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Digital archive of Merida Festival

A Festival with a lot of history

The Mérida International Classical Theater Festival celebrates 90 years since it began in 1933, with the staging of Seneca’s Medea, in a version by Miguel de Unamuno and starring the actress Margarita Xirgu. Since then, the Festival has hosted performances of great comedies, Greek and Roman tragedies in the arena of the Roman Theater of Mérida as an honorary witness to the history of the Performing Arts that began 20 centuries ago.

The Mérida Festival has established itself as the oldest classical theater festival held in Spain and as the most important of its kind. In total, 68 editions have already been held, including the suspension of its celebration between 1934 and 1953 due to the political and social circumstances that existed in the country.

Jesús Cimarro, with his company Pentación Espectáculos, has been in charge of the direction and management of the festival since 2012. Therefore, Pentación Espectáculos, in collaboration with the Patronato Consortium of the City of Mérida, makes a new digital archive available to citizens which collects all the theatrical programming, images and press news generated in these latest editions of the Mérida Festival since 2012. The archive is open and available online for academics, researchers or any user interested in browsing the history of the last years of the Mérida Festival.

In the midst of the information age, one of the great obstacles to research is access to primary sources of historical documents and archives. According to its director, Jesús Cimarro, “a cultural event of the stature and relevance of the Mérida International Classical Theater Festival, with 90 years of history behind it, must preserve its history and also make it available to researchers, academics and everyone. “the public who wants to develop projects or studies about the Festival and its relevance for the evolution and history of the performing arts at a national and international level.”

Many theater professionals – actors, actresses, musicians, directors, authors, illuminators, costume designers – of national and international origin will continue to parade on the ancient stones of the Roman Theater of Mérida and above all, many more stories and characters from the Greco-Latin culture that, year after year, will become part of the history of the Mérida International Classical Theater Festival, making this new digital archive grow.

How do I browse the archive?

Once on the archive page, in the menu on the left, you can select from edition 58 (2012) onwards to the present. When we click on the name of the edition of interest, its theatrical programming will appear on the main page. On the right, through a new index, you can navigate through the different activities, off programming and other data parallel to the main programming of the edition that you have selected.

To go back, you will see that at the top of the file page a horizontal menu will appear as you navigate where the path followed to reach the current page will be drawn and thus, you can return to the previous ones by just clicking in his own name.