Roma Heroes – III. International Roma Theatre Festival

Roma Heroes – III. International Roma Theatre Festival

In 2019, the Independent Theater Hungary organized the International Roma Theater Festival for the third time. The performances took place in the Eötvös 10 Community and Cultural Theater and in the Vallai Garden of the RS9 Theater.

In the previous two years, we invited storytelling and monodrama performances to Hungary. The festival developed further and in 2019 chamber theater productions were presented to the public. Our goal is to show the diversity of Roma theater, the different genres and themes alike. The companies from Germany, the Czech Republic, Romania and Hungary presented stories about the past and present of Gypsies, their everyday challenges in the fields of education, health, migration, integration and assimilation. “So far, we have performed from the perspective of a hero, but this year the focus will be on the different aspects, the diverse relationships of Roma and non-Roma communities,” said Balogh Rodrigó, the theater’s artistic director and the director of the festival.

There were two performances on the topic of „active youth” in August 2019. Both performances featured young people who, through their work, draw attention to the difficulties and activity of the new generation.

In September 2019, we also presented two performances on the topic of „deadly challanges of the community”. One of the performances deals with the history of the Gypsies, the other revolves around the circumstances of the death of a young girl.

Forever holiday?!

The “Forever holiday?!” plays the story of two young people who are deported from their homeland. What can the parents do who one day receive a letter stating that their children can no longer live in the country they thought were their homeland so far? Everything changes, it only matters one question, what could they do in the hope of staying? But they have nothing to do, they have no stay in the country. They are deported and this is when their “forever holiday” begins among distant relatives whose worlds are already infinitely distant for the children who have grown up as Germans.

Director: Sandra Selimovic
Project leader: Joshua Weiss
Playwright: Hanna AlTaher
Assistant Director: Miriam Wagner

Project assistant: Jasmin Ibrahim


What are the general experiences about health care system? How embarrassing is it to just wait and wait when we are ill and vulnerable? What are our experiences or stereotypes on the Roma, addict or extremist youngsters that who might be our neighbors in a ward? Health care system has a lot of weak points and we all have at least one horror story about a quirky nurse, a grumpy doctor, a dirty ward or an insupportable patient. But have a look at this question from an other angle, let’s see what we can do for a change! Independent Theater Hungary’s play shows different viewpoints on health care as well as coexistence in general and draws attention to the importance of taking action.

Director: Rodrigó Balogh
Dramaturge: Márton Illés
Performers: Barbara Balázs, Irén Godó, Katalin Godó, Dániel Lakatos
Assistant: Judit Kőszegi, Gyula Antal Horváth

And again we slept Pindral

Where do we really come from? Where are the centuries-long persecution of Gypsy people rooted? An elderly Roma woman tells a story to her grandchild while her daughter is working. She begins her tale on Gypsy odyssey with creation myths and challenges which did not improve during the Habsburg rule and reached rock bottom during the 2nd world war. After having lost half of the family, may communism bring some relief? The old woman believes so, but her daughter who just arrives home from work does not agree. Let’s face the past together to be able to build a better future! The Czech company invites us to an extraordinary historic travel in a new theatrical form, using elements of circus arts.

Director: David Tiser
Dramaturge: Líza Urbanová
Music: Tibor Žida
Choreography: Libor Kubeš
Performer: Pavlína Matiová, Marta Balážová, Maria Bikárová, Milan Gruss, Tibor Žida

Who killed Szomna Grancsa?

The play by Giuvlipen company from Bucharest tells the story of a young Roma girl who believes in the importance of education and does everything she can to keep going to school. But she encounters a lot of difficulties. What can a young student do if her family does not support her? How can she fight prejudices in the school every day? What is our responsibility for the youngsters and in providing equal opportunities for everyone when starting their lives and be able to study? The play provides insight to a brave girl’s life who does everything she can for what she believes in. The play was based on a true story and guides us to a Romanian village where Gypsy and Hungarian people live together and who are almost the same for an outsider.

Director: Mihai Lukács
Writer: Mihai Lukács & Giuvlipen Theatre Company
Performer: Mihaela Drăgan, Zita Moldovan, Liana Ceterchi
Music: Elena Albu