Renewed website!

Dear Visitors,

The revamped website of the Independent Theatre Hungary is now available.
We are aspired to make a modern, user friendly and well-structured page.
All the information about the Roma Heroes Festival, our drama volume and performances are also accessible.

Contact us via email:

World Theatre Day

27 March is the World Theatre Day. From 1978 a message is delivered before the performance begins on each stage of each country of the world.  The aim of the theatre day is to draw attention to the importance of theatre - and in a broader sense - of culture, to pay tribute to actors, theatre workers, and to ask for the love and support of the audience.

Although there are Roma theatre companies all over Europe, in the last 42 years the International Theatre Institute never asked a theatre maker of Roma origin to convey a message to the stages of the world. Year by year, the Independent Theater Hungary invites an artist with Roma ancestors to tell his/her message.

Please, welcome the World Theatre Day message of Simonida Selimovič, the artistic director of the Romano Svato Theatre Company in Vienna.

Simonida Selimovič

“When I think of the theatre, I imagine a world where theatre represents the citizens, and my culture has a place on stage, too. Unfortunately, this is not the case, even if the Roma people have been playing a role in the history of Europe for 700 years.

In the theatre my soul was filled with hope, my mood was upbeat, and I felt myself at home because I was happy to play. Later, I noticed that there’s few Roma who can practice this profession. I belong to those who had the courage to choose this profession. Then I soon realised why I am assigned only stereotyped roles, why I am always pigeonholed.

The quality of theatre cannot be measured by the number of the audience. Considering the whole society, theatre is an institute for a minority. However, don’t we measure the world of democracy by the fate of the minorities living in it?

Theatre is interesting and good if it explains the world.

After all, theatre is the place where society reflects on life in general. My attention is captured when I feel that the play deals with serious questions: love, death, social and political conditions, when I feel personally addressed as a member of society.

However, I don’t feel addressed at all when the “Gipsy Baron” is on stage. The language still offends me and many other Roma people. The Volksoper in Vienna can still make flyers and advertise a play in which there are no Roma actors at all, and that represents only a corny cliché-like “gipsy image” known by the majority.

The play ignores not only the undignified conditions in which most of the Roma lived but also the fact that when the canonised light opera was made, most Roma groups had settled, did not wander on their well-known  ‘green wagon’ from one place to the other, but they lived together with the majority of society. If the ‘Gipsies’ are regarded persona no grata of the multi-ethnic state, how is it come that ‘the outcast’ could become the subject of the entertainer industry in the heyday of the light opera.

On this basis, this tendency became the authentic vision of society in the period, and for the art of Romantism it became the intellectual background again and again to depict the ‘Gipsy  lifestyle’, which satisfied the audience of the Decadent movement both musically and dramaturgically. The opera is the product of the majority that excluded and persecuted the Roma for centuries, and this tendency lives on in this light opera performed in Vienna, too. It’s the well-designed construction of the Gipsy stereotype that was created by the majority during the centuries.

I ask the question: Why do the cultural policy of Austria, the sponsors and the banks support such an opera with an unbelievably huge amount of money? The performance they support doesn’t help the community, the nation, society and tolerance but popularises racism in the city of Vienna, and what is more, tries to make it presentable.   

I wish a Roma theatre that hasn’t been realised in Vienna yet. A theatre where we can tell our own stories about our ancestors. Here, in Austria the stories of the Sinti and the Roma haven’t been told like that of the Jews, otherwise ‘The Gipsy Baron” couldn’t be on programme now.

Numerous plays and operas could be written based on our stories, we just need a place to play, recognition, and support from those who owe us. We need places and theatres that are available for us, where the Roma people can play, work and show the world their still unknown stories. Many people don’t know the real ‘Roma’ people, they just believe to know them based on the distorted and false idea they have in their minds.

Let’s make a theatre that includes people who respect each-other, where high-quality stories are told, a theatre that our descendants are delighted about, too. Let’s become an example for the next generation so that they can learn from us. Don’t let them live in an art world that is full of clichés and racism.

