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Imaginarius – International Street Theatre Festival

Imaginarius – International Street Theatre Festival CC BY-NC-ND

The 13th edition of  Imaginarius – International Street Theatre Festival will take over the city of Santa Maria da Feira between  24 and 26 May. For three days, more than 400 artists from 16 countries will occupy and reinvent the public spaces of the “Capital of Street Arts” with 48 projects, 117 performances – all with free entrance – 25 national premières, 19 world premières and five self-creations.

Imaginarius – International Street Theatre Festival

Artists from 16 countries in Portugal’s largest Street Arts festival

The diversity of artistic languages is one of the marks of this edition, with a strong emphasis on the visual arts component, with the creation of a cork sculpture – Diorama Cork Faktory – by visual artist Vhils, paying tribute to the County’s cork industry. One should also highlight the diversity of the 16 participating countries (Portugal, Spain, Germany, Slovenia, France, Brazil, Argentina, Austria, Angola, UK,  Czech Republic, Holland, Norway, Italy, South Africa and  Ireland), as well as of the programmed formats and contents.

As a consolidated creation structure, during its 13th edition  Imaginarius will be presenting  19 world premières and five creations, three of them from scratch: Baile das Bicycletas, by Patrick Murys and Casa da Música, in a Imaginarius and Festival do Norte coproduction; Urban Ballets – Blast, in a Imaginarius, Carnaval de Deux Rives (Bordeaux, France),  Belfast Carnival –  Northern Ireland and National Arts Festival (Grahamstown – South Africa); and Travessia, by Argentina’s Edith Scher and Omar Gasparini. In these and other of the festival’s projects, local communities have an increasingly active and critical participation in the creation processes: this edition will feature more than a thousand community participants.

In this edition, Imaginarius will contemplate 12 co-productions and programming partnerships, resulting in genuine networking – local, regional, national and international.  Bodies in Urban Spaces, by the Willi Dorner company, is a good example of coproduction with the Serralves Foundation. A project whose cast and architectures are shared by the cities of Oporto e Santa Maria da Feira.

Mais Imaginarius – a space open to young creators from all over the world – is the festival’s frontline, where creators can take chances, privilege experimentation and informed artistic practices. In this edition, 23 projects from eight countries will be presented, in the fields of Graffiti, Performance, Music, Theatre, Circus, Installation e Dance.

The world we live in inspires “The Imagined Europe” as the main subject of the International Conference on Arts and Public Space, as well as the world première of Jangada de Pedra byTeatro O Bando, and the inquisitive Ginkgo, by German company Antagon Theater AKTion.

“And it is precisely because we are living this moment that this festival is necessary. For its will to transform, for the space open to creation, for the occupation of public space, for the full exercise of the right to access cultural fruition, for its educational, community, economical, urban and tourism impact on our territory”, underlined the festival’s artistic director, Hugo Cruz.


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