INTERNATIONAL ONLINE THEATRE FESTIVAL
The International Online Theater Festival is an annual event broadcasting international theater shows free and open to everyone around the world.
IOTF is a venue demonstrating the works of global artists and theater companies, as well as renowned filmmakers who have turned to the theater as a mode through which to explore process, craftsmanship, and performativity. In the span of one month, IOTF presents the shows by international theater artists and companies from around the world, turning to a platform for meetings between the global theater figures and the audience. Festival is free to participate and to watch. The goal here is to create an online environment that erases geographical boundaries and unites the theater community.
IOTF is a project by TheTheatreTimes.com. Its is aimed at "decolonization" of theater criticism and providing more access to the theater. IOTF allows for communication between artists, audiences and researchers through discussion panels and online festival topics, which always refer to some pressing social problem. In 2021, this is "Future Directions: R3". All productions and discussions were aimed at finding a way to redefining, reimagining and Renaissance of the XXI century theater, during the pandemic and after it. IOTF removes geographical, social, political and economic restrictions that arise due to the existing borders and the cost of travel. It offers a transnational and intercultural venue for the meetings of theater community. IOTF is an opportunity for performers to present their work to a new audience. For spectators, it is a chance to see renowned performances, innovative experiments and emerging artists just launching their careers. All these can be found in the "Drama Schools Reimagine" section. IOTF 2021 focuses on various trend-setting response actions to the Covid-19 pandemic. As the move to digital spaces has shaped all our lives the possibilities of using this new online space to engage audiences are refashioned. All the works in this year’s festival – from Chile’s Reminiscencia and the US/Russian chekhovOS /an experimental game/, to the UK’s A Feast in the Time of Plague and Ukraine’s Viňo – forge a path to the redefinition, reimagining and Renaissance of 21st century theatre. Season 2021 ended with a discussion of the theater's future with emerging artists. The main goal of IOTF is to create a transnational discursive space that would bring together theatre-makers and theatre lovers, facilitating global collaborative models, and generating opportunities for interaction and creative development amongst a wide network of international theatre-makers and theatergoers. The audience of the project can be anywhere, but IOTF creators are mainly committed to the viewers who are not able to attend offline events for any reason.
It's the third IOTF season which speaks of its relevance and potential. All the previous discussion panels and post-show talks were recorded and are still available online for free. Previous editions have included the work of acclaimed companies and theatres such as Complicité, Frantic Assembly, National Theater of Australia, Vakhtangov Theater, Heiner Goebbels and Song of the Goat, Reckless Sleepers, Grand Teatre del Liceu, Schaubühne and Stanislavsky Electrotheatre, and such iconic productions as A Disappearing Number, Things I Know To Be True and The Blue Bird trilogy. Featuring: Marta Górnicka, William Kentridge, Annie Dorsen, Thomas Ostermeier, Krzysztof Warlikowski, Milo Rau. In 2021, the project showcased and recorded Covid-19 pandemic-related experimental productions from 24 countries, including Brazil, Singapore, South Korea, the USA, Poland, Canada and China. There were six theme-based panels at the festival: Transmedia and Adaptation; Multilingual Theater; Directing Under Covid; Bodies, Space, Performance; Theater Futures; European Theater Under Covid. Artists, researchers and audiences from all over the world participated in the democratic debate about the theater. IOTF is a platform where various audiences, artists and theater lovers meet - no masks, no filters. As per local regional editors, native speakers and culture-bearers, IOTF is the reflection of the chorus of global theater environments. IOTF erases geographical, economic and socio-political differences. Platform is accessible to all artists and audiences, regardless of their ability to travel, creating a global network and community of artists and theatergoers. IOTF is free and open for its audience. In 2021, viewers had a chance to see 33 shows from 24 countries and 6 continents for free. They could also join live discussion panels with artists, and almost 5,000 people took part in them live on Facebook and Twitter. More than a million people participated in all three seasons of IOTF, both as viewers and participants of talks or interviews.