Street theatre and innovation

Xarxa Teatre was formed in 1983 in Vila-real (Castellón) and has not stopped growing since. Because there was no stable theatrical infrastructure in the País Valenciano, in the early days the directors of Xarxa Teatre opted to use the street as the venue for their shows. In all these years the company’s directors, Manuel V. Vilanova and Leandre Ll. Escamilla, have never turned their backs on their roots and Xarxa Teatre has become one of the most individual large format street theatre companies in the world.

• Tradition. The main themes of the company’s works take their inspiration from Valencian and Mediterranean popular culture. Xarxa has successfully immersed itself in these traditions, brought them into today’s context and made them universal. Audiences respond enthusiastically to the shows because they recognise the reality and the particular way of life represented in them.

• Festival theatre. Xarxa’s performances stimulate the audience, penetrating all five senses (the smell of the fireworks, the visual force of the images, the rhythm of the music…). Every experience is unique; each spectator enjoys the show in his or her own particular way..

• Universal language. The company is committed to forging its own language, in which gesture is accompanied by other elements like music, pyrotechnics and lighting effects… This philosophy frees the show from spoken text and means that Xarxa’s work can be staged anywhere in the world, and makes it ideal for large audiences.

• Staged pyrotechnics. Pyrotechnics is more than just part of the show’s visual excitement; it helps narrate the story, whether it plunges the viewer into a traditional Valencian fiesta or enacts a storm on the high seas. The press have recognised Xarxa as sculptors of fire – and with good reason..

• Multimedia theatre. Xarxa has successfully brought new technologies into its shows. All the technical advantages of today’s theatre (large format projections, cranes and large scale structures, etc.,) mean the company can now rise to every artistic challenge.