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Alexandria Forum for Contemporary & Independent Theatre

Alexandria Forum for Contemporary & Independent Theatre is a Non-profit initiative, based in Alexandria.

The Forum works on the creation of a base of dialogue between the independent theatre groups in Alexandria and the Mediterranean Sea and Europe, making it the first of its kind, and we have chosen Alexandria as an address mainly because of its history, important heritage and meaning of the meeting between Mediterranean and Europe and co-existence among cultures, as we believe that theatre is a space for cooperation and understanding and not for competition.

The Forumworks on the organization of activities to support the independent movement and youth initiatives, building and developing their abilities, and provide training and advice on how to manage & develop the independent groups and non-governmental organizations working in the fields of arts, and the provision of information and available opportunities. Also, the forum works on the composition of an Alexandrian network which will be open to its Arab and Euro-Mediterranean perimeters, this network will include independent theatre groups and NGOs working in the fields of arts. This will support the communication between them and other entities and will provide media platform allows the participants in the network to identify themselves to others and present their achievements and display their activities and perform their current and future events.

The forum works also on the documentation of the independent movement and collects all studies & related articles. The forum will create a space for training and contemporary theatre as well.

Alexandria Forum for Independent Theatre isn’t coming to replace the really existing independent groups, organizations or any entity, but on the contrary, seeks to complement existing initiatives , build synergies among themselves , form partnerships , provide services, support communication, develop the independent theatre center and support the theatre and contemporary arts.

Why is this forum?

Independent theatre movement in Alexandria has began since the early nineties, the groups spread and their number increased after the start of the new millennium. Most of these groups consisted of young dramatists, especially the graduates of the department of Theatre, faculty of Arts, University of Alexandria. The movement since that time has recorded nearly fourteen independent theatre group. Some of these groups work on a regular basis since the beginning of its establishment, and some other work on an almost regular basis. These groups represent diverse artistic trends and variable working methods, so the action of these groups had enriched tremendously the movement not only in the Alexandrian theatre but also, in the Egyptian theatre scene as a whole. So that the independent groups festival, hosted by Al- Hanager center, established part of it in Alexandria, beginning of the year 2006.

However, the movement is threatened to stop or to shrink as a result of the lack of adequate space for training and the lack of well-equipped exhibition spaces as well, especially as some of these groups have contemporary trends in the theatre .and as a result of the existence of this movement away from the capital, they suffer from lack of media interest, critical follow-up and the weakness of the sources of funding if not absence of it. In order to keep going, these groups need to further training, especially that associated with administration, new techniques and modern multi-artistic elements in the contemporary theatre that support the evolution of the work of artists working in this movement.

The objectives of the Forum:

- Raise awareness about the independent movement in Alexandria & Egypt.
- Increase attention on the alternative theatre and the contemporary performing arts.
- Provide services to independent artists in Alexandria
- Building partnerships between the independent artists & groups and the international networks, festivals and forums, which are concerned with contemporary theatre and building links & bonds between artists that may allow having co operations in production and training.
- Documenting the movement of the independent theatre in Alexandria
- Media coverage
- Giving the support and acquainting people with contemporary art forms like modern dancing, digital arts and street theatre.

Areas of work of the Forum:

• Design training programs for artists in Alexandria
• building audience and publicizing the different independent theatre events
• follow up the independent theatre movement critically and also in media.
• assess the motion of the theatrical movement and studying the market & the audience.




Ndèye Mané TOURÉ
Alexandre Cubizolles/PIXEL 13