From May 25 to 30, 2021, the citywide Berlin Performing Arts Festival will present over 60 productions ranging across all genres of the independent performing arts. For one week, the sixth edition of the festival, which is organized by LAFT Berlin –Berlin State Association for the Independent Performing Arts e.V. each year, will showcase the diversity of the independent performing arts community with artistic work from the fields of performance, dance, music theater, figure and object theater, contemporary circus, children’s and youth theater and much more. Digital and hybrid formats, audio walks and open-air events invite the audience to explore the city and, in the light of the pandemic, have safe encounters in digital space.
The heart of the festival is formed by Contributions from the Community, where a vital and solidary independent performing arts community presents itself as it discovers, tests out and conquers new artistic spaces. The tremendous diversity of the community is clearly evident in the submissions made by the independent performance venues together with the artists and groups. The spatial separation from the audience and the continuously streaming digital contact provoke other spaces for negotiation. Seldom has the collective body yearned so much for contact and touch. This yearning is reflected in the variability, vibrancy and fragility of a schedule of programming that asks: what does the space we live in look like?
With Introducing..., the festival provides a platform for newcomers to Berlin’s independent performing arts community. Productions will be presented that work creatively with the conditions of the pandemic and find new artistic methods for safely bringing audience and artists into contact. Out of nearly 100 submissions, the Berlin Performing Arts Festival as well as the four cooperating venues Ballhaus Ost, HAU Hebbel am Ufer, Sophiensæle and TD Berlin have selected four productions and, during this year’s edition of the festival, invite audiences to get to know four artist groups and their productions. This means getting into the car with Kristina + Karolina Dreit, Anna Trzpis-McLean for their installation Fashion Show: Working Class Daughters, setting off on a digital scavenger hunt with the paranormal φeer group and their production Befriending Ghosts, simply choosing your own family with the cmd+c Company and their film adaption Family of the Year and to be asked by Eleganz aus Reflex and their film: Red or dead?
On the Audio Tour of the Performance Venues, interested members of the audience can become acquainted with the diverse locations of the independent performing arts community. The audio tour will give an impression of how it feels to work behind closed doors without an audience. The individual contributions that make up the tour can be listened to directly on location at the performance venues, while walking between venues or online on the festival website.
In the publication Andere Räume (Other Spaces), which will be available from the publisher Verlag Theater der Zeit beginning in mid-April, 33 of Berlin’s independent performing arts venues are profiled. With this, the editorial is making a first attempt to depict the independent spaces for the performing arts in all of their variety. All plans can be realized under all possible conditions that could be put in place to fight the pandemic, ranging from analog with changed protective measures to purely digital events as well as hybrids in between. After all, the form does not determine the content.
ALL TICKETS WILL BE SOLD BY THE PERFORMANCE VENUES. THE COMPLETE SCHEDULE OF PROGRAMMING AS WELL AS ADDITIONAL INFORMATION ARE AVAILABLE AT: WWW.PERFORMINGARTS-FESTIVAL.DE
The Berlin Performing Arts Festival is organized by LAFT Berlin and is funded by the State of Berlin, Senate Department for Culture and Europe. The 2021 PAF Campus program is financed by the #TakePart program of Fonds Darstellende Künste using funds provided by the German Federal Government Commissioner for Culture and the Media. FESTIVALFRIENDS is made possible by the program »Verbindungen fördern (Promoting Connections)« of the German Federal Association of the Independent Performing Arts using funds provided by the German Federal Government Commissioner for Culture and the Media.