Fill out your data to get our latest news and publications

    Six surprising facts about Bogota’s Ibero-American Theater Festival

    Colombia’s capital is well-known for its appreciation of the arts and that includes theater, known in Colombia as tablas or […]

    Colombia’s capital is well-known for its appreciation of the arts and that includes theater, known in Colombia as tablas or ‘woods’ thanks to the wooden stages on which actors perform. Every two years the Ibero-American Theater Festival is held in Bogota and, as the capital eagerly awaits opening night on March 11, we offer you six surprising facts about this international extravaganza:

    It’s the world’s biggest theater festival

    Bogota’s Ibero-American Theater Festival is enormous, with 855 productions across more than 100 venues and spaces. It’s no wonder the festival has earned Bogota the nickname ‘World Capital of Theater’ within the industry. Actors and artists travel to the Colombian capital from every continent, with more than 100 international companies performing alongside 170 Colombian ones. This year’s special guest country is Mexico.

    It was founded by an adopted Colombian

    Actress and businesswoman Fanny Mikey founded the festival in 1988, alongside Teatro Mayor director Ramiro Osorio. Fanny was born in Buenos Aires in 1930 but moved to Colombia in 1958, after fleeing home at 16 because her family did not support her dreams. She fell in love with Cali first, before moving to Bogota where she also created the National Theater Foundation. Fanny, with her brightly-colored hair, was known as La Reina de las Tablas (Queen of the Boards) and died in Cali in August 2008.

    It celebrates Bogota’s birthday

    Fanny and Ramiro founded the festival in 1988 to celebrate 450 years since Bogota was founded. The idea was to promote theater’s diversity and the global performing arts scene, as well as ensuring tolerance and understanding between cultures and encouraging artistic development in Colombia. The festival has been held every two years since it was founded and celebrates its 15th installment this year.

    It has faith in Colombia

    The festival has had a slogan since its first edition. The first one, which attracted performers from more than 20 countries was ‘An act of faith in Colombia’ followed by ‘Ten years of faith in Colombia’ in 1998, when 37 countries participated. One of the most popular slogans was ‘In honor of Fanny Mikey’ two years after the actress’s death. This year’s festival slogan will be ‘The opening should be on the street’ to emphasize the importance of free theater for all.

    It’s all art

    The Ibero-American Theater Festival promotes every artistic discipline imaginable, including street theater, traditional theater, music concerts, ballet and other dance, storytelling, children’s theater, youth theater, art, cabaret, pantomime and circus, alongside lectures, workshops, conferences and trade shows.

    Bogota is its ideal home

    Colombia’s capital is the perfect place to host this festival. Not only are its citizens fond of the fine arts, the city itself is home to some 2,200 theater academies. This year 3,650 artists will appear on the capital’s stages with performances in venues including theaters, universities, parks, sports centers and shopping malls. The festival’s performances are expected to reach an audience of around three million people.

    For more information visit

    Center stage at the world’s biggest theater festival? Live this experience in Colombia. If you liked this article please feel free to share it on Facebook, twitter, LinkedIn, Google+ or any of your social networks.

    You may also enjoy:

    Where to see classical music in Colombia 

    Homes of the stars: Five historic colombian houses 

    Five colombian libraries that have their own story to tell

    Rate this post
    Artículos recomendados
    Tejo, Games, Turmequé, Colombian games

    Colombia’s most beloved sports: Tejo and Chaza

    Football isn’t the only sport that Colombians go mad for. Across the country, local sports that have been played for...
    Bandeja paisa, Food, Colombian dishes, Colombian food, Antioquia

    Dish of the Day: A Colombian treat for every day of the week

    Colombia is a food-loving nation that is proud of its traditional tastes and treats. Here we present a delicious Colombian dish...
    Cartagena Film Festival

    Cartagena Film Festival: Films, culture and magical sabrosura

    The walled city of Cartagena is the warm and tropical setting of the International Cartagena Film Festival. This annual film...
    christmas light colombia

    9 reasons that make Christmas in Colombia unique

    Christmas in Colombia revolves around family, traditions, and the delicious variety of food that is not to be missed. Waking...

    What are Colombian people like?

    What are Colombian people like? Boundless enthusiasm, charming cultural quirks and a distinctive way of speaking. These are just some...
    Bailes Colombianos, culture, colombians, dance

    All about Colombia: its magic ingredient through Colombia Lessons

    Know all about Colombia, one of the world’s most diverse countries, with a vibrant culture and stunning natural wealth.
    colombian trees

    Five trees that support Colombia’s stunning biodiversity

    Trees are Colombia’s most important plant. They provide us with oxygen, stabilize our soil, absorb our carbon and shelter and...
    colombian art

    Experience the best of Colombian art in Bogota, Medellin and Cartagena

    Colombian art is booming, with more than 40 art galleries opening across the country in the past few years, several...
    fashion shows in Colombia

    What are the biggest fashion shows in Colombia?

    Events like Bogotá Fashion Week, Colombiamoda and Plataforma K have made Colombia a regional leader in textiles and leatherwork.
    Teatro Jorge Eliécer Gaitán, Jorge Eliecer Gaitan, classical music, Bogotá, Colombia

    Where to see classical music in Colombia

    Colombia is a famously musical country, but with all that cumbia, vallenato, ranchera, salsa, merengue and pop, you might be...