Spring time at The Freedom Theatre!

News and updates from The Freedom Theatre, Jenin refugee camp.

Greetings from Jenin Refugee Camp! After a lively festival week, which you will read more about in this newsletter, we want to share an update on the last months, as well as give you a look into our future plans.


February the 10th was an exciting day at The Freedom Theatre. Our production Jinan, based on the story of Pippi Longstocking, had its premiere at our own venue in Jenin Refugee Camp. The play was received with enthusiasm by a full house. In the following week over 1300, mainly children and young people enjoyed the show! After the successful reception of Jinan, we are planning on touring the West Bank over the summer. Jinan’s story will be continued…

Our production Return to Palestine, one of our classics, will be performed in festivals in Jordan and Turkey this month. We are thankful for the everlasting enthusiastic reception of this play, and excited to share this story about Palestine to new audiences. Check our news item for details on the tour dates, as well as our planning for a European tour later this year.

Several days of importance have inspired us again to programme film screenings and other community events. On the eve of the Oscars, the nominated film Last Men in Aleppo was screened at The Freedom Theatre, right here in Jenin camp! For information about the other screened films, click here.

On International Women’s day we celebrated, in a joint collaboration with Consulate General of Sweden in Jerusalem and Palestinian Performing Arts Network (PPAN),  the achievements of Palestinian women, as well as highlighted their challenges. The day took place in Nablus and brought together people from all over Palestine, with music, theatre, dance, film and discussions.

This week, on the occasion of Palestinian Prisoners Day, we staged Ahmed Tobasi's show And Here I Am. His personal coming of age story follows Tobasi's transformation from an armed resistance fighter to artist. In a few days, Tobasi will continue his World tour, first to Norway and then to Zimbabwe. See our website for the details!



We are happy to welcome Nabil Al-Raee back as our artistic director, as of last February. Al-Raee has been involved with the theatre for many years and in several ways, creating theatrical work such as The Siege and teaching theatre and training methods. He has been a great promoter of cultural resistance through performing art.

Al-Raee will work on a new production as well as contribute to the programme of Theatre School once more, when the new cohort of students will begin in September 2018.

Last weeks festival, in honour of our 12th anniversary and in memory of founders Arna and Juliano, was a meeting place for old friends and a window of opportunity for new beginnings. Our Cultural Resistance Festival of Palestinian Theatre was held over four days and loaded with activities, which were enjoyed by international guests from Europe and the USA as well as the local community.

Several plays, walking tours through the camp and the district, and the time to meet each other were inspiring to continue and renew our cultural resistance movement. For an impression of the festival, please read our news item or visit our facebook page. Stay tuned for the continuation of the festival next year...

In the midst of all these activities, we are also busy preparing for new theatre clubs in the region and will start on preparations for the summer activities soon. We will keep you posted!



Last but not least, we would like to bring to your attention a few publications on The Freedom Theatre, which might interest you. A few weeks ago we published our second book Performing Cultural Resistance, edited by Ola Johansson and Johanna Wallin, depicting the theatre’s history, work, and vision through some of its key people.

The printed version of the new book will be stocked in the Educational Bookshop in Jerusalem, along with our first book Rehearsing Freedom, which was published last year. Both books complement each other, the first being a visual book, and our latest an anthology of texts on The Freedom Theatre. Soon, we will hold an official launch of both books with the Educational Bookshop.

Don't feel like waiting? You can also order a print of the books via our publisher LeftWord Books (here). The kindle edition of our newest book can be bought here.