Queer Theatres Around The World

This Sunday, June 28 will mark 51 years since the uprising at Stonewall Inn that sparked the modern movement for LGBTQIA+ rights. Today, we are still fighting. As shown through iconic productions like RENT, Angels in America, and The Laramie Project, theatrical work has the power to shape an entire generation. Throughout the world, there are theatres and festivals committed to making work for, by, and starring queer people. Here are just a few.

Buddies in Bad Times Theatre, Toronto, Canada

Founded in 1979, Buddies in Bad Times Theatre is the longest running queer theatre Canada. Their work questions gender and social norms and embraces the inherently political nature of art. Their three foundational values are Difference, Excellence, and Community. You can see their virtual Pride offerings here.

International Dublin Gay Theatre Festival, Dublin, Ireland

The International Dublin Gay Theatre Festival was founded in 2004 in honor of queer icon and Dublin native Oscar Wilde’s 150th birthday. It emphasizes the work of gay Irish and international playwrights, directors, actors, and other theatremakers.

Mazhavil Dhwani Theatre Group, Kerala, India

An offshoot of Dhwayah Arts and Charitable Society, Mazhavil Dhwani Theatre Group is the region’s first theatre group dedicated to the stories of transgender people. In 2019 they presented Prayan Amranna Kadhakal, a play that told the stories of the actors onstage.

National Queer Theatre, New York City, USA

The National Queer Theatre in New York City is focused on fostering and supporting LGBTQIA+ communities through performance and social justice. They use storytelling to serve marginalized communities and partake in many partnerships with community organizations. Check out their digital programming here.

Tarang: Delhi International Queer Theatre and Film Festival. New Delhi, India

This queer theatre and film festival is an initiative created by Harmless Hugs, a support group for queer folks in India. The festival aims to connect the greater Indian LGBTQIA+ community in arts, creativity, and the fight for equal rights.

Theatre Rhinoceros, San Francisco, USA

Photo Credit: David Wilson. Equus at Theatre Rhinoceros in 2016.

The longest running queer theatre in the world, Theatre Rhinoceros was founded in 1977 in San Francisco. Their mission is to “enlighten enrich, and explore both the ordinary and extraordinary aspects of our queer community.” Learn more and check out their free digital offerings here.

The Theater Offensive, Boston, USA

The Theater Offensive is a a theatre committed to create art for the liberation trans and queer people of color that “transcends artistic boundaries, celebrates cultural abundance, and dismantles oppression.” They do work to center youth perspectives and one of their core values is experimentation and innovation. You can keep up with their upcoming digital events here.

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