Biennale Theatre 2016

The Venice International Theatre Festival is back!

From 26 July 2016 to 14 August 2016

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The 44th edition of the Biennale Theatre will take place from 26 July to 14 August 2016: Venice is ready to host a rich program of events, activities and workshops on a festival that represents a time of sharing between artists, scholars and enthusiasts!

Directed by the celebrated Spanish author Àlex Rigola, the Venice International Theatre Festival presents 10 performances and 17 workshops, 9 of which, at the end of the workshops of the Biennale Theatre, will offer their work to the public, as will the four companies that are working in the city for the entire duration of the theatre festival in Venice. In addition to this, the Biennale Teatro 2016 program offers everyone the opportunity to take part in 19 meetings with the great artists participating in the festival.

Continuing the direction taken in recent editions, Àlex Rigola wants to offer a high-impact theater, involving today's matters in the re-interpretation of the classics. He brings on stage episodes of real life or people who have experienced first-hand the plot and calls for the direct intervention of the public who will become co-star in the shows of the theatre Biennale Venice.

Rigola is also continuing the successful integration of performances and workshops which sees actors, playwrights and directors become masters of the young artists selected to take part in the Biennale College Theatre. The project, that has been successfully developed in other sectors of the Venice Biennale, sees emerging artists work side by side to great teachers of international fame, offering them a real possibility of professional and personal growth.

The full schedule of the Venice theatre shows of the Biennale Teatro 2016 will stage major international artists and companies already protagonists of the Biennale College Theatre in past years:

  • Baro d'Evel Cirk, an emerging multidisciplinary circus company, will transport the audience at the Venice Theatre Festival into a fantasy world: an imaginary tribe of dancers, actors and acrobats, plus horses, parrots and a crow, will showcase 'Bestias', a show that brings to light both what is most instinctive and savage in us and the intelligence and emotions of animals, to highlight the fragile and tender bonds that are formed between humans and animals. 26/27/28 July 9.00 pm - VEGA Science and Technology Park
  • The playwright, director and choreographer Pascal Rambert brings to Venice 'Clôture de l'amour', two different points of view to tell the violence of the end of a love. The show has already been highly acclaimed in Japan, the US, Russia and Croatia! July 28 8.00 pm - Teatro alle Tese Arsenale in Venice
  • Roger Bernat presents in Venice 'Please, continue' (Hamlet) in collaboration with the Dutch artist Yan Duyvendak. Hamlet becomes a young drifter who killed the father of his ex-girlfriend and the show showcases the trial: the theatre is transformed into a courtroom where prosecutors, judges and lawyers prosecute Hamlet, accused of the murder of Ophelia's father and the spectators assume the role of the jury. The end result, different from time to time, is a contemplation of the problem of the continuing search for truth. July 30 8.00 pm - Teatro alle Tese Arsenale in Venice
  • Oskaras Koršunovas brings to Venice a stripped and purified version of 'Seagull' by Chekhov: no lake, no seal and no summer theatre, only the actors and spectators are retained. 2 August 8.00 pm - Teatro alle Tese Arsenale in Venice
  • Spinoza's work is at the basis of Romeo Castellucci's 'Ethica (Nature and origin of the mind)', a five-stage action cycle. The action in Biennale Teatro 2016 program was actually started in the Biennale College during the workshop held by Castellucci in 2013. 3 August at 7.00 pm and 9.00 pm - Tese of Soppalchi Venice Arsenal
  • 'Bob', a tribute to the great director Bob Wilson, author of the avant-garde theatre that has greatly influenced the contemporary American theater. It has been revisited in 2011 by Anne Bogart who brings to the Biennale Teatro Venice 2016 a very special immaterial show made up of movements, lights and sounds. August 4 8.00 pm - Teatro alle Tese Arsenale in Venice
  • For the first time in Italy, Jan Klata, great director and playwright nicknamed dj theater for his speed in mixing scenes, movements, music, lights and images, is participating in the Theatre Biennale Venice with his latest show 'King Lear', awarded at home as best 2015 Shakespearean rewriting. The story is set in the present time, on the banks of the Tevere ... Music of James Leyland Kirby and choreography by Macko Prusak. August 6 8.00 pm - Teatro alle Tese Arsenale in Venice
  • A much-appreciated return for Christiane Jathay, after the debut at the Festival of Theatre in Venice in 2015, with 'The Three Sisters' set in modern Brazil: 'How about going to Moscow?' Moscow is seen as utopia, a turn towards something completely new ... Linking masterfully theatrical and cinematic perspective, the show seems to address the question 'Can we change?' to the public. August 8 8.00 pm - Teatro alle Tese Arsenale in Venice
  • Valeria Raimondi and Enrico Castellani from Babilonia Teatri, winners of the Silver Lion of the Biennale Theatre 2016, take inspiration from life and stage it: 'Pinocchio', repeated at the Venice International Theatre Festival, tells the story of three contemporary Pinocchio, played by the non-actors of the Association 'Luke's friends', people who have lived experiences of coma in first person and still bear the scars. A tender and extremely realistic performance in which the tale of Pinocchio is used to analyze the lives of everyone. August 11 8.00 pm - Teatro alle Tese Arsenale in Venice
  • Fabrice Murgia with 'Le chagrin d'ogre' tells two parallel stories - Bastian Bosse, the young man who killed his school mates and professors before taking his own life and Natascha Kampusch, escaped from her torturer and jailer after ten years of imprisonment - to investigate the adolescent universe and its image, especially the uneasiness that, at this important time of transition to adulthood, can drag you to the brink of drifting. August 13 8.00 pm - Teatro alle Tese Arsenale in Venice


