Willkommen, bienvenue, welcome: to the 2019 Voila! Europe Theatre Festival.
Amidst the continuing uncertainty about the UK’s relationship with its continental neighbours, Voila! Europe is proud to dedicate our programme to keeping the Channel open, promoting cultural exchange, and offering outward-looking Londoners the chance to encounter unusual stories and perspectives from their fellow Europeans.
We don’t decide on a theme for the festival in advance, but the hundreds of proposals we receive from artists always guide us towards what’s happening in the zeitgeist, and what are the most pressing challenges we face as Europeans. Democracy, migration, family, burnout, truth, history, the future are popular as ever… and this year, the environmental crisis emerged as the overarching theme of the festival. The programme spans comedy, physical theatre, music, new writing, improvisation, robotics, clowning, satire, interactive performance, circus, and more, showcasing the wide variety of styles that ‘European theatre’ can encompass.
Voila is a multilingual festival, with Croatian, Dutch, French, Greek, Italian, Korean, Norwegian, Polish, Portuguese, Spanish, Swedish, Turkish, Arabic and Welsh being spoken on stage. Most shows in the programme are mainly in English with other languages used in ways that are accessible to English-speakers. Some shows use live simultaneous translation by bilingual actors, well-placed summaries in English, or even projected live machine-translation. Several shows in the festival transcend language
Whatever may happen on the 31st of October, you know you can join us in November to celebrate the border-busting power of the arts. Try something new with our double-bill deals and catch two shows in one night. Strike up a conversation in the theatre bar or just listen to the many accents and languages around you. Let’s keep London a European city.