The lab aims to investigate the changing potential of theater in the new pandemic contexts. Inspired by the new quarantine norms, we want to rethink the role of existing forms of theater and focus on the possibility of inventing new ones corresponding to the new post-quarantine culture. By jeopardizing the traditional theatrical model, as well as key concepts for classical theater theories — actor-spectator interaction, spectator presence, present and simultaneity — epidemic constraints can give impulse to the development and practical application of alternative theories and models. Thus, restrictions can be the key to a fruitful creative search.

During the laboratory, with the help of curators and speakers, we will investigate how theater is able to adapt to change, to assess the manifestations of the main components of the theater (coexistence of spectators and actors, “here and now”). The history of the theater is the history of the constraints that stimulated its development. The pandemic threatened the existence of traditional forms of theater and at the same time opened up opportunities for creative understanding of new constraints. New quarantine rules can be an incentive to invent other forms of theater that will naturally attract a wider audience.

In the laboratory, we will look for where the most distant boundaries of the “here” lay, when the nearest ones are determined by sanitary and epidemiological norms. We will try to find the alternative “now” together, to experiment with time and space. Is it possible to play performances at a time other than in the evening? What can be their duration and number after the premiere? Just as in society, it is impossible to abolish physical co-presence in theater. Theater is a ritual of co-presence. Can theater’s response as an art of coexistence to a pandemic become a prototype for future social decisions? Can and does the theater have the right to return to the pre-pandemic norm?

Participation in the laboratory will be interesting for artists, performers, directors, producers without age restrictions or specialized education. Only 10 participants from all over Ukraine will be selected, the main criterion will be your experience, area of ​​interest and motivation. We will provide travel and accommodation in Kharkiv for four participants.

Promo video

Post laboratory video


Traumatic experience of the crisis has shown that most people are unable to see global processes of social transformation. Education, leisure, art strategies are shifting from mass to individual, which often do not require a physical stay in one space. And no, we are not inclining to the total theatrical digitalization. Together with artists from France, Austria, Germany and Czech Republic, we will explore practical cases of other types of work with the audience, which require minimal attendance or do not require a performer or actor nearby.

Victoria Myronyuk

Safe theater / Unsafe theater

Theatre maker and interdisciplinary artist. In her practice, she researches rituals, their structures, boundaries and potentials in interdisciplinary projects on the border of performative, participative practices and visual arts. Educational baggage: a course in the theory of culture at the Kyiv-Mohyla Academy, a master’s program in contemporary stage practices and visual culture in Madrid (MPECV), a postgraduate program in performance and scenography studies in Brussels (A.PASS)

Vika will talk about alternative types of theater and provide examples of existing safe forms, or those that can be easily adapted. Also, we will rethink the role of the emancipated spectator in the quarantine obstacles.
Together with the participants, she will try to answer the question of what kind of revolution is needed in the theater, how Covid-19 can help with this.

Nick Acorne

Interactive art and participative performances as a way to communicate with a viewer

Nick Acorne is a versatile sound artist, who works as composer, sound designer, interactive media artist and performer. Nick is the author of music and sound design for various theater performances in Ukraine, Austria, Germany and England. In musical works he balances between different genres, creates synergy, combining electronic and acoustic music. Nick was a co-founder of Some Designers, which creates interactive installations for festivals and museums in Austria, Germany and Italy for four years.

Nick is now a co-founder of Ninja Guru Art Studio, which also works with interactive technologies. He teaches sound design and visual arts at the University of Applied Sciences in Graz (FH Joanneum) and conducts sound design workshops in Austria, Germany, Slovenia and the Netherlands. In recent years, Nick has been involved in participatory performances.

In the laboratory, we will talk about participatory performances and interactive installations, share modern technology experiences as well as the new tools for interaction with the audience. The purpose of the workshop is not only to talk about current opportunities and outline certain tools for creating algorithms for engaging the audience, but also to discuss psychological principles of building a possible interaction between performer and audience.

Frederic Poty

Safe theatre: less audience or more space? A different way of relationship

Director, producer, artist, former director of the Avignon street Theater and new circus festival, “Festival Villeneuve en Scène”, Administrative Director THÉATRE DE LA MASSUE, Nice, France, member of the IETM Advisory Committee.

Frederick will talk about single-spectator theater and open-air theater, devised formats of theatre producing. Frederick will also share ideas for producing and touring in times of heightened security, project management in international collaborations.

Andre Erlen

(No) space for theater

Andre Erlen is a theater maker, curator of the URBÄNG! Theater and dance festival, and a teacher of theatrical skills at the Cologne Theater Academy, and works with various platforms in Europe and Asia. He creates theatrical and musical projects with singer and composer Marianna Sadovska. Andre studied at the Düsseldorf Academy of Arts and did an internship at the Gardzenice Theater Practice Center.

In the laboratory, Andre will focus on projects in the genre of site-specific, performances for small audiences and game forms of participation. He will also talk about “pop up” theater (theater that suddenly appears) and share his experience of theatrical interaction with non-theatrical institutions.

Max Schumacher

What’s at hand? How the audience gets a piece of the performance – media, performance and proximity

Max Schumacher – studied drama in Berlin and performance in New York. He is a co-founder of the Post Theater and works as a director, playwright, professor, and sometimes a media artist.

His works have been created and presented in more than 20 countries with a focus on the East (East Asia, Eastern Europe). Max received scholarships from the Fulbright Foundation, and studied at the Akademie Schloss Solitude (Stuttgart), Taipei Artist Village (Taiwan), Tokyo Wondersite (Japan), Solyst (Denmark), NES (Iceland), and others.

The main focus of his work is the relationship between man, technology and space. He will tell more about it in the laboratory. Most of his theatrical works are participatory media performances, so from a practical and theoretical point of view this will also be discussed.

Guy Biran

Workshop: Zoom in action

Guy Biran – theater director and mentor, since 1991. Till 2017 was an Artistic director of “Hazira” Performance Art Arena, Jerusalem. Specialized in site specific and documentary theater, he directed more than 20 plays in different genres, stages and festivals, in Israel and abroad. Has been teaching directing, acting and movement in many theater schools. Among them – Visual theater school Jerusalem, National school of drama, Delhi, Amsterdam’s theater-school.

During the Laboratory Guy will lead a workshop, in which participants will try to use Zoom in a new way to create their own audiowalk.

About us

Will you be the same when this is over?

Will the beautiful, beautiful, beautiful times that separate us from normal life return?

Rethink what you have. The past will not return, and the position of humble patience, waiting for the vaccine, lifting restrictions, overthrowing authoritarianism by someone else – leads to stagnation. This is the opinion of the Parade-fest and the Neft Theater team, which came together to create this laboratory. We have also invited coordinators from different sectors of culture for deeper and more extensive work.

Bohdan Hrytsiuk

Project manager of Jam Factory and the Human Rights Education Center in Lviv, actor, lecturer

Maksym Maksymchuk

Playwright, director, theater researcher, dramaturge based in Europe

Veronika Sklyarova

Program director of Parade-fest, lecturer, cultural manager

Artem Vusyk

Director and actor of the Beautiful Flowers Theater and the artistic director of the Neft Theater

Valerie Mykhalska

Cultural manager, lawyer of international law, expert in fundraising

Olena Apchel

Director, performer, cultural manager, lecturer in contemporary art, candidate of art history

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