Istanbul theaters to gain speed in May
The 19th Istanbul Theater Festival, organized by the Istanbul Foundation for Culture and Arts (İKSV), will take place this spring with dozens of groups staging close to 100 performances across the city.
Thirty-three of the local productions in the festival’s program, which runs May 9 to June 5, will have their Turkish premieres, three of which will be co-produced by the Istanbul Theater Festival.
The event’s program was announced Feb. 24 at a press conference held at the Rahmi M. Koç Museum. “The Istanbul Theater Festival presents theater lovers with a rich program composed of plays, dance, performance, and events. We are pleased to present such a colorful selection to the festival audience. We believe our festival, which takes place every two years, brings a breath of fresh air to the theater world in Istanbul with each new edition, and we would like to be able to put on our festival every year,” İKSV Chairman Bülent Eczacıbaşı said.
Honorary award to Dikmen Gürün
The first honorary award of the festival will be presented to Prof. Dikmen Gürün, the director of the Istanbul Theater Festival from 1993 to 2013. The other two honorary awards of the festival will be presented to one of Polish theater’s young and innovative directors, Grzegorz Jarzyna, and Edward Hall, the art director of the Propeller Theater Company.
Within the scope of the celebrations for William Shakespeare’s 450th birthday in 2014, the festival will host the Propeller Theater Company, one of the most important company’s staging Shakespeare plays today.
Four performances organized as part of the 2014 cultural program celebrating 600 years of diplomatic relations between Turkey and Poland will take place at the 19th Istanbul Theater Festival.
The festival will also host the world premiere of the Opole Theater’s play “Proust-Pamuk-Bellek,” which was written and adapted by Krzysztof Garbaczewski and Emre Koyuncuoğlu from Marcel Proust and Orhan Pamuk’s novels. The program of the festival also contains 35 local theater, dance, and performance companies that will be performed before audiences for the first time. Among the performances will be “Hamlet Machine,” “The Empire Builders,” “Montserrat,” “The Last Unicorn,” “The Adventures of Latif Effendi: The First Ottoman Vampire” and others.
The “Oyun Salonu” project, which came to life through the collaboration of the staff of Salon and the Istanbul Theater Festival, will also continue during the festival. Four young theater companies’ plays will be performed at Salon as part of “Oyun Salonu.”
Other festival attractions
The 19th Istanbul Theater Festival will also host free Q&A sessions, screenings, performances and workshops attended by famous guests and experts. Applications for workshops will be taken from the application form through the website tiyatro.iksv.org, starting April 2. This year, the festival catalogue, released as the festival begins, will be published as a book as part of the educational project “The Festival Is Developing Script Writers.” Dr. Evren Barın Eğrik, the publication coordinator of the festival, will be conducting the project.
The festival will take place at different venues throughout the city, such as the Bisahne, Cevahir Stage, DOT, Haldun Taner Stage, ikincikat-karaköy, Kenter Theater, Moda Stage, Harbiye Muhsin Ertuğrul Stage, Sainte Pulcherie French High School, Salon, Şişli Blackout, Üsküdar Studio and Üsküdar Tekel.
The press conference announcing the lineup was hosted by Yekta Kopan and included speeches by Aygaz General Manager Yağız Eyüboğlu, Opet General Manager Cüneyt Ağca, Tüpraş General Manager Yavuz Erkut and Istanbul Theater Festival Director Leman Yılmaz, in addition to Eczacıbaşı.
Tickets for the festival go on sale March 8.