World Theater Day


World Theater Day was celebrated for the first time in 1961 on the initiative of the International Theater Institute (ITI).

Since then, every year, on March 27th, the opening date of the “Theater of Nations” season that took place in Paris in 1962, the World Theater Day is celebrated through the most diverse forms, from the whole international theater community, from over 90 ITI Centers spread all over the world, from theaters all over the world, from professionals and enthusiasts, from universities, academies and schools.

On that date, numerous national and international initiatives are organized and promoted to celebrate theater all over the world.

The date not only represents the celebration of the value and importance of the theatrical art form, but also intends to be a sensitization action aimed at governments and institutions to recognize the value of the theater, not only as an art form, but also as an important driving force for the development and economic growth of the nations.

Among the initiatives promoted by UNESCO Giovani is the celebration of International Days as an instrument to promote and raise awareness of unescan themes. Theater as an artistic expression, as the mother of catharsis, as a bridge between real and realistic. The thrilling games of roles and emotions that make up the live show, a primordial blend of dance, music, words, sound and body. From lyric to contemporary theater, theater teaches us to see with the naked eye, the many aspects that are part of life and of human life.

The Youth Committee of the Italian National Commission for UNESCO intends to promote this ancient but ever present art on World Theater Day, so that the new generations recognize with awareness its social and cultural value, educating to live the passion as profound knowledge of the human condition and its most remote, essential, amusing or tragic aspects.

In the twenty Italian regions, within the UNESCOEdu project, workshops, performances and seminars will be held on the role and social function of the theater, both as an artistic form and as a knowledge of popular theater, linked to every regional fabric. Particular importance will be given to the experimentation of acting with high school students and the possibility that culture offers, to rethink places and enrich individuals.


One of the most important initiatives promoted during the GMT is the launching and dissemination of the World Theater Day Message by a world-renowned personality who, at the invitation of the ITI, shares his reflections on the theater with the world. on the culture of peace.

The first Message of the World Theater Day was written by Jean Cocteau in 1962.

The Message is translated into over 50 languages, read by tens of thousands of viewers before the shows in theaters around the world and reported by hundreds of newspapers. All the media collaborate in the dissemination of the message, through over a hundred radio stations and television stations that transmit the message to listeners and spectators in all corners of the five continents.


The goals of the World Theater Day are:

  • to promote theater in all its forms throughout the world;
  • make people aware of the value of theater in all its forms;
  • allow the international theater community to promote their work on a large scale, also in order to make governments and opinion leaders aware of the importance and importance of theater in all its forms so that they can promote and support them;
  • to celebrate the theater in all its forms;
  • pearl of sharing the theater with others.

GMT 2017

This year the MIUR, in collaboration with ITI and with the “Youth Committee of the Italian National Commission for UNESCO”, has launched a new theatrical writing competition for school students of all levels.

The winning work will be staged by the students of the Institute of belonging of the student author of the short-play, assisted by professional theater experts and the UNESCO Youth Committee through the Regional Committees is promoting initiatives in schools for the promotion of World Day of the Theater.