KOSOVO MON AMOUR – on the international day of theatre


Yashar and his wife, Elvira are running a pub in Kosovo during the South Slavic war. The hate campaign against the nations creates more and more corruption, violence and absurd life situations among people who are relatives and once were friends but became sworn enemies of each-other all of a sudden. The play illustrates a society suffering from propaganda of hatred, nationalism, lies and manipulation in a shocking way. A society which Hungary starts to resemble. (Rodrigó Balogh, director)

„When bulls are fighting, the grass is suffering the most.” The play was written by Ruzdija Sejdovic living in Köln and his partner Jovan Nikolic. It was presented in the Phralipe Theatre of Germany in 2000, in the direction of Rahim Burham.

Authors: Ruzdija Sejdovic and Jovan Nikolic
Translator: Kenyeres-Gyulassy Kinga
Screenplay: Illés Márton
Director: Balogh Rodrigó
Performed by: 

Time of the premier: 27 March 2020, on the occasion of the international day of theatre
Place of premier: RS9 Theatre, BUDAPEST, RUMBACH SEBESTYÉN str.9.
Tickets: Click here! 

Photo: Elvira performed by Fátyol Kamilla 
Created by: Vincze Alina

The performance is presented by the Independent Theatre Hungary supported by Goethe Institute.

RS9 Theatre and Independent Theater Hungary announces a joint call for participation in a Roma theatre program series free of charge!

We invite underprivileged Roma and non-Roma youth from secondary schools to participate, 20-25 people from each institution.

In case the youngsters from your group are interested in our program, please do not hesitate to contact us.
Attendance is free for those who participate in all the programs (vis major is an exception).

What do we offer?

A communication training in the educational institution of the applicant group in March of 2020, furthermore attendance on the following performances:

25 March 2020 16.00-18.00: The Hardest Word, RS9 Theatre Vallai garden (optional date)

26 March 2020, 16.00-18.00 The Hardest Word, RS9 Theatre Vallai garden (optional date)

16 April 2020, 16.00-18.30 Chameleon girl, RS9 Theatre Vallai garden (optional date)

17 April 2020, 16.00-18.30 Chameleon girl, RS9 Theatre Vallai garden (optional date)

14 May 2020, 16.00-18.00, Shoddies, RS9 Theatre Vallai garden (optional date)

14 May 2020, 19.00-21.00, Shoddies, RS9 Theatre Vallai garden (optional date)

A 2 x 120-minute-long Roma Heroes Workshop will be held at the end of May in RS9 Theatre Vallai garden.

Please apply for the program via email or phone
Balogh Rodrigó, 06203905403,

The program is supported by Tides Foundation.

Roma Heroes Workshop

The Independent Theatre Hungary invites applications for participating in the Roma Heroes Workshop free of charge. The workshop is based on the first educational methodology ever which focuses on Roma drama, theatre, Roma creators and heroes on an international level.

The Roma Heroes Workshop
The participants get familiar with European dramas and heroes, while their own stories and exploits also come into view. The background, the values, the decisions of the heroes and the changes brought by them are explicitly discussed. 
Everyone gets to know each-other and the different Roma communities better in the workshop. Their communication and debating skills develop, and they become more open for different aspects, moreover, their cooperation skills improve.

The range of the applicants
We are waiting for applications form students of secondary and post-secondary educational institutions, colleges for advanced studies. Our goal is to reach Roma and non-Roma students,too.
The optimal number of the group is minimum 15, maximum 25 people.
The duration of the workshop is 90-250 minutes, as needed.

The application process and further information
Please fill in the application form and send it to email address: until 17 pm. on 28.02.2020.

Institutions and groups from Budapest and the whole country can apply.

In the present call 10 workshops can be provided free of charge. Additional workshops can be requested with partial funding or self-financing.
The workshops will be organized in the period of March - November 2020.
For further information please contact the program manager, Tamás Szegedi:
Phone: +3670-415-47-97

Some feedback of the former participants of Roma Heroes Workshops:

„We have known each-other in the group for years but we got closer today.”
„A real hero faces the difficulties, can fail but never give up!”
„We are all heroes, let’s discover the values of each-other!”

Roma Heroes – Interdisciplinary Course Development II.

Call for application for university educators working at German universities.

