Interview with Anja Dirks. Festival Belluard Bollwerk International 2016


Festival director Anja Dirk

Festival director Anja Dirk

Anja Dirks, Theatre Director with experience in all German-speaking countries, directs the Belluard festival Fribourg since two years. chrigu could have a short interview with her during the last evening of this years’ edition.

chrigu: This edition of the Belluard Festival seems to deal a lot with music in general, right?

Anja Dirks: Yes, music became kind of a subtheme of this years Belluard. Almost every event
deals in a certain way with music in its widest sense. Our main theme is ‘Living Traditions’,
but suddenly we realized that the program became enormously musical.

chrigu: one of the most impressive shows I’ve ever seen was a production by Philippe Quesne, Paris.
Do you still work with him?

AD: Yes. I know him very well. He’s a good friend of mine.

Our festival is dedicated to young, promising talents. And Philippe Quesne meanwhile became one of the most
important figures of the french theater scene. He directs one of the biggest theaters in France, and he still tours around the globe. I just had a phone call with him recently. His most successive production is about to be played for the 200th time soon. And he proposed to do this special show here at Belluard. And I said that we would have to break down some walls here to get enough space for it. Many artists from the whole world have played here long before they became really famous.

chrigu: How is the ratio between international productions and works by residents here?

AD: It always depends on the propositions. But i think its very important to support local projects that would not have a good opportunity to present themselves here in the common Fribourg halls. And to try to put them in our general artistic context can be very interesting.

chrigu: Opera Lousie is also a very good production.

AD: Yes. They are all local opera singers. And they worked on a subject very closely connected to Fribourg culture. The result is really convincing.

chrigu: Are there still about 500 propositions for one edition of the Festival Belluard Bollwerk International?

AD: There were 411 this year. Always impressive.

chrigu: Did you already work a lot in Switzerland before Belluard?

AD: 2004 until 2008 i worked for the ‘Theater Gessnerallee’ in Zürich. And then after a year in Vienna and four years in Germany i came here. And it all works out really fine.

chrigu: I would say a director with your portfolio is a huge profit for the Belluard. Did you know it long before it became an option for you?

AD: Sure. I already collaborated with two directors before Sally de Kunst, who was responsible here for the years 2007 – 2013. So it has always been on my radar. There were also private reasons to come back to Switzerland. So everything was pretty set up. And what is also nice is the fact that i can live my bilingualism here again.

chrigu: So you will stay here for another few years?

AD: Yes, I really think so.

chrigu: Thanks a lot