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Istanbul is the major cultural and historic center of Turkey, and has maintained its prominence since its advent and even after the collapse of the Ottoman empire. The buttress of the city’s cultural base is the theatre in Istanbul that encompasses a wide range of performance, ranging from showcasing historical events to works of fiction. And these acts are done with a combination of music, gesture, expressions, dance, and speech. The theatre is not only a living entity of the city but even reflects the country’s past and different epochs of time. Though it is largely a continuation of the practice of the Ottoman period, it has also evolved with time and has ushered into an era of advancements, also featuring contemporary arts. It is composed of acts performed by a number of private companies such as the general directorate of Turkish State Theatres or Istanbul Municipality Theatre. A common theatre of the city is known for hosting countless plays and events along with the famous Broadway Istanbul, one of the best gift that the city received from West.
Apart from big theatres, the main centres that work as talent hunters and trainers of theatre enthusiasts are the art schools and number centres spread all across the city. The theatre in Istanbul is highly supplemented by these schools and art centres, that forms the backbone of it. To start with, we have the Cemil Topuzlu Open-Air Theatre located at Harbiye neighborhood of Şişli district in the city, which is the city’s hangout spot for theatre lovers in the summertime. It is known for music concerts in various genres of local and international performers. To calm yourself with the teachings of Rumi philosophy, there is no other than the famous Hodjapasha Culture Center. The center draws huge respect from the locals for its promotion of spirituality and peace in the spirit of Turkey’s tradition. And last but not least, the broadway Istanbul is organized by Zorlu Center PSM, which is an arts venue in Besiktas in Istanbul.
With the increment in the number of theatres in Istanbul, visitors intrigue for live theatre performances has also witnessed a considerable demand. To relish themselves with their favorite genre of an act by sitting back and see the curtains unfolding is euphoria for art lovers. Despite the barrier of language, it has proved by attracting a large section of tourists, who visit the city every year. Theatre shows in Istanbul are also performed on big platforms like annual events and festivals. The Istanbul Theatre Festival is the most established theatre event of the city, held every November. The interesting aspect of this is that it takes place in both the Asian and European part. Apart from that, the Istanbul International Theatre Festival that begins in May features signing performance, dance and plays also draw huge appreciation from critics. Aforementioned, broadway Istanbul is also added to the list of genres that these festivals feature. Traditional involvement of the local population in art and culture contributes to taking theatre in Istanbul to great heights.
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