“In a world where you can be anything . . .”

April 15th—May 15th, 2020

IOTF is an annual online theatre festival, showcasing the work of diverse global artists. Now, in its second year, over the course of a month, IOTF will present 25 different productions and films from a range of international companies, including Schaubühne, Stanislavsky Electrotheatre, Reckless Sleepers, and English Touring Theatre. Iconic productions to be screened include Enemy of the People (dir. Thomas Ostermeier), (A)pollonia (dir. Krzysztof Warlikowski), and Lenin (dir. Milo Rau).

All productions are free to watch, wherever in the world you are.

When we launched the 2019 festival, the world felt like a very different place. 2020 has brought exceptionally difficult times with those in the creative industries hit particularly hard by the repercussions of the COVID-19 pandemic. We hope that this online festival offers a space for audiences to congregate (albeit digitally!) in looking towards better and more hopeful times. Our theme of transformation and resistance – ‘in a world where you can be anything…’ – aims to create an online space that blurs geographical boundaries, rejects simplifications about borders and national identities and, most crucially, brings us together as a community to think about what it means to be human.

The 2020 festival creates a digital place for exploring multiple definitions of theatrical space. In our main programme, we are delighted to be hosting 23 productions from a wide and diverse range of international artists including Heiner Goebbels and Song of the Goat, and UK-based companies such as English Touring Theatre and Reckless Sleepers — these two presented with the support of Digital Theatre+.

Companies returning to the IOTF following last year’s run include Nowy Teatr, Left Bank Theatre, Zhengyi Ci Xilou and the Stanislavsky Electrotheatre — the latter presenting five productions including Psychosis, a Russian take on one of Sarah Kane’s most celebrated plays and Boris Yukhananov’s spectacular Octavia. Trepanation, a new opera by Dmitri Kourliandski, one of Russia’s most acclaimed composers. This year’s festival also welcomes the Schaubühne presenting five stagings, including Katie Mitchell’s Orlando and Thomas Ostermeier’s The Marriage of Maria Braun. LA-based City Garage and Beijing’s Quirky Moth Theatre are just two of the companies presenting exciting new work from the USA and China.

In our new ‘Beyond the Stage’ section, we will be screening three films that engage with the theatrical: Michelle Memran’s The Rest I Make Up (2018) about the legendary American writer-director Maria Irene Fornes; Ventura Pons’ The Virus of Fear (2016), a screen adaptation of Josep Maria Miró’s acclaimed play, Arquimedes’ Principle, and Elisabet Cabeza and Esteve Riambau’s Masks (2009), which observed the legendary Spanish actor Josep Maria Pou preparing to play Orson Welles onstage. These films invite us to reflect on what it means to create and adapt, and the ramifications that these processes have on how we perceive each other, in a world where we can be anything …

IOTF will be launched online from April 15th, 2020, through May 15th, 2020. Audiences will be able to access the shows via the festival page at:



The International Online Theatre Festival 2020

The Theatre Times’ videoconferencing chat rooms will offer a series of talks and online events related to the screenings. is a global theatre portal. Since its launch in November 2016, has published over 3,700 articles covering theatre in over 90 countries and regions. With 32 thematic sections, more than 150 Regional Managing Editors, over 60 media partners around the world, and 60,000+ followers on social media, has grown to be the most far-reaching and comprehensive global theatre portal today. Follow us on Facebook and Twitter.

IOTF: The International Online Theatre Festival is presented in collaboration with Stanislavsky Electrotheatre, Schaubühne, Stage Russia, Ninateka and DigitalTheatre+. With the support of The Royal Central School of Speech and Drama, University of London, Emerson College, and all the companies who have given permission for their work to be screened and shared.

IOTF: The International Online Theatre Festival is curated by Maria Delgado, Executive Director of IOTF and Professor at The Royal Central School of Speech and Drama, University of London, and the team of co-Artistic Directors: Xunnan Li, Alma Prelec, and Gabriel Vivas-Martínez, doctoral candidates at Royal Holloway and Royal Central School of Speech and Drama, University of London.


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This post was written by the author in their personal capacity.The opinions expressed in this article are the author’s own and do not reflect the view of The Theatre Times, their staff or collaborators.

This post was written by The Theatre Times.

The views expressed here belong to the author and do not necessarily reflect our views and opinions.