The Festival

This year 2019, the Autumn Festival pays homage to the Portuguese artist Helena Almeida (1934 - 2018) who died last year. She is the aesthetic and philosophical heart and soul of this edition. It's been said of Almeida that she's "difficult to slot". She's not a photographer, a painter or sculptor; she doesn't do performance art and yet, she does them all at the same time. Her work opened up extraordinary experimental paths for audiences that enabled them to take an emotional trip towards that which lies ahead. Tinges of humour are visible throughout her creations, as well as traces of drama. This makes her work ambiguous and dual in nature, not just because of her free use of techniques but also because of the intangible backdrop of emerging disquiet. With her work, you're likely to crack a smile and in the next moment, feel a knot in the pit of your stomach. This dichotomy is a perfect illustration of our new Autumn Festival. What's coming is as entertaining as it is heartbreaking.

27 shows and more than ten stage experiences by artists and companies from eleven countries (Spain, Belgium, Argentina, France, Lithuania, Poland, Chile, Sweden, Switzerland, Italy and Israel) that constitute the offerings of Madrid's Autumn Festival in 2019, which returns to our stages from 15 November to 1 December for its 37th edition.

Five international premières, nine shows that make their début in Spain and another nine that are launched for the first time in Madrid, over 11 theatres. Autumn's dressed up in blue as we bring to you a programme that not only promotes theatre, contemporary dance and performance art, but also different and interesting formats such as visual theatre, installation art -stage or film-, music and documentary theatre. There are also creative seminars that end with exhibitions open to the public, conversations and meetups with creators, walks along the Paseo del Prado accompanied by stage creators and resident artists. We call this set of activities the AF Experiences.

The 37th edition of the Autumn Festival aims to once again bring some of the most bold and striking proposals of the contemporary international scene to the boards of Madrid, with indispensable names such as Maja Kleczewska, Milo Rau, Fabrizio Cassol, Alain Platel, Fernando Rubio, Teatro La-Resentida, Sergio Boris, Claudio Tolcachir, Massimo Furlan, Claire de Ribaupierre, Julien Mellano, Jo Strømgren, garçongarçon and Markus Öhrn. It's also an ode to resistance in its goal to display and advocate for the work of companies who have been at the vanguard of Spanish theatre for a whopping three decades, such as Matarile, Mal Pelo and El Canto de la Cabra. The programme also includes new names of note in Spanish theatre such as Julián Fuentes Reta, Pont Flotant and [los números imaginarios]. Plus we have Spanish creators who work with the research and hybridisation of languages, such as Serrucho, or Patricia Ruz and Alberto Jiménez. The 37th Autumn Festival hosts the celebration of the Lorca 2019 Year with four shows that pay homage to the poet, by María Fernández Ache and Will Keen Ache, David Zinder, Sara Molina and Alex Peña. And it will also witness the farewell concert of Julia de Castro, one half of De La Purissima.

Once again, the 37th Autumn Festival has been sponsored by the Polish Institute of Culture in Madrid, the Institut Français and the Centro Danza Canal. This year, the Festival is also collaborating with the Teatros del Canal, the Teatro de La Abadía, La Casa Encendida, the Corral de Comedias in Alcalá de Henares, and Banco de Spain. Our heartfelt thanks to the Helga de Alvear Gallery (Madrid), the Helga de Alvear Foundation (Madrid - Cáceres), The Modern Collection of the Calouste Gulbenkian Museum (Lisbon) and the CA2M Dos de Mayo Art Centre (Móstoles, Madrid) for lending us the marvellous performative and photographic universe of Helena Almeida for our festival.

Moments of curiosity, magic and alienness. Creativity and professionalism. Creating connections with the audience. Encounters. Subtlety. Militancy. Ethics and aesthetics. Innovation and experimentation. Humour and poetry. Live creations. This is the 37th edition of the Autumn Festival. A contemporary look at the world. An intense and moving scene. Radical and playful. Tender and familiar. Feminist. Visceral and startling. Agile and fresh. Libertarian Complex and intense. Essential.

This year, we propose a festival where all audiences can feel at home. A festival with no generation gaps. A space for dialogue. A place inhabited by the best of national and international theatre. It's also our intention to be an international launch platform for Spanish theatre companies. In this new edition of the festival, we've sought to occupy non-theatre spaces related to art and daily life, to go on a unique drama date that Promotes culture. And also makes us want to leap on to the stage. To quote the creator Ana Vallés, one of the protagonists of our programme, "theatre's written on the boards". This 37th edition of the Autumn Festival, we invite you to experience it for yourselves.

Carlota Ferrer

Artistic Director of the 37th Autumn Festival of the Community of Madrid

The Team


Isabel Díaz Ayuso

Minister of Culture and Tourism
Marta Rivera de la Cruz

Vice-Minister of Culture and Tourism
Daniel Martínez Rodríguez

General Director of Cultural Promotion
Gonzalo Cabrera Martín

37th Autumn Festival

Artistic Director
Carlota Ferrer

Artistic Coordinator
Luisa Hedo

Mar López
Cristina Toledano

Public Relations
Pilar Estrela

Luisa Castiñeira
Lucía Martínez
Cristina Álvarez Cañas

Technical Team
David Benito
Antón Ferreiro
Cristina Bolívar
Roberto Baldinelli

Technical Producer
Julio Provencio

Graphic Designer
Carlos Malpartida

© Helena Almeida (1934 - 2018)
Cortesía de la Galería Helga de Alvear (Madrid), la Fundación Helga de Alvear (Madrid - Cáceres), el Museu Calouste Gulbenkian I Coleção Moderna (Lisboa) and el CA2M Centro de Arte Dos de Mayo (Móstoles, Madrid)


Logo Comunidad de Madrid

With the collaboration of:

Logo La Casa Encendida
Logo Teatros del Canal
Logo Teatro de La Abadía
Logo Corral de Comedias
Logo Museo Nacional del Prado

With the support of:

Logo Centro de Danza Canal
Logo Instituto Polaco de Cultura
Logo Institut Francais Madrid
Logo Goethe Institut
Logo Embajada de Suiza
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