The Inspiration Festival 2018

The 4th Annual Inspiration Art Festival will be held from 20 July to 5 August 2018 at VDNH. Over the first three years of its existence, it has become one of the landmark events of Moscow in the summer. The peculiarity of the Inspiration Festival is that each year its programme is dedicated to one genre or one important topic in the art, and the playbill presents relevant, unusual and scale works, reveals the different facets of the chosen direction — from true classics to amazing experiments.

Detailed programme available at:

This year theme is a theatre, for which the art directors Roman Dolzhansky and Ingeborga Dapkunaite are responsible. The entire territory of the Country's Main Exhibition will somehow be involved in theatrical performances from different parts of the world. For example, on VDNH's birthday on 1 August, the French theatre Les Plasticiens Volants will present "A Space Odyssey" show, during which the sky and the earth will be filled with giant figures. And rock singer Katie Avram together with the artist and director Pierre Berthelot (French theatre Générik Vapeur) will "revive" the gigantic 19-metre high construction made of sea containers.

The festival will be opened on 20 July by the world-famous German-Swiss group Rimini Protokoll. They will present not just a performance, but a kind of sociological research — the Situation Rooms project. Its central figures are 20 people from all over the world who know first-hand what war is all about. The audience will plunge together with them into the disturbing atmosphere of what is happening in the world, going on a journey through the labyrinth of rooms and countries. Ksenia Peretrukhina, a well-known modern artist and owner of two Golden Masks, will "throw" installations-surprises on the Central Alley of VDNH, in which both the intimacy and publicity of the theatre can become part of the unexpected personal experience of any passer-by.

"However, this is not the theatre that viewers are used to seeing during the theatrical season at large and small theatrical venues in Moscow," says Roman Dolzhansky. "In the summer off-season you will not find interpretations of classical or modern plays in our main programme, you will not see popular actors in famous roles. But you can see unusual performances that you will not find on the stages of typical theatres. The Inspiration playbill features a theatre outside the theatre, a theatre near the theatre and even a theatre without a theatre: a synthetic show at the edge of ballet and circus, an impressive open-air show, an adventure journey through mysterious spaces and even a public installation in which everyone can almost unwittingly become not only a spectator but an actor..."

Ingeborga Dapkunaite: "We wanted to put into the mini-city of VDNH a theatre that could use the opportunity to work with a unique space, and the club theatre for the House of Culture, and the theatre-journey like Situation Rooms, and finally, the physical theatre, which corresponds to the mood of space. In other words, we wanted to fill the space of VDNH with an event theatre."

The Italian theatre NoGravity will show a "miracle theatre" right on the Garden Pond in the Ostankino park, where the unique Stage on the Water has been running for the second consecutive season. The amazing Aria show, which captured the leading European festivals, is reminiscent of the Italian baroque and is built on a bizarre plastic game and work with a unique stage machinery. The bodies of the actors unite into unusual figures, fly above the stage accompanied by the Roma barocca essemble and the ancient instruments made by the masters in the Baroque era.

Special programmes will be an integral part of the festival playbill. The first is timed to the end of the restoration of the House of Culture, a genuine pearl of the architectural "big style" of VDNH, one of the main legacies of the last century. Here the theatre will meet not so much with architecture as with literature — the Names programme will present outstanding Russian writers from the twentieth century. Specially for the festival, Gleb Cherepanov will specially produce All Shades of Black, a story about Sasha Cherny, the famous poet of the Silver Age. Vladimir Eremin, the Honoured Artist of Russia, is in the lead role. The playwright and writer Lyudmila Petrushevskaya will arrange the Anniversary Cabaret on the stage in celebration of her 80th birthday. The Theatre of Nations will show two solo performances from the series "Our Everything..." based on the works of Joseph Brodsky and Nodar Dumbadze. Alexander Filippenko prepared for the festival a new programme "Hello Mikhail Mikhailovich!", inspired by two legendary Mikhail — Zoshchenko and Zhvanetsky.

In the second special programme, the theatre will meet with one more great art — cinema. Documentary films to be shown at the Inspiration 2018 Festival are vivid examples of how film directors exploit the means offered by other kinds of performing arts, what they represent today and what art forms are more interesting and relevant. In some films the creators simply use theatrical means, in others they make the theatre an immediate place of action, a theme or a plot-forming object. Also a youth student programme of performances will be held during the festival.

Admission to the Aria and the Situation Rooms performances and events in the House of Culture will have paid admission, and tickets can be purchased at or at VDNH's ticket offices. Ticket price: from 500 roubles.

Admission to the other festival events is free.

20 July – 5 August 2018