International Exchanges

IFTR Annual Conference 2019 opens in Shanghai

8 July 2019

IFTR Annual Conference 2019 opens in Shanghai

First IFTR Annual Conference in China & Nearly 600 Chinese and Foreign Participants  

On the afternoon of 8 July, the Annual Conference 2019 of International Federation for Theatre Research (IFTR 2019 Shanghai Conference) opened in the Friendship Hall of the Shanghai Exhibition  Center. The conference is hosted by the Shanghai Theatre Academy (STA). The annual conference of IFTR is known as the “Olympics” of theatre research. This is the first time that IFTR has held this significant event of worldwide theatre research in China (also the second time after once in Turkey) since its establishment.

Chen Qun, Vice Mayor of Shanghai, Yang Weiren, Deputy Inspector of the Shanghai Education and Health Work Party Committee and Director of the International Exchange Department of the Shanghai Municipal Education Commission, Jean Graham-Jones, President of IFTR, all members of the IFTR Executive Committee, members of STA’s Party and administrative leadership teams, and nearly 600 Chinese and foreign scholars from more than 40 countries and regions, including Britain, Bulgaria, Italy, France, Germany, the United States and Australia and so on (including nearly 500 foreign experts and scholars), attended the opening ceremony of the conference. The opening ceremony was presided over by Yang Yang, Vice President of STA.

At the opening ceremony, Vice Mayor Chen Qun, on behalf of the Shanghai Municipal People's Government, expressed the warm congratulations on the convening of the conference and extended the sincere welcome to all the distinguished guests from afar. Xie Wei, Party Secretary of STA, delivered a speech on behalf of STA as the host organization. Jean Graham-Jones, President of IFTR, gave the opening remarks. Hanna Korsberg, Vice President of IFTR, announced the winners of the New Scholars’ Prize and the Helsinki Prize for 2019, and presented the awards to the winners. This year, these two prizes were awarded to Cara Brophy-Browne of the Trinity College Dublin and Rina Tanaka of the Meiji University respectively. Huang Changyong, President of STA, delivered a keynote speech entitled "Shanghai: Building Itself into the Capital of Performing Arts in the Process of Modernization."

IFTR 2019 Shanghai Conference will be held from 8 to 12 July for five days. The conference received more than 600 papers submitted by experts and scholars from all over the world, from which more than 500 papers were eventually selected for participation in the conference, including more than 450 overseas papers and more than 60 domestic papers.

The main theme of the conference is Theatre, Performance and Urbanism. The sub-themes include "Symbiosis of Theatres and Cities", "Tradition, Urbanism and Theatrical Negotiation", "Theatre and Society", "Evolving Urbanity and Theatres", "Theatre and Urban Space", "Theatre as a Cultural Industry", "New Media, New Life and New Theatrical Space", "Art Venues’ Culture and Economy", "Theatrical Festivals: Past and Present Century", "Theatre and Cultural Policies", "Performing Cultural Heritage for Sustainable Development", "Selling Dreams - Theatre, Trade and Tourism", "Multiculturalism and Theatrical Diversity", "Theatre Aesthetics", "Radical Dramaturgy" and many other topics.

On and around the main theme of the conference, the conference will carry out academic exchanges in various forms, such as keynote speeches, panel discussions, workshops, performances and so on. It is of great significance to build an academic platform for extensive exchanges and in-depth discussions among scholars around the world for promoting the progress of theatre research worldwide, strengthening academic exchanges and leading the trend of world theatre, as well as enhancing China’s cultural and academic input and increasing the influence of Chinese theatre researchers in the academic field of global theatre research.