​​​​Festival d’Avignon is not just France’s most important theater event, but also one of the longest-running and renowned worldwide. For around three weeks, this coquette city in Provence dedicates heart and soul to this great event that offers more than fifty shows, under the eager look of tens of thousands of attendees from all over the globe.

It is, without a doubt, an event that performing art enthusiasts just can’t miss. We invite you to climb aboard one of our Renfe-SNCF in Cooperation high-speed trains which connect many Spanish cities with the most important French destinations. We take you there so that you arrive just in time! 

Festival history

Many shows are performed throughout the city

The origins of Festival d’Avignon date back to the year 1947 and are attributed to Jean Vilar, a renowned theater director at the time. Since then, each July, the city turns into a true city-theater. The festival’s epicenter is the Palace of the Popes, with seating for approximately 2,000 people. It is one of the most impressive gothic monuments in Europe and is listed as a World Heritage Site by Unesco. What is particularly special about this site is that plays are performed outdoors, which makes it the best place to enjoy the summer nights.

But this is not the only stage, since there are about twenty historical locations that are also home to several theatrical pieces.

The festival has been visited by celebrities of the world of performing arts and has been witness to plays such as William Shakespeare’s ‘Hamlet’ and ‘King Lear’; Victor Hugo’s ‘Angelo, Tyrant of Padua’; Heinrich von Kleist’s ‘The Prince of Homburg’, and many others.

The 72nd edition

This 2018, the festival turns 72, and will take place between July 6th and 24th. The program does not only include a great number of theater plays, but there will also be dance, music and fine art shows, as well as exhibits, conferences, workshops and many other events.

In this edition, issues such as sexuality, gender identity, migrations and others will be explored, and it will also see a strong presence of artists from the Arab world. Some of the most remarkable plays include ‘Mama’, by Egyptian director Ahmed el Attar; ‘Antigone’, by Olivier Py; ‘Arctique’, by Anne-Cécile Vandalem; and ‘Grito Pelao’, by Rocío Molina.

Avignon, a fairy-tale town

Views of the Papal Palace Square

For yet another year, the beautiful city of Avignon will once again host the summer’s most cultural event. In addition to the imposing Palace of the Popes, this Provençal city’s old neighbourhood is home to many treasures, such as the Notre-Dame-des-Doms Cathedral, the famous Avignon Bridge, the Petit Palais and the walled city.

If you want to know this fairy-tale destination, we encourage you to climb aboard one of our Renfe-SNCF in Cooperation high-speed trains. Start packing your luggage!

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