Istanbul Theater Festival to raise curtain in November
The 21st Istanbul Theater Festival will take place between Nov. 13 and 26. The festival will offer theatergoers an extensive program, featuring a range of plays, dance shows and performances.
A total of 55 performances by 19 theater and dance ensembles, 13 of which are from Turkey, will be presented. The performances will take place across 19 different stages in 18 different venues on both the European and Anatolian sides of Istanbul.
The festival program also lists a number of events including panels, film screenings, master classes and workshops with the participation of international guests and experts.
The program was announced at a press meeting held at Zorlu PSM on Sept. 27. At the opening ceremony, the festival’s honorary awards were presented to Duygu Sağıroğlu, a screenwriter, director, stage designer and academician and Zeynep Oral, a journalist, writer, human rights activist and theater lover at heart.
The final honorary award will be presented to world-renowned choreographer Angelin Preljocaj, who will visit Istanbul within the scope of the festival on Nov. 18.
The festival plays will be staged at Zorlu PSM, Moda Stage, ENKA İbrahim Betil Oditorium, Çevre Theater, Caddebostan Culture Center, Yunus Emre Culture Center, DasDas, Kenter Theater and Mimar Sinan Fine Arts Faculty (MSGSU) Bomonti Campus Şebnem Selışık Aksan Stage.
The festival’s free side events will take place at Tüyap Book Fair, Moda Stage, Fransız Culture Center, MSGSU Bomonti Campus, Sahne Khas, Studio Oyuncuları and Salon İKSV.
The festival will also host six foreign theater and dance ensembles. Among them, “Encore,” the final chapter of the trilogy that started with “Alarme” and continued with “Amor,” will be staged by the Attis Theater.
Preljocaj will also reach the audience with his latest work “La Fresque.” Shakespeare’s immortal play “Richard III” will bring theater lovers together with Thomas Ostermeier’s interpretation.
The festival program also includes the Italian immersive theater ensemble TPO’s “Farfalle,” which invites audiences of all ages to see the world through the eyes of butterflies. Other foreign performances include Portuguese director Pedro Penim’s “Before,” which takes the audience back in time and “Seuls,” which is an emotionally charged play by Lebanese-Canadian playwright and director Wajdi Mouawad about his search for himself.
Twelve plays from Turkey will premiere at the festival. The first one will be Checkhov’s “The Seagull,” directed by Serdar Biliş, one of Turkey’s remarkable directors of the contemporary theater stage and produced by Pürtelaş Tiyatro.
The program also includes “Home,” “The Dinner,” “I Love You Turkey,” “The Tempest,” “The Collaborator,” “Migraaaants,” “When in Rome” and “Panopticon.”
A profound and silent master of the human darkness of Turkish literature, Nahid Sirri Örik’s never-before-staged play “Betrayal” will also meet with audiences for the first time.
The living legend of the ancient Greek theater, the founder and director of the Attis Theater, Theodoros Terzopoulos will participate in a panel entitled “The Actor in the Era of Globalization” as well as in another panel, where his book “The Return of Dionysos” will be introduced.
The side events also include the staging of “Acts of Goodness,” written by the Swedish director and playwright Mattias Andersson.
The “International Platform” of the festival will continue in 2017 to ensure successful examples of the local theater stage are included in the programs of various festivals and institutions abroad and reach a wider audience.
Ticket sales for the festival will begin on Oct. 7.