneously by in the capital Ankara. AA photo
Reactions are growing against the Istanbul Metropolitan Municipality’s new regulations on the artistic management of the Istanbul City Theaters. Yesterday, actresses and actors gathered in front of Galatasaray High School to protest the latest decisions.
According to the regulations, the administrative committee of the City Theaters will change, with the head of the administrative board being replaced by the Culture Department head or the City Theaters manager. Actors and actresses working under the body of the City Theaters have said the change is being made to undermine the administrative power of the head of the administrative board.
Actors and actresses walked through the Tünel area near İstiklal Avenue, after which they unfurled a banner reading “free theater against fear.” Actor Engin Alkan spoke on behalf of the group and said it was very important to have different voices in the management of the theaters. Noting that “conservative art” is a term which has entered the process of democratization, Alkan said art should not be associated with the political will.
Another protest was made simultaneously in Ankara. Artists gathered in front of the Büyük Tiyatro (Great Theater) in Ankara and, like in Istanbul, they opened banners that read “free theater against fear.”
Reading a written statement on behalf of the associations and the city theaters, Şahin Ergüney said: “Probably for the first time in the world, theater is being separated from theater artists.”
Ergüney added that if artists are cast out of the management of an art institution like city theaters, art will become dominated by politics.