Theatrical Events, Politics and Culture


Throughout the world festivals are growing – in numbers, in size, in significance – and serve as spaces where aesthetic encounters, religious and political celebrations, economic investments and public entertainment can take place. In this sense, festivals are theatrical events.
This volume contains discussions of 14 diverse festival events from five continents across the globe, written by members of the IFTR/FIRT Working Group on the Theatrical Event, the same group that has produced the ground-breaking study Theatrical Events – Borders Dynamics Frames in 2004 (also published by Rodopi). The events discussed here range from traditional carnivals and festivals to more controversial theatre, dance and opera festivals, children’s festivals and community events, as well as saints’ and workers’ festivities. All of these constitute part of the local playing cultures and take on significant political roles, nationally and regionally.
The authors explore and extend the theoretical frames of reference for any contemporary discussion of theatrical events and festivals, in order to provide a new and fresh perspective on past and present festival culture across the globe.

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Jacqueline MARTIN: Preface – festival cultures
Vicki Ann CREMONA: Introduction – the festivalising process
Part One: Theatrical Events Festivalised
Willmar SAUTER: Festivals as theatrical events: building theories
Henri SCHOENMAKERS: Festivals, theatrical events and communicative interactions
Temple HAUPTFLEISCH: Festivals as eventifying systems
Part Two: Eventifying Theatre Festivals
Linda STREIT: The theatricality of the Verona Opera Festival
Georgia SEFFRIN: The Out-of-the-Box Festival of Early Childhood: fashioning the boutique festival for children
Temple HAUPTFLEISCH: In search of the rainbow: The Little Karoo National Arts Festival and the search for cultural identity in South Africa
Jacqueline MARTIN & Willmar SAUTER: Playing politics at the Adelaide Festival
Henri SCHOENMAKERS: Hybrid festivals. The Mickery Theatre: in search of a dramaturgy of fragmentation
Part Three: Theatre Festivals as National Events
David J. BUCH & Hana WORTHEN: Ideology in movement and a movement in ideology: the Deutsche Tanzfestspiele 1934
Farah YEGANEH: Iranian theatre festivalised
Shulamith LEV-ALADGEM: The Israeli National Community Theatre Festival, the real and the imagined
Willmar SAUTER: The values of a festival – the Swedish Theatre Biennale
Part Four: Festival Culture as Theatrical Events
Wendy CLUPPER: Burning Man: festival culture in the United States – festival culture in a global perspective
Matthias WARSTAT: Community building within a festival frame – working-class celebrations in Germany 1918-33
Christina NYGREN: Festivals in religious or spiritual contexts: examples from Japan, China, India and Bangladesh
Peter EVERSMANN: The Feast of Saint Nicholas in the Low Countries
Carolyn BAIN: Searching for Tennessee: performative identity and the theatrical event. Tennessee Williams/ New Orleans Literary Festival
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