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In 2009, Chicago was the first city in the United States to plan a World Theatre Day celebration, leading the way for US engagement in this international event.  Now an annual tradition, World Theatre Day is an opportunity for Chicago theatre artists - and the city that loves them - to examine what it means to be art-makers and thought-leaders in a city ever-evolving as a global citizen.


Wednesday, March 27, 2013
Goodman Owen Theatre
170 N. Dearborn Street


This year we are excited to explore the importance of global dialogues and building and maintaining connections abroad by focusing on international work—specifically from European countries—being done in Chicago at the storefront level. Patrizia Acerra, Artistic Director of the International Voices Project; Bergen Anderson, Managing Artistic Director of Akvavit Theatre; Beata Pilch, Artistic Director of Trap Door; and Jacqueline Stone, Artistic Director of TUTA will discuss the unique opportunities and challenges faced in sourcing, producing and performing international work. From building relationships with artists, to translating new work, to planning an international tour, they will speak as to why exploring these works, cultures, and traditions are important to them and the greater Chicago community. Moderated by Kris Vire, Theater Editor, Time Out Chicago.

Please RSVP to krista@chicagoplays.com.

World Theatre Day was created in 1961 by the International Theatre Institute (ITI) as a means of celebrating the many contributions theatre practitioners and patrons make around the world - to arts and culture and to life writ large. Now in its 51st year, World Theatre Day is celebrated on six continents, and is a day to remember the power and responsibility of our globe’s theatre-makers and theatre-lovers. 

Each year's celebration includes a World Theatre Day statement: reflections about the art, craft, and value of theatre composed by someone "outstanding in theatre or outstanding in heart and spirit from another discipline." Past authors include Arthur Miller, Robert Lepage, Vaclav Havel, Dame Judi Dench, Augusto Boal, and John Malkovich.

This year's statement will be composed by Dario Fo.

Want to get involved? Here are a few suggestions for how you can celebrate:

The day itself falls on a Wednesday this year, but theatre-makers and lovers can extend the celebration during performances the weekend before, too: March 21, 22, 23, and 24!


  • Attend the World Theatre Day panel discussion at the Goodman Theatre.
  • Spread the word about World Theatre Day and the WTD statement via Facebook, Twitter (#WTD13), and other social media.
  • Change your profile image to the World Theatre Day logo on March 27.
  • Create your own World Theatre Day statement: why is theatre important to you? Why is it important to have a day to celebrate its contribution to our global society?

  • Add the World Theatre Day banner to your website, blogs, and e-blasts.
  • Share the WTD message with your patrons with a program stuffer or as part of your curtain speech.
  • Offer special discounted tickets on World Theatre Day, or during World Theatre Weekend.
  • Lead a special post-show discussion with your patrons, examining the importance of cultivating a global perspective as artists, patrons, and citizens of Chicago.

  • Be sure to take in a show during World Theatre Weekend!  You can see what's playing here at ChicagoPlays.
  • Spread the word to friends and family about WTD, and why you love theatre in Chicago.
  • Let your favorite companies know that you value their work – send them a Happy World Theatre Day message.