To participate in AITU-IUTA's 9th World Congress of University Theatre: Traditions; Research; Experimentation: The Essential Elements of Contemporary University Theatre, that will take place from July 2-6, 2012, at the Belarusian State University in Minsk, Belarus. Please see below and for complete and detailed info please go to the congress' website at: 

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Traditions; Research; Experimentation: 
The Essential Elements of Contemporary University Theatre 

Minsk, Belarus: July 2–6, 2012 

The International University Theatre Association ( was established during the Founding Congress at Université de Liège (Belgium) in 1994 to develop and promote theatre training, creation, and theoretical and practical research, at the level of university or higher studies. The AITU-IUTA is represented on five continents and has members in over 50 countries. 
Designed by and for people from universities and other types of post-secondary learning institutions, the AITU-IUTA is a unique forum where teachers, practitioners, creators, scholars and theorists can share discoveries and discuss common concerns. The Association provides a space for exchanges and services, and is open to all members of the academic community with an interest in theatre. 
Since the Belgium Congress, the AITU-IUTA has been holding a World Congress essentially every two years, including in Valleyfield, Quebec (Canada) (1997); Dakar, Senegal (1999); Krakow, Poland (2001); Olympia, Greece (2003); Urbino, Italy (2006); Puebla, Mexico (2008); and Leicester, United Kingdom (2010). In 2012, the IX World Congress will be hosted in Minsk by the Belarusian State University. 
The Belarusian State University ( is a leading scientific, educational, innovation and cultural centre of the Republic of Belarus. The University draws on the best domestic and international experience to respond to the intellectual, cultural and social interests of the individual, society and the state, and to facilitate the sustainable development of the country. 
For eight years the University has been organizing the Teatralny Koufar International Student Theatre Festival, which is recognized as one of the leading festivals of University Theatre in Europe and post-Soviet countries. The Festival showcases the best artistic achievements in university and youth theatres. Its diversity of nationalities and practices provides an opportunity for enhancement of worldwide artistic exchanges and cultural understanding. 
It is with great pleasure that we invite you to take part in the IX World Congress and to contribute to the international theatre movement! For any further information, please, do not hesitate to contact us any minute or visit our webpage: 

Congress' THEME 
Traditions; Research; Experimentation: the Essential Elements of Contemporary University Theatre 

In the world of theatre in general and university theatre in particular, there is a marked renewal of interest in cultural, anthropological and even properly theatrical traditions. We think that this movement, which is observable in many countries around the world, goes beyond the well-known mechanisms of identity-building and resistance to the standardization of practices that promote colonialism and globalization. The very fact that this movement should arise now, and so emphatically, deserves our full attention. 

In theatre, we are indeed going through an extraordinary new period characterized by: 
1. the massive use of sound and image reproduction technologies on stage and in the very process of theatrical creation; and 
2. a general trend toward hybridization in cultural and artistic practices, the borders and locations of which are becoming increasingly blurred. 

Falling back on tradition in such a context may be perceived as a survival reflex, a desire for something to hold onto in a radically changing world that is viewed with concern, but it may also be understood as an instrument for transformation and change, with tradition contributing in a novel way to the renewal of the current theatre scene. 

In addition to redefining relationships between the present and the past, the local and the global, this growing and dynamic use of tradition provides practitioners of theatre, and of university theatre in particular, with new forms of expression, new ways of doing things, new topics and new dramatic characters. 

That is why, while wishing to encourage participants to examine the theme of tradition from the standpoint of collective or individual identity-building, we would like to broaden deliberations about these new forms and functions of tradition in contemporary theatre, and which can be seen to a remarkable degree in university theatre. 

We plan to have three areas of focus for the scholarly work. Proposals should of course include a historical dimension; they may also be centred on the role of new technologies in this renewal: 

Area of focus 1: Experimenting with traditions 
This area is devoted to examining productions and creative processes that make unusual use of traditions, whether cultural or theatrical. 
Area of focus 2: Representing traditions 
This area concerns creative productions and processes designed for audiences who are totally or partially unaware of certain traditions. How are these repr
esentations of tradition performed and what role do new technologies play in them? 
Area of focus 3: Using traditions as a form of resistance 
This area explores the use of tradition as a way of identity-building and resisting threats of assimilation, such as the standardization of practices and cultures, in certain communities.