Bühneninszenierung Ishvara © Zhang Yan

International "Theater der Welt" underway in Hamburg

45 global productions, 27 debuts and premieres staged under "harbour" theme

The 15th “Theater der Welt” opened Thursday in Hamburg marking the return of the International Theatre Institute’s festival (ITI) to the place of its genesis. The “Theater der Welt 2017” is presenting 330 events with 45 productions including 27 premieres and first performances under the theme “harbour” until June 11, 2017.

Cultural highlight follows opening of Elbphilharmonie

Speaking Thursday morning in Thalia and later in Baakenhöft, Olaf Scholz, Mayor of Hamburg, noted: “Hamburg is showing the biggest festival of its kind ever held in Germany. After the opening of the Elbphilharmonie, we are presenting yet another special cultural highlight in Hamburg. The ‘Theatre der Welt’ stands for abundance and diversity, unforgettable images and sounds as well as 18 days of discovery. It is synonymous with relevant theatre and shines a new light on the issues of our times.“ Dr. Carsten Brosda, Senator for Culture also gave a welcoming speech in Kampnagel.

Application submitted by Prof. Barbara Kisseler

Thalia Theatre is hosting the festival in collaboration with Kampnagel, funded by the Ministry of Culture of the Free and Hanseatic City of Hamburg, the Federal Foreign Office and the Federal Government Commissioner for Culture and the Media. Joachim Lux, Festival Director, Amelie Deuflhard, Sandra Küpper, András Siebold, Artistic Directors of the 2017 festival have developed the artistic programme. Hamburg submitted an application to host the festival led by Prof. Barbara Kisseler, the deceased, former senator for culture. Ivan Nagel, a German theatre scholar and critic, founded the “Theater der Welt” festival as “Theater der Nationen” in 1979. After a guest performance in 1989, Hamburg is now hosting the theatre festival for the third time.

This year’s “Theater der Welt” takes the harbour as inspiration and venue under the theme “Global meets Local”. The port is a gigantic hub of international trade and the scene of arrivals and departures tinged with poetic significance – wanderlust and homesickness as well as discovery. Thus, globalisation and trade, escape and migration will play big roles during the festival.

Artists from all over the world

The main theatre venues include the port, Thalia Theater and Kampnagel as well as Baakenhöft in HafenCity, the cocoa warehouse in the former Afrikaterminal, MS Stubnitz, Thalia Zelt and the Haven Festival Centre as well as the Elbphilharmonie, Oberhafen and places in HafenCity and the waterways. The festival will bring international artists in drama, dance, literature and visual arts, film and music from far-flung corners of the world such as Samoa, Sydney, Rio de Janeiro, Cairo, Damascus and New York together with local artists in Hamburg to host among others productions by Thalia und Kampnagel.

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