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“One of the bravest and most inspired underground troupes on the planet”New York Times (2015)

About the event

Burning Doors is presented by ArtReach as part of Journeys Festival International.

In this blazingly contemporary new work, Belarus Free Theatre combines forces with Pussy Riot’s Maria Alyokina to share stories of persecuted artists, living under dictatorship, who will not be silenced.

Burning Doors interrogates what happens to people when they are declared enemies of the state simply for making art. How the meaning of home and displacement reframes under systematic coercion and ideological warfare.

This brand new production blends sensuous theatricality and vigorous physicality to evoke the plight of people displaced by political persecution and conflict in Europe today. It aims to shine a light on total suppression of artistic freedoms, drawn from the real-life stories of iconoclastic Russian performance artist Petr Pavlensky, incarcerated Ukrainian filmmaker Oleg Sentsov and Pussy Riot’s Maria Alyokhina.

Belarus Free Theatre is the first refugee-led theatre company in the UK and the only theatre in Europe banned by its government on political grounds. Burning Doors draws on the company’s own experience of political oppression and continues their campaign to stand up for artistic freedom and human rights across the globe, reminding us, once again, that theatre can be a revolutionary art.


Age guidance: from 16+ (subject to parental guidance)
Scenes of male/female nudity and of torture
Performed in Russian and Belarusian, with English surtitles.