(c) Gergely Ofner

Nebenan/Mellettünk Independent art from Hungary

  • Festival

In the “Nebenan” series, HELLERAU regularly presents contemporary art from regions where artists work under difficult political conditions. Following Nebenan Belarus (2022) and Nebenan Ukraine (2023), HELLERAU 2024 is dedicated to the independent performing arts scene in Hungary.

The flourishing theater landscape of the independent performing arts in Hungary that emerged after the fall of communism was an essential component of a diverse cultural life in post-socialist Hungarian society. Hungarian theater in particular was also present internationally at all important festivals and in production houses. Since the right-wing populist Fidesz party under Victor Orban came to power in 2010, these independent arts have been continuously dismantled – through years of successive cuts, the loss of financial stability and limited production opportunities. Renowned artists and collectives are having to end their artistic work or are leaving the country. What is remarkable, however, is that young artists in particular are deciding to work independently and express their personal experiences, artistic visions and their view of society.

HELLERAU presents current works by established Hungarian companies and a young dance and performance scene and initiates a public platform for exchange and networking. The artistic program is complemented by panels, artist talks, films, installations, music, workshops, open studios of resident artists and much more.

Funded by the Federal Government Commissioner for Culture and the Media, the Federal Agency for Civic Education and the Cultural Foundation of the Free State of Saxony as part of the Alliance of International Production Houses.