Given the great success of our first interdisciplinary course development programme, the Independent Theatre Hungary invites entries for a competition for university educators who intend to run an independent course in the autumn semester of 2020/21. If you are interested in the interdisciplinary contexts of the European Roma communities, contemporary theatre plays and performances your application is welcome.

What is „Roma Heroes”?
2019 was the third year we organised the Roma Heroes International Theatre Festival. The goal of the festival is to show the values of Roma theatre both for the Roma and non-Roma audience, for the young and the old, too. From the selection of the plays chosen for the first two festivals, we published the first international collection of Roma dramas.  All plays elaborate the stories of real Roma heroes and they not only make us acquainted with the life of the Roma people and communities but also help to find our own heroes. The initiative plays a crucial role in reinforcing the members of Roma communities and in developing the knowledge on the topic related to different disciplines.  The lecturers who participated in our previous course development workshop realised new courses connected to theatre, communication, anthropology, art and film studies. Beside widening their professional knowledge, the educators also became more open to take in different perspectives, and their co-operative skills improved, too.

Roma Heroes Internationale Theater Festival

Why is it important?
In each culture- in Ancient Greece, in the Elizabethan theatre, or in the American classics- the active dramatic characters who are able to make decisions and set changes afloat appear together with the emergence of the middle-class. Through these stories we can obtain a vast knowledge on the past and present of different European societies. With the “hero narrative” we were able to reframe the old narratives, to engage and strengthen different groups. The Roma theatre has a special role as part of the European cultural heritage. Our programme gives he opportunity to examine and get to know better the similarities and the differences of the methodology applied in the different disciplines.

Roma Heroes workshop

What do we offer?

  • Opportunity to participate in the three-day long workshop facilitated by international storytellers and the experts of Independent Theatre Hungary
  • The workshop includes getting to know and elaborating contemporary Roma plays – based on historical and social aspects, communication frame and effects, language elements, potential to form the identity and other interdisciplinary aspects brought up by the participants
  • Getting to know the work of other disciplines- lecturers who took part in our first course development workshop meet the new participants
  • Getting to know the pedagogic methods ideal to elaborate our argument
  • Realisation of new course plan in co-operation with other lecturers
  • We pay the travel cost and the cost of the accommodation and catering for the participants related to the event realized in Budapest.
  • We release the scenario of the plays, the video recordings of the excerpts used, and the related materials  
  • Follow-up, mentoring, knowledge sharing during the realisation and evaluation of the course plans
  • Gross 300 EUR payment for the educators in case of a well-elaborated, detailed course plan for the autumn semester of 2020 at one of the German universities.
  • As a member of a dynamic and colourful team, we provide the possibility to participate in the development and dissemination of Roma heroes- a unique, complex cultural-educational-social initiative

What do we expect?
  • Active participation in the three-day long workshop held in Budapest (8-10 February 2020);
  • Good command of English (intermediate level) to participate in the workshops;
  • The realisation of a well-elaborated, detailed course plan within a month after the workshop has ended;
  • Execution of a university course related to the topic in the autumn semester of 2020.;
  • Contacting the Independent Theater Hungary during the course;
  • Sharing the experience and the results of the course after their realization

The feedback of the participants of the course development workshop:

I have never built in storytelling texts into my courses but they turned out to be important sources for me. This is why I applied for the development course: I could propose new ethical questions thanks to the texts, since the sources I used until then were either ethnographic collections (confessions) filled with the subjective point of view and interpretation of the collector, or literary texts. According to the postmodern approach what you cannot write in an anthropological way, should be written as literature. The five Roma dramas were perfect to be analysed because they stand on the boundary of the two genres: they were in themselves born from a Roma point of view. They held a mirror so the reader could interpret them as his /her own. The storytelling texts fill a gap: they give knowledge over to the Roma about their own history and the Roma who endured any kind of atrocity.  As we all know, giving knowledge over increases tolerance.  (Boglárka Bakó, Eötvös Loránd University, Faculty of Social Sciences, Department of Cultural Anthropology, Ethic Course)