Undisputed names of the international theatre scene will lead the 17 workshops of the 2016 Biennale College Theatre, to create 9 short performances that will be juxtaposed to the performances listed above.

  • The laboratories 'towards the creation' will be conducted by Roger Bernat, Pascal Rambert, Stefan Kaegi, Jan Klata and Fabrice Murgia;
  • Declan Donnellan, Golden Lion for Lifetime Achievementat the 2016 Biennale Theatre Venice, Oskaras Koršunovas, Anne Bogart and Willem Dafoe will work on the actor and the acting;
  • the Baro d'Evel company will introduce the young students of the Biennale College to the languages of circus;
  • Romeo Castellucci and Christiane Jatahy will work on directing;
  • Martin Crimp, Simon Stephens and Mark Ravenhill, known advocates of in-yer-face of the British theater, will carry out at the Biennale College Theatre in 2016 three workshops of dramaturgy, which will complement the one held by Eva-Maria Voigtländer, on the typically German dramturg.


The Biennale Teatro 2016 program also includes the shows of the four theatre companies stationed in Venice during the Venice International Theatre Festival: Toni Servillo with United Theatres (July 31 20.30 - Teatro Piccolo Arsenale), Enrico Casagrande and Daniela Francesconi of Motus (August 3 19.00 and 21.00 - Sale d'Armi of the Arsenal of Venice), Angelica Liddell with Atra Bilis Teatro (12 August at 19.00 and 21.00 - Tese dei Soppalchi Venice Arsenal), Valeria Raimondi and Enrico Castellani of Babylon Theatres (August 14 hours 20.30 - Teatro Piccolo Arsenale).

In Venice the Theatre Biennale has become a not-to-be-missed event for both artists and theatre lovers ... not only for the innovative shows that every year it offers, but also because it represents a crossroads of experiences to share, training meetings and exchanges of visions, key ingredients to fully understand the world of theatre and art in general.

The locations of the biennale Venice theatre events have been confirmed - Teatro Piccolo Arsenale, Teatro alle Tese, Sale d'Armi e Tese dei Soppalchi - and other places of Venice and the nearby mainland - VEGA Science and Technology Park in Marghera, the Hall of Columns of Ca 'Giustinian and La Fenice.

The Venice International theatre festival awaits you from July 26 to August 14! Shows, meetings and workshops: book now one of our hotels in Venice and immerse yourself in the rich program of the biennale teatro 2016!

By Insidecom Editorial Staff