Community Festivals

12 h Open Space

Puppet/ Figure/ Object Theater
Photo: Annika Ley

Every year at the end of the season, Schaubude Berlin opens its doors for a long night celebrating the diversity of independent puppet, figure and object theater in Berlin: 12 hours filled with productions, theatrical experiments, puppet comedy, video art, installation and walk acts – for audience members of all ages. Here are the rules of the game: all theater makers with work of a maximum length of 45 minutes in which puppets, figures, objects or forms of animation with new media are used can apply to have their work presented in the festival. The schedule of programming is decided solely by the works submitted. In addition, an audience award will be  given within both the children’s theater schedule of programming as well as the evening schedule of programming.

Presented by Schaubude Berlin

12h open space is held annually at the end of the season.

This year's edition (June 20, 2020) had to be canceled due to the corona pandemic. Please visit the festival website for more detailed information.


Photo: Thore Rehbach

The programming series AUSUFERN by Uferstudios is held annually in the summer since 2016 and initiates and presents art projects which especially focus on social space and attempt to initiate dialog with the neighborhood. The programming approach refers back to a notion of choreography which understands itself not only as production, but as a social practice as well. This brings the desire of all partners of Uferstudios to open the location much further forward. AUSUFERN is artistically implemented together with Berlin-based and international artists as well as with members of the urban society.

Presented by Uferstudios GmbH

Next edition expected in summer 2021.

BAM! Berliner Festival für aktuelles Musiktheater

Music Theater
Music Performance
Photo: Marcus Lieberenz

BAM!, the festival of Berlin‘s independent music theater community, brings together a dense schedule of programming providing exciting views of new paths in music theater. In doing so, the focus is placed less on opera but still on forms that follow the original question of the intertwining of sound and action on a stage. New theater strategies take the place of earlier narrative forms. They are closely tied to working methods that can hardly be aligned with the structures of repertory and ensemble theaters; instead, they are rooted within the independent performing arts community. The goal of BAM! is to bring the approaches of this type of theater together, to place them in a relationship to each other and to purse the question of where music theater can lead today.

Presented by Zeitgenössisches Musiktheater Berlin (ZMB) - -

The next edition of Berlin Showcase is expected to take place in 2021.

Berlin Showcase

Performing Arts for very young Audiences
Photo: David Beecroft

Berlin Showcase is a festival featuring current productions for very young audiences in and from Berlin. Theater o.N. is the initiator and presents the format together with other performance venues such as Schaubude Berlin. The focus is placed on the presentation, networking and artistic research of the interdisciplinary Berlin arts community creating work for very young audiences. Encounters with the international community of practitioners are made possible and the work of Berlin-based theater artists is presented to national and  international curators and presenters.

Presented by Theater o.N.

The next edition of Berlin Showcase is expected to take place in 2021.


Spoken Theater
Photo: Dejan Patic

The Monologfestival at Theaterdiscounter has been held every two years since 2007. For each edition, it is coproducing up to ten new theater solos exploring current social and political topics. The new productions of these monologues and performances, which primarily come from Berlin’s independent performing arts community, result in a polyphonic exploration of the topics during this festival. At the same time, the artists and collectives fully investigate the complete range of the genre of monologue with their diverse aesthetic signatures. The Monologfestival presents autonomous individual statements that are very well-suited for touring as they lack elaborate sets. Showcases of selected festival monologues from the 2019 edition are planned for the 2020/21 season at Lichthof Theater Hamburg and studio NAXOS Frankfurt/Main, amongst other locations.

Presented by Theaterdiscounter

The next edition of the Monologfestival will take place in autumn 2021.

From November 6 to 8, 2020, the Monologfestival Showcase VOM ENDE HER NEU will take place at Theaterdiscounter.

Open Spaces

Photo: Dieter Hartwig

In 2014, Tanzfabrik Berlin founded a new format, Open Spaces, which brings together the current projects of the artists who work in the Tanzfabrik studios over the course of the year. This means that Open Spaces is not a curated festival; it refrains from providing a central topic and its understanding of dance is intentionally broad and diverse. The artists research connections in interpersonal, social, political and physical spaces, refer to past tendencies in their work and invent as well as discover new methods and concentrations for their work. Open Spaces offers the audience a schedule of programming which is rich in diverse event formats: These include conversations and exhibitions as well as performances, from the first rehearsal impressions all the way to the premiere.

Presented by Tanzfabrik Berlin

Two to three times a year; next edition: Oktober 16 to November 8, 2020.

Berlin Performing Arts Festival

Independent Performing Arts Made in Berlin
Photos: Paula Reissig

Since 2016, the Berlin Performing Arts Festival has presented the diversity of Berlin’s independent performing arts community at numerous theaters and performance venues throughout the entire city on an annual basis. With LAFT Berlin as the organizer, the festival is realized by the independent performing arts community itself. Organized along a variety of themes, the six-day schedule of programming collects work from all genres. The festival dedicates a special focus to emerging artists with the programming series Introducing…. The schedule of programming is supported by an ancillary schedule of events with communication, exchange and network formats. The festival’s schedule of programming is thus intended both for Berlin’s audience as well as visitors to the city and interested visiting industry professionals from throughout Germany and abroad.

