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  • The animals and children took to the streets

    The animals and children took to the streets

    Suzanne Andrade & Paul Barritt / 1927 © Nick Flintoff

  • Refuse the hour

    Refuse the hour

    William Kentridge © John Hodgkiss

  • Los Santos Inocentes

    Los Santos Inocentes

    Heidi & Rolf Abderhalden / Mapa Teatro © Christian Altorfer

  • Die Kontrakte des Kaufmanns. Eine Wirtschaftskomödie

    Die Kontrakte des Kaufmanns. Eine Wirtschaftskomödie

    Nicolas Stemann / Thalia Theater © David Baltzer

  • Court of Honour of the Palais des Papes

    Court of Honour of the Palais des Papes

    © Christophe Raynaud de Lage / Festival d'Avignon

Founded in 1947 by Jean Vilar, the Avignon Festival is one of the biggest international festivals for contemporary live performance there is, each year in July attracting a large number of visitors from every generation (more than 130,000 tickets sold) to view around forty works of theatre and dance, as well as fine art and music.

Avignon, a city of theatre

An open-air venue, with the Court of Honour of the Palais des Papes at its centre (where Jean Vilar directed Shakespeare's King Richard the Second during the first ever Avignon Festival), year after year, for the duration of a month, Avignon turns into a city of theatre, transforming its rich architectural heritage into majestic and surprising performance venues.

The Festival's “associated artists”

Providing access to contemporary art is now, more than ever, at the heart of the Festival's priorities and its programme, helping to make this festival as rich in acts as it is. Since 2004, the festival's artistic direction has been involving one or two artists (choreographers, film-makers, writers, actors, dancers, etc.) in the preparation of each year's events. Before putting together the programme, the directors discuss with these “associated artists”, each year endowing the Festival with a different sensitivity and with a different viewpoint on the various arts on the scene.

 Avignon's OFF Festival

In addition to its official programme, Avignon's OFF Festival also enables a thousand additional companies to participate in the event in around a hundred different venues.