World Theatre Day 2024

The World Theatre Day was established by the International Theatre Institute and UNESCO experts and it was celebrated on 27 March 1962 for the first time. Since then, the World Theatre Day is celebrated across the whole world.

For this occasion, a personality is invited to share her or his reflections on the theme of theatre and a culture of peace.

The 2024 message was written by Norwegian writer and playwright Jon FOSSE.
It will be read in theatres, schools, libraries and cultural spaces across the world.

Art, good art, manages in its wonderful way to combine the utterly unique with the universal. It lets us understand what is different—what is foreign, you might say—as being universal. By doing so, art breaks through the boundaries between languages, geographical regions, countries. (…)
War is the battle against what lies deep inside all of us: something unique. And it is also a battle against art, against what lies deep inside all art. 

I have been speaking here about art in general, not about theater or playwriting in particular, but that is because, as I’ve said, all good art, deep down, revolves around the same thing: taking the utterly unique, the utterly specific, and making it universal. (…)
War and art are opposites, just as war and peace are opposites—it’s as simple as that. Art is peace

Entire message of Jon Fosse

Translated by Damion Searls


Jon Fosse (1959) is a renowned Norwegian writer and playwright, known for his extensive body of work which includes plays, novels, poetry collections, essays, children’s books, and translations. Awarded with the Nobel Prize in Literature in 2023, Fosse is one of the most performed playwrights in the world and his work has been translated into over fifty languages, with productions presented on over a thousand stages worldwide. His minimalist and introspective plays, often bordering on lyrical prose and poetry, continue the dramatic tradition established by Henrik Ibsen in the 19th century. Fosse’s work has been associated with post-dramatic theatre, and his notable novels have been described as post-modernist and avant-garde due to their minimalism, lyricism, and unconventional use of syntax. Fosse’s novels, such as “Morgon og kveld” (2000; “Morning and Evening”, 2015) and “Det er Ales” (2004; “Aliss at the Fire”, 2010), showcase his unique language characterized by pauses, interruptions, negations, and profound questioning. The trilogy “Trilogien” (2016) and the septology “Det andre namnet” (2019; “The Other Name”, 2020) further demonstrate Fosse’s exploration of love, violence, death, and reconciliation. Fosse gained international acclaim as a dramatist with his play “Nokon kjem til å komme” (1996; “Someone Is Going to Come”, 2002), known for its radical reduction of language and powerful expression of human emotions. With his unique writing style and profound exploration of everyday situations, he has established himself as a major figure in contemporary literature and theatre.