„The twelve occasions of the workshops contributed to the renewal of my professional methodology and my personal attitude. The co-operation with the educator colleagues at the workshop inspired my preparatory work in the beginning. At the end of the project when the students met the members of the Independent Theatre in the realms of an informal talk, it was also very motivating.  I realized how essencial interactivity is, and in the future, I would like to stick to it.  The plays inspired me because the course I held could give a complex experience with their help, and the students could use knowledge embedded in a creative experience. They showed the knowledge they obtained in a creative product at the end of the course, this way the assessment was deliberating and what is more, the students could really appreciate each-other’s work. The outcome of the course was some essays and films on the topic, like the video entitled “The homeless superhero”.  (Andrea Pócsik, Pázmány Péter Catholic University, Faculty of Humanities and Social Sciences, Budapest)

How to apply

You can apply HERE, sending us the filled-in application form and your professional CV until 10 January 2020 to the following e-mail address: For further information, please call Edina Szabados on the following number: +36205210533.

III. International Roma Heroes Theatre Festival

Independent Theater Hungary organizes the third Roma Heroes International Theatre Festival this year, between 24th August and 15th September, presenting Roma companies and their plays from several European countries. The shows take place in Eötvös 10 Theatre and in Vallai kert, RS9 Theatre.

In the past two years (2017 and 2018) we invited monodramas and storytelling performances to Hungary. The festival keeps growing and in 2019, the audience can get to know Roma chamber theatre plays. Our goal is to show the diversity of Roma theatre, also presenting different genres and topics. The artists tell stories from Germany, the Czech Republic, Romania and Hungary about the past and present of Gypsy communities, showing their everyday challenges related to education, health care, migration, integration and assimilation. "So far, the plays presented the viewpoint of one hero, but this year, different points of views and the diverse relations of Roma and non-Roma communities will be in the spotlight", said Rodrigó Balogh, artistic director of the theatre and the festival.

The plays are performed with English subtitles and Hungarian interpreting, so they are accessible for Hungarian and foreign audience as well.

In August 2019, two plays present the active youth.

Both plays star youngsters who draw attention to the challenges and active engagement of the new generation.

The coproduction of Gorki Studio in Berlin and Romano Svato company in Vienna is based on the real life story of the Yugoslavian sisters who were born in Germany but got recently deported from there, with the help of professional actors and youngsters.

Hungarian premiere: 24th August 2019, 6 p.m., Eötvös10 Közösségi és Kulturális Színtér
Audience discussion with the artists after the show.  

Photo: Nihad Nino Pušija
from the play 'Forever Holiday!'

The play "Shoddies" by Independent Theater Hungary also put youngsters on the stage to show the insane health care system, their own traumas and prejudices, and to ask themselves as well as the spectators what we can do – instead of complaining – to improve this situation.

Public rehearsal: 23rd August 2019, 6 p.m., RS9 Theatre, Vallai kert

Premiere: 25th August 2019, 6 p.m., RS9 Theatre, Vallai kert

Audience discussion with the artists after the show.

Photo: Alina Vincze
The "Shoddies"

In September 2019, two plays discuss the deadly challenges of the community.

While one play evokes history, the other explores the circumstances of a young girl's death.

The festival continues in September with the Czech ARA Art company, evoking Roma history in a new form, building on the elements of circus arts. The storytelling of the old Roma women guides us through the fate and past of the community, starting with the origin legend of Gypsy people, through modern history and Holocaust till the assimilation efforts of the socialist regime. Even though the story presents a Czech perspective, it raises topics and issues that are important for Roma communities in Hungary as well.

Hungarian premiere: 14th September 2019, 6 p.m., Eötvös10 Közösségi és Kulturális Színtér
Audience discussion with the artists after the show.

Photo: Jan Mihalicek
from the play Pindral

Giuvlipen company from Bucharest tells the story of a young Roma girl who would like to keep studying but neither her family nor her school supports her. The play is based on a real story and presents the struggle of the girl from various perspectives, raising the validity of different approaches and at the same time pointing out collective responsibility that no one can escape.

Hungarian premiere: 15th September 2019, 6 p.m., RS9 Theatre, Vallai kert
Audience discussion with the artists after the show.

Source: Giuvlipen Theater Company

If you would like to book your ticket, contact us at!

Roma Heroes International Theatre Festival is the one and only international theatre meetup in the world for Roma theatres which aims to bring together the minority and the majority, and strengthen Roma communities by showing the values and challenges of Roma theatre and communities.