A crowd in front of the Haus der Berliner Festspiele

© Berliner Festspiele, photo: Fabian Schellhorn

Open Campus

The Theatertreffen’s Open Campus is the place where international students and pupils from Berlin’s schools can meet and create networks.


Coordination: Laura Hänel
Tel +49 30 254 89 281

The Open Campus provides a place to connect and debate in the context of the festival to students from subjects connected to the theatre. Students from universities, art academies and theatre institutes will attend selected performances of Theatertreffen’s and the additional programme of the festival to begin an exchange about aesthetic and socio-political issues as well as (their own) future designs for the theatre.

Since 2018, school pupils from Berlin have been visiting Theatertreffen in the framework of a workshop in co-operation with LiteraturInitiative Berlin (LIN), gathering their first experiences as a critical audience. The impressions of the pupils are published on the Theatertreffen-Blog

Participants 2024

  • Hochschule für Musik, Theater und Medien Hannover (HMTM) – Dramaturgy
  • Hochschule für Musik und Theater Rostock – Acting
  • Hochschule für Schauspielkunst Ernst Busch, Berlin – Directing
  • Hochschule für Gestaltung Offenbach am Main (HfG) – Stage and Costume Design
  • Theatreacademy | Uniarts Helsinki – Contemporary Performance & Dramaturgy
  • Arndt-Gymnasium Dahlem, Berlin
  • Rheingau-Gymnasium, Berlin
  • Schadow-Gymnasium Berlin
  • Willi-Graf Gymnasium, Berlin


The Open Campus was launched in 2012. As part of this format, emerging actors, directors, dramaturgs, scenographers and theatre scholars from universities, art academies and theatre institutes from the German-language regions attend the Theatertreffen’s performances and discourse programme. Through workshops and discussions with artists and the festival team, students come into contact with different aesthetics and ways of working.

In 2018, the Open Campus opened up to include school students from Berlin as part of a cooperation with LiteraturInitiative Berlin (LIN). During the 2018 and 2019 festivals, they focussed on one or two selected Theatertreffen events. These visits were complemented by talks with participating artists which were moderated by the students themselves to make sure that the young people’s perspective were at the centre of these talks.

In 2020, the Open Campus had to be cancelled at short notice due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

In 2021, the Open Campus was hosted online. Apart from Zoom-meetings with participants of the selection of ten invited productions, Stückemarkt-authors and the festival team, various online networking options among the various groups of students were provided. In addition, a one-week analogue workshop on New York’s Living Theatre was hosted in cooperation with the Hanover University of Music, Drama and Media as part of the festival’s “Focus Living Theatre”. Under the guidance of actors Marcel Kohler and Nils Strunk and in cooperation with the former Living Theatre Member Thomas Walker, eight acting students developed performative acts and reflected on the Living Theatre from today’s perspective.

Since 2021, a workshop programme in performance analysis has been hosted for the students of the Berlin cooperation schools of LiteraturInitiative Berlin. Theatre scientist Torsten Jost guides the students in exploring their own perception in the theatre and in finding out about new perspectives. The students then note down their own impressions in texts that are published on the Theatertreffen-Blog.

Since its inception, an annual intake of between 100 and 150 students from schools and universities have taken part in Theatertreffen’s Open Campus-programme. The Open Campus was founded by Yvonne Büdenhölzer. Anneke Wiesner was the project’s director from 2013 to 2022. Laura Hänel has been coordinating the Open Campus since 2023.

During the 2023 Theatertreffen, there was an extended exchange between the participants of the Open Campus and the fellows of the International Forum and the Theatertreffen-Blog.