Presented by LAFT Berlin — State Association for the Independent Performing Arts LAFT in cooperation with Ballhaus Ost, HAU Hebbel am Ufer, Sophiensæle and Theaterdiscounter

The next edition of Berlin Performing Arts Festival will take place from May 19 to 24, 2020 as a digital version. Please visit the festival website for more detailed information.

Plataforma Berlin

Video Dance
Photo: Ricardo Léon

Plataforma Berlin enters into an exchange with Ibero-American and Berlin-based artists and aesthetics and opens an intercontinental space for dialogue in which the current crisis of humanity is researched: over a period of three weeks, topics such as climate change, (post)colonialism, violence and the crisis of the relationship between humanity and nature come into focus against the backdrop of the political, ecological and social situation in the Americas. The festival reflects in an interdisciplinary manner on the transformation of decolonialization processes and the forms of survival that artists could develop during the migration to Berlin as a part of local utopias, thus creating a relationship between history and the future of humanity.

Initiated by Martha Hincapié Charry together with Ibero-American artists, radialsystem, Verlin, DOCK11

Plataforma Berlin is held annually.

This years edition will take place in a smaller form from August 6 to 9, 2020. The next regular edition of the festival will be held in summer 2021.

Tanznacht Berlin

Photo: Dieter Hartwig

Tanznacht Berlin presents the diversity of choreographic work by artists living and working in Berlin. Initiated in the year 2000 as part of the 20th anniversary celebration of Tanzfabrik Berlin, the festival has taken place at Uferstudios in Wedding since 2008. The format changes every two years by including a new curator and is intended to reflect changes within artistic processes and public discourses. As an artistic congregation of Berlin’s dance community, Tanznacht sends clear cultural policy signals and provides an opportunity for intensive exchange. Since 2012, the festival has been offered every other year, alternating with the discursive format Tanznacht Forum. The heart of the 2020 Tanznacht festival will be formed by a choreographic group exhibition on the topic of displacement.

Presented by Tanzfabrik Berlin

 Every two years; due to the Corona-Pandemic the next edition will be split up in two seperate events:

Tanznacht Berlin 2020 “Vertigo (Part One)" from September 9 to 13, 2020.

Tanznacht Berlin 2020 “Vertigo (Part Two)” ecpected in July 2021.

Tanztage Berlin

Photos: Gerhard F. Ludwig, Natalia Labake, Foteini Christofilopoulou

Tanztage Berlin has become one of the most important national and international platforms for new choreographers in Berlin since its founding in 1996. Participation in the festival is an important step toward a professional career for many artists – they receive financial and dramaturgical support. Additional focuses of the festival are international cooperations with many nations, including Iran, Greece, Egypt, Poland, Israel, Sri Lanka and Mexico, as well as new communication and feedback formats. After the founders Barbara Friedrich and Benjamin Schälike, the festival was curated by Inge Koks, followed by Peter Pleyer. Anna Mülter has been the artistic director of Tanztage Berlin since 2014.

Presented by Sophiensæle

Tanztage Berlin is held annually in January; the next edition in 2021.

The Expo

Spoken Theater
Photos: Jerun Vahle

Since 2013, this annual festival has presented performances from the diverse yet often still undiscovered international independent performing arts community of Berlin with a working language of English. Over four evenings, each with one full-length or two shorter productions, the festival presents a cross section of this community across all performing arts genres. Within ExpLoRE, the newcomer’s platform, the Sunday afternoon is open to smaller formats or work still under development. The 2020 schedule of programming will be curated by festival founder Daniel Brunet, producing artistic director of English Theatre Berlin, as well as choreographer Olivia Hyunsin Kim and theater director Shlomo Lieberman, from the applications received based on the criteria of artistic excellence, internationalism and creative diversity.

Presented by English Theatre Berlin | International Performing Arts Center

(Inter)national Festivals in Berlin

Augenblick mal!

Children's & Youth Theater

Presented by KJTZ and ASSITEJ e.V. in cooperation with theaters in Berlin

The Augenblick mal! festival takes place every two years. The next edition will be held from April 16 to 21, 2021.

Berlin Circus Festival

Contemporary Circus
Photos: Miikkael Kukkula

The Berlin Circus Festival is the festival for contemporary circus in the heart of Berlin. It invites the audience to discover the breathtaking mix of circus, dance and performance during eight high-class productions under our big top. 10 days of festival with young, international artists from all over Europe. Stunning acrobatics, juggling, theatre, dance and a unique festival site.

The festival features renowned productions, spectacular shows, emerging artists and much more. It is the perfect time to discover the so-called contemporary circus, which is already enchanting an incredible number of spectators abroad!

On the site, there are as well art exhibitions, live music and savour delicacies with your drinks in the rays of the late Berlin summer sun.

