Temporada Alta performing arts festival returns to pre-pandemic highs
31st edition of festival runs until December 12 at venues in Girona, Salt and beyond
The 2022 edition of the Temporada Alta festival has entered its final stretch, with audience numbers bouncing back to pre-pandemic levels.
The performing arts festival, which takes place mainly in the northern cities of Salt and Girona, is "better than 2019" in several aspects, its director Salvador Sunyer told the Catalan News Agency (ACN).
The 31st edition kicked off on October 7 with a program of 107 shows, 193 events and 42,450 seats available. Now, with less than a month to go until the end of the festival, 37,000 tickets have already been sold, 87% of the total on sale.
That figure is similar to pre-pandemic sales; in 2019 a total of 53,086 tickets were sold, 89% of those on sale.
New audiences, international connections
Sunyer believes that the festival – which features everything from circus to dance, live music to cinema – is reaching a wider audience than ever before.
"Selling tickets to people who like the theater is very easy," he says. The festival has set themselves the goal of reaching "everyone", a challenge that they have tackled better in 2022 than they did in 2019, Sunyer says, and something they hope to build on in the future.
The festival describes itself as a meeting point between the Catalan and international theatre scenes.
Forging "more international connections" has been a priority and one that is beginning to bear fruit. This year the festival has been involved in more European projects than ever before, Sunyer explains – large-scale productions involving five to seven partners from several countries. "More people are seeking us out than ever."
This year there are 17 international productions, 21 festival productions and co-productions, and 70 shows from Catalan creators, with 22 premieres in total.
Despite the success of Temporada Alta this year, Sunyer warns that tough times lie ahead for theatre companies.
There is palpable "concern" among programmers and artists for next season, with most predicting rising costs due to energy bills and a fall in spectators due to inflation affecting ticket prices.
There are also many productions from the last two years that "have not yet seen the light of day" because of the pandemic, Sunyer says.
Temporada Alta runs until December 12 at venues in Salt, Girona and beyond.