Italian, French troupes scratch Fajr gigs due to homeland COVID-19 rules

February 5, 2022 - 19:3

TEHRAN – The Fajr International Theater Festival announced on Saturday that two troupes from Italy and France have canceled their performances at the Iranian festival due to COVID-19 restrictions for departure from their country of origin.

“Other troupes from Bulgaria and neighboring countries have made no comment about the probable cancelation of their performances yet,” stated Hossein Mosafer Astaneh, president of the festival underway in Tehran and several other Iranian cities.

He gave no details about the troupes and denied the possibility of a virtual performance for the troupes.

“The troupes’ performances have totally been canceled, because we didn’t receive a complete production from them,” he noted.

“The Italian group was scheduled to produce their play exclusively for the Fajr festival, because they still are faced with many COVID-19 restrictions in their country. Consequently, they had to halt their project following the cancelation of their performance at the Fajr festival,” Mosafer Astaneh added.

“Organizing the international competition category is an opportunity for the festival and it’s a great pity for it to be canceled this year,” he noted when the festival called off the category in the 2021 edition.

Earlier last week, the Fajr theater festival said that it has canceled a workshop that director and actor Rui Frati, manager of the Theater of the Oppressed in Paris, was scheduled to hold during the festival due to COVID-19 restrictions in Iran. 

Minister of Culture and Islamic Guidance Mohammad-Mehdi Esmaeili said last week that theater halls across the country would restrict their audience size to 30% of capacity during the 40th Fajr International Theater Festival amid concerns over the spread of the Omicron variant of the Coronavirus.

He said that the decision was made by the National Headquarters for Coronavirus Control.

Tajikistan is the guest of honor at this year’s festival, which opened on Thursday.

Groups from Afghanistan, Armenia, Azerbaijan, Iraq, Algeria and several other countries are scheduled to perform during the festival, which will run until February 15.

Photo: A poster for the 40th Fajr International Theater Festival.

MMS/YAW

Leave a Comment

3 + 7 =