Istanbul theater festival lifts curtains on stage, online

Istanbul theater festival lifts curtains on stage, online

Istanbul theater festival lifts curtains on stage, online

The 25th Istanbul Theater Festival is preparing to host plays, performances and dance shows from Turkey and abroad from Oct. 22 and Nov. 20.

With the slogan “Theater In These Trying Times,” the festival has set out to bring a breath of fresh air into both the world of theater and theater lovers, presenting a program of mostly new productions that look at the world, which is in search of a new normal, through the lens of theater.

The festival will host 25 national and international in-person and online performances. While online screenings will be accessible from throughout Turkey, in-person performances of the festival will meet the audiences at Alan Kadıköy, Atlas 1948 Movie Theater, Profilo Cultural Centre West Main Stage, Duru Ataşehir, Moda Stage Theater, Caddebostan Cultural Centre, Gazhane Museum, Yapı Kredi bomontiada, DasDas and Zorlu PSM.

Online screenings will be available at throughout the festival.

Eleven physical and online productions from abroad will meet theatergoers with the support of the festival’s international productions performance sponsor, ENKA Foundation, whereas 14 local productions will have their premieres at the festival.

Free-of-charge side events such as panels, workshops, talks and reading theaters, held within the scope of the festival’s Learning and Training Program, will accompany the festival.

This year the Honorary Awards of the festival will be presented to writer and academic Professor Ayşegül Yüksel and Italian director Pippo Delbono.

Delbono will receive his award on Nov. 4 at Zorlu PSM following his play La Gioia.

Festival program

This year the 25th Istanbul Theater Festival will present a rich program extending from in-person productions to online screenings, from “ear theater” to children’s theater and from movie screenings to complimentary panels, talks and reading theaters over the course of one month.

Nine national productions will be staged for the first time in Turkey at the Istanbul Theater Festival. The Cherry Orchard, directed by Mehmet Birkiye of the Kocaeli Municipality Theater, will have its Istanbul premiere at the festival. In the national program, there are also three “ear theaters” that can be listened to online.

The festival features three widely acclaimed international productions from the Netherlands, France and Italy, along with seven foreign productions that can be watched online.

As part of the festival this year, the Gazhane Museum will host the dance show from France Waterfloor, which can be attended free of charge, while a special screening of Oedipus by the British director Robert Icke will be held on the silver screen of the Atlas 1948 Movie Theater.

Continuing its collaboration with the Netherlands consulate-general in Istanbul, which began in 2020, the Istanbul Theater Festival presents a selection of three works from the Netherlands.

Also, the festival’s collaboration with Golden Mask Russian Performing Arts Festival, which began in 2018, continues this year with three productions included in the festival’s online program. “The Bear,” “Boris” and “Children of The Sun” will be among the shows.

One of the novelties in this edition of the festival is the section titled “There Is A Woman Behind This,” which brings together the plays that have been entirely created by women and aims to render visible the women’s production. Four plays under this theme heading will be brought to the audience.

This year the festival opens on Oct. 22 with Zerrin Tekindor’s performance of the play titled “Dust,” written by Murat Mahmutyazıcıoğlu and directed by Hira Tekindor. Zerrin Tekindor will play all the characters in the play that moves from the 1960s to the present day, narrating the story of Handan and her mother Feri as Handan remembers her.

The event will also present four productions for children.

Tickets for the festival will be available as of Sept. 24.