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The International Theatre Institute (ITI) is the largest performing arts organisation worldwide and was founded in 1948 on the initiative of UNESCO. 


In Article 1 of its Charter, the ITI adopts the mandate “to promote the international exchange of knowledge and practice in the performing arts in order to consolidate peace and friendship between peoples, to deepen mutual understanding, and increase creative cooperation between all people in the performing arts.” 

It advocates for the free development of the performing arts, the protection and promotion of diversity in cultural expressions, and the protection of the rights of artists. 


The ITI supports the development of the performing arts in all fields, national as well as international cooperation between all genres and various organisations, as well as the establishment of national ITI centres in all countries. The ITI supports the documentation of and publication about the performing arts. 

Together with its members, the ITI organises and coordinates international festivals, congresses, workshops and expert meetings, exhibitions and competitions. 

In accordance with the ITI Charter, member centres are guided by the principles of mutual respect for the national traditions of each country. 

The ITI General Secretariat is located in Paris and Shanghai. 

Since 2014, the president of the World Organisation has been Mohammed Saif Al-Afkham (Fujairah, UAE). The World Organisation has had two German theatre makers as presidents, Ivan Nagel (from 1977 to 1979) and Manfred Beilharz (from 2002 to 2008). 

2018 – 70 years of the ITI World Organisation 

After the Second World War, UNESCO initiated the foundation of an autonomous professional international theatre organisation to be the successor organisation to the Societé Universelle du Théâtre of the League of Nations, which was dissolved in 1938. For the founding congress in Prague in 1948, the eight national theatre centres that had already been set up, along with delegates from a total of 20 countries, adopted the charter that set forth the goals of the newly established world-wide network of the International Theatre Institute (ITI). The 70th anniversary of the ITI was celebrated in 2018 with numerous activities worldwide and a meeting of ITI centre delegates in Hainan, China. Renowned theatre artists from five continents reaffirmed in their statements their commitment to the goals of the ITI. Today, more than 90 national centres and associated members belong to the World Organisation.  

The German section of the ITI has existed since 1955 and the German Federal Republic has been a member of the international network since 1957. A merger took place in 1991 with the GDR centre, founded in 1959. 

Passende Meldungen

All News

ITI Fundrising Campaign for ZOUKAK, Beirut

ZOUKAK Theatre Company reiceives Donation from German ITI Centre

Ibrahim Ghareib: Skizze

Association Award of the ITI

ITI annual Conference 2021 "Hybridity and Equality?"

The public thematic annual conference of the ITI, which had to be cancelled last year due to the pandemic, took place on the web.


Theater der Welt Düsseldorf is taking place!

The Düsseldorf edition of Germany’s largest theatre festival is the first in its forty-year history that has had to be postponed.


Symposium for the Theaterpreis des Bundes 2021

On 08 July 2021, preceeding the award ceremony of the Theaterpreis des Bundes, we will organise the symposium #dialograumtheater.


User Survey

Short survey for users of touring artists' services.


Presentation of the ITI Prize to Jetse Batelaan

German ITI Centre 2020 Award

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Winners of the 2021 Theaterpreis des Bundes have been announced.

The jury selected 11 theaters out of 76 applications to win the award. 


ITI Germany has a new board

Yvonne Büdenhölzer elected President

All News theatre-prize of the federal government


31 Einzelporträts kleiner und mittlerer Theater jenseits der Metropolenräume. Die 31 Theater, die 2015, 2017 und 2019 mit dem Theaterpreis des Bundes…


Four ITI fellows of the Atelier Düsseldorf/ Theater der Welt

Onlien-Interview with Milena Gehrt, Moutaz Abdulrahman, Valia Katsi and Nada Abdel Wahab


Atelier Livestream

Every day, the panels of the Atelier will be livestreamed on youtube as well as iti-germany.de and thefestivalacademy.eu.


40 years of THEATER DER WELT

What remains when a festival is over? The Media Library for Dance and Theatre is openagain and with it the exhibition WELTRAUM with its DIGITAL…


Call for applications Forum Theaterübersetzung

Translation workshop of new drama into German.


Festival »Theater der Welt« Düsseldorf hands over to Frankfurt/Offenbach

»Theater der Welt 2023« is curated by Chiaki Soma and Kyoko Iwaki of Arts Commons Tokyo.

#dialograumtheater - Symposiumsprogramm ist online

Das Programm zum Symposium #dialograumtheater ist online.


Award ceremony of the Federal Theatre Prize 2021

The symposium #dialograumtheater and the award ceremony of the Theaterpreis des Bundes 2021 took place on 08.07.2021 in the presence of the Minister…


Job offer: student assistant

The International Theatre Institute Germany in Berlin / Mediathek für Tanz und Theater (ITI / MTT) is looking for a student assistant (m/f/d) in the…


Kick-Off Workshop Interlinking Media Libraries

Save the Date! Public Kick-Off of the DFG funded project on Ovotber 7th 2021


Job offer extended: student assistant

The International Theatre Institute Germany in Berlin / Mediathek für Tanz und Theater (ITI / MTT) is looking for a student assistant (m/f/d) in the…