“My dream is that The Freedom Theatre will be the major force, cooperating with others in generating cultural resistance, carrying on it’s shoulders universal values of freedom and justice.” Juliano Mer Khamis
April is a month with profound meaning for The Freedom Theatre and for Jenin refugee camp. In April 2002, during the Battle of Jenin, residents of the camp managed to hold against a large-scale invasion by the Israeli occupation forces, resulting in great losses and large parts of the camp being demolished. On April 4, 2011, The Freedom Theatre’s co-founder Juliano Mer Khamis was brutally assassinated while driving out from the theatre. Every year on this day, we honour Juliano’s life, work and legacy while we repeat the demand that those responsible for this crime be brought to justice. April stands out every year as a period in which the theatre commemorates its resilience despite all the challenges and difficulties it has faced.
We have continued Arna and Juliano’s dream of turning The Freedom Theatre into a national cultural movement, which is home to creative and artistic expressions of justice, equality and freedom. We ask friends from across the world to join The Freedom Theatre in this mission and to share in celebrating our anniversary. At this time we commemorate the murder of our co-founder Juliano and repeat our demand for justice. We also join our people in the refugee camp in commemorating the 2002 Battle of Jenin.
Cultural resistance means different things to different people. However, even without a standard definition, we are still able to identify a set of common goals and visions amongst artistic initiatives, rooted in the belief that the arts and culture play a critical role in life and society.
We believe that cultural resistance is one tool within a larger framework of resistance. This automatically has social and organisational implications associated with the concept of change. At The Freedom Theatre we use various art forms, ranging from theatre to multimedia, to oppose the several occupations affecting us as Palestinians.
CULTURAL RESISTANCE FESTIVAL OF PALESTINIAN THEATRE
To all our friends and supporters around the world, The Freedom Theatre invites you to our 12th anniversary event. The theme of this year’s festival will be ‘cooperation’ which has a particular resonance this year as much of our work in 2018 will be in one way or another collaborative. There are several exciting activities planned for the four-day event including theatrical performances from theatres across the West Bank, a chance for talks and discussions, a tour of Jenin camp and much more!
Wednesday, April 4:
12:00: Welcome and reception – meet and greet
13:00: Short presentation by Mustafa Sheta and Nabeel Al-Raee and a short film of Juliano Mer Khamis
14:00: ‘And Here I Am’ theatre performance by Ahmed Tobasi (in English)
16:00: A tour of Jenin camp
18:00: ‘And Here I Am’ theatre performance by Ahmed Tobasi (in Arabic)
19:00: Film screening of Arna’s Children
Thursday, April 5:
10:30 TFT Friends Associations meeting (closed session)
15:00 Meeting with TFT Friends Associations to discuss next steps (closed session)
17:00 Theatre performance by Al-Harah Theatre
Friday, April 6:
10:00 Historic walk in Jenin district
15:00 ‘Return to Palestine‘ theatre performance (in Arabic)
Saturday, April 7:
Free time in the morning to visit Jenin city
16:00: Theatre performance by Ashtar Theatre
17:00: Closing speech by Mustafa Sheta and Nabeel Al-Raee
Welcome to join us on one, two or all of the days! To RSVP, email firstname.lastname@example.org. Tickets for the events will be sold at the door.
Information on how to get to The Freedom Theatre can be found here.
Please note that The Freedom Theatre cannot offer accommodation or help with booking accommodation. Overnight guests can contact Cinema Jenin Guesthouse (email email@example.com) or North Gate Hotel, both offer 10% discount to The Freedom Theatre’s guests (make sure to mention The Freedom Theatre when booking).