Montreal’s International Anarchist Theatre Festival


Fifth Estate # 396, Summer, 2016

“SMV: Social Media Virus” by A. Esmie Wright was one of the many plays presented at the 11th annual Montreal International Anarchist Theatre Festival (MIATF) May 17 and 18, 2016. It is the world’s only such event; a yearly, volunteer labor of love, presenting provocative, socially engaged, freedom-loving theatre from around the world at an affordable price. It adheres to the anarchist tradition of no government handouts or corporate sponsorship.

In 2005, thirty local anarchists read and performed extracts from six anarchist plays (from 1880 to 1980) in French and English at a local punk rock venue successfully staging the city’s first such festival.

The MIATF, described by Voir newspaper, as “the little festival that pulls off little miracles,” amazes audiences with the range of international professional theatre groups which appear.

At the 2016 festival, troupes from Santiago, Chile and Berlin, Germany, performed as well as ones from Quebec, Canada and the US. In years past, groups also came from Manila, Phillipines, San Francisco, Paris, France, New York, and Bruxelles, Belgium.

Legendary troupes like The Living Theater and Bread and Puppet Theater shared the spotlight with local amateur and student performers. Part of the MIATF mandate is to present the best of international anarchist theatre, but also to promote and encourage local performances.

Ticket sales provide funding for the festival. Each year, a 250-person hall is filled to capacity for two nights of creative plays illustrating how anarchist theatre thrives.
More info: festivaltheatreanarchiste – at – yahoo – dot – ca