Presented by Berlin Circus Production

The Berlin Circus Festival takes place annually in summer.

This year's edition has to be postponed due to the corona pandemic and is expected to take place in Winter 2020/21. Please visit the festival website for more detailed information.

Fratz International

Performing Arts for Very Young Audiences

Fratz International is the only festival nationwide held especially for participants aged zero to six. Every two years, Fratz hosts a selection of outstanding visiting productions from various countries in order to make these works accessible to Berlin audiences and the national children‘s theater scene in Germany and to promote international exchange.

Grounded in the belief that art and culture should be available to all persons regardless of age or social or cultural origin, a core element of the festival is that the visiting productions are shown at locations dispersed throughout Berlin — in temporary venues in districts where theater productions otherwise are rare.

Presented by Theater o.N.

Fratz is held annually.

This year's edition (April 24 to 29) has to be cancelled due to the Corona pandemic. Please visit the festival website for more detailed information.


Live Art
The Agency "Love Fiction", Photo: Piotr Rybkowski

Freischwimmen is a production platform for performance and theatre, supported by brut Wien, FFT Düsseldorf, Gessnerallee Zürich, Schwankhalle Bremen, Sophiensæle Berlin, and Theater Rampe Stuttgart.

Since 2018, the platform has constituted itself in a new constellation and under the title FREISCHWIMMEN as an international exchange and production platform for young groups and artists* from theatre and performance. This reorientation is aimed in particular at making the model more flexible: there are now individual modules with residencies, workshop shows and guest performances and labs, which can be combined in different ways according to the needs of the artists and capacities of the theatres.

The modules are intended to enable young artists* and groups to better network and establish themselves both locally and nationally. This is intended to create space for experiments, to liberate quickly produced pieces from the pressure of expectations, and to facilitate long-term development work on the part of the production houses.

The collaborating venues nominate artists who will be invited to FREISCHWIMMEN following a joint selection process.

The collaborating venues make individual decisions about the organisation of FREISCHWIMMEN festivals, curated by themselves, or the invitation of individual productions to already existing festivals and thematic focuses.


Children's & Youth Theater

Presented by JugendKulturService gGmbH Berlin

The performance series takes place annually in the fall and ends with the awards ceremony in November.

No Limits


Presented by Lebenshilfe gGmbH Kunst und Kultur in cooperation with HAU Hebbel am Ufer, Theater Thikwa at F40, Ballhaus Ost, Sophiensäle

The festival takes place every two years. The next edition will be held in 2021.


Dance For Young Audience
Iron Skulls Co. "Sinestesia", Photo: David Brock

In addition to a professional stage program featuring numerous dance performances, the festival offers an extensive supporting program. In collaboration with participating artists, there are introductions to the works performed, discussions, and free workshops for students of all ages and teachers.

The goal of the festival is to make children and young people curious and enthusiastic about dance. To do so, it puts together a joyful and energetic program presenting various aesthetic approaches and types of content from the international contemporary dance scene. The festival not only wish to diversify young people's viewing habits, but also encourage them to participate, empathize, and think outside the box.

The festival is aimed at children and young people ages 6 and over and at anyone who is interested. Most of the dance performances will take place in the morning, in order to enable school classes to attend during school hours.

The festival's main venue is the Uferstudios in Berlin's Wedding area. It cooperates
with TanzZeit e.V. at the Podewil (in Berlin-Mitte), and Theater Strahl.HalleOstkreuz (in Berlin-Lichtenberg).

Artistic Director: Canan Erek
Festival Management: Inge Zysk

Purple - International Dance Festival for Young Audiences will take place every year in January; the next edition will take place from January 16 to 24, 2021.

Tanz im August


Tanz im August is Berlin's international festival for contemporary dance. Each year, Tanz im August, presented by HAU Hebbel am Ufer, invites the audience to join the festival and experience four weeks of the complete dance scope. Productions of international stars, newscomers and choreographs of the Berlin scene bring their works to locations all over the city, among them numerous World and German premieres. Tanz im August also offers many audience engagement formats which offer unexpected access to the programme for the visitors.

Presented by HAU Hebbel am Ufer

The festival takes place annually in August.

This year's edition (August 7 to 29, 2020) has to be canceled in physical form due to the corona pandemic and instead takes place as Tanz im August Special Edition 2020. Please visit the festival website for more detailed information.

Theater der Dinge

Contemporary Puppet/Object Theater
Théâtre sans Toit "Cubix", Photo: Jean Yves Lacôte

The international festival THEATER DER DINGE is one of Germany’s most important festivals for contemporary figure and object theatre. Choosing different themes to focus on, the festival reflects the current trends and currents of the genre, explores peripheries and pushes experimentation at the intersections with affiliated arts. The productions, installations and exhibitions that are invited to participate all possess a unique artistic language, a wholly individual aesthetic quality and a certain urgency with respect to their content.

Presented by Schaubude Berlin

The festival takes place annually in October/November, the next edition from November 4 to 10, 2020.