Theatre Festivals, International Prestige, and National Heritage

Festival Curation in the Forcefield of International Prestige and National Heritage

Lonneke van Heugten | Supervisor Kati Rottger | University of Amsterdam 2011-2015

This research project focuses on the impact of theatre festivals as cultural identity mediators in-between international prestige and national heritage. Two developments fuel this question. Firstly, processes of Europeanization and globalization provoke a need for rearticulating what cultural identity means and ways of affirming it. The Dutch cultural and historical canon is one way of affirmation through official (artificial?) cultural memory. The second development is a renewed interest in different modes of transmission of history. Living or immaterial heritage and its importance for cultural identity formulated by UNESCO is an exponent of this consciousness. These developments open up a rethinking of theatre and especially internationally oriented theatre festivals as agents in cultural identity transmission.