Troupes from Italy, Greece, Turkey, Armenia and Iraq will attend the festival opening on Wednesday in Hamedan to perform their latest productions, the organizers have announced.

Speaking in a press conference held last week, Amir Mashhadi-Abbas, the president of the festival, gave no details about the troupes.

He lamented the lack of respect and financial support for  the festival from officials.

Due to the deep  economic recession facing the country, he said that it was anticipated that the government funds would be used for "the professional festival'' instead of other "amatur events''.

The budget for organizing the festival is allocated by the General Office for Dramatic Arts of the Ministry of Culture and Islamic Guidance, The office has set a budget of 18 billion rials (about $56,250 based on Iran's free-market exchange rate: $1= 320, 000 rials).

"The budget is nowhere near enough to cover the cost of an international festival; with this amount of money one can only stage a low-budget theatrical prodution," Mashhadi-Abbas said.

He added the officails of Hamedan Province have also allocated more 32 billion rials to the festival.

The motto of this year's festival is "Theater, the Flying of the Butterflies' Imaginations''.

"By this motto, the festival intends to support creative artistic works and train the future generation based on Iranian-Islamic principles," Mashhadi-Abbas noted.

Theater troupes will attend rallies and carnivals in some provincial capitals, celebrating the opening of the festival on Tuesday the same day as Hamedan.

Ten theaters in Hamedan will be playing host to over 70 performances, which will be put on stage by Iranian troupes during the festival.

In addition, troupes will give dozens of open-air performances across the city, and several Iranian and Italian experts will hold workshops.

Mashhadi-Abbas said that the festival also intends to bring joy to millions of Iranian children, and added the presence of international personalities would give the thespians in the city an opportunity to raise their knowledge of theater.

The festival is scheduled to pay tribute to theater expert Mohammadreza Alvand and actor Karim Akbari, who died of COVID-19.

In addition, the stage directors Maryam Kazemi and Mehdi Farshidi-Sepehr will reveive lifetime achievement awards.

The 27th edition of the International Theater Festival for Children and Young Adults will wrap up on June 27 with announcing winners.

Source:Tehran Times