Akko Festival: alternative Israeli theater at its best

akko festivalThe annual Akko Festival has slowly but surely evolved over its 30-odd year history into one of Israel’s premier cultural events.

The Israeli equivalent of Fringe Theater at its best, the Acco Festival takes place over four days during the Holy Days of the Sukkot holiday (usually in October).

The Acco Festival was first launched in 1980, and ever since has been at the forefront for high-quality, original theater in a colorful, vibrant atmosphere, against the background of historic Acco’s amazing Old City landscape.

The crowds that attend the Festival and always fill Acco’s performance halls and side streets, are testament to the hunger for the unconventional artistic endeavor of alternative theater. Nothing like getting up close and personal amid the ancient Crusader architecture of the Old City!

Every year the Festival features a competition for original plays at the Festival (see the link below for a list of the plays), and also features local and international theater troupes, street theater and outdoor shows, a concert stage, artisans’ displays, workshops, and other theater projects.

The Festival has also become a statement of coexistence between the Jews and Arabs that reside in Acco, with many Arab acts and music troupes taking part in the Festival; many of these projects even take on local Arab and Jewish youth for training.

And as Acco continues to brand itself under the tag “Acco – City of Mediterranean Cultures” and renovations abound throughout the city, has there been a better time to get your fill of some awesome Israeli fringe theater?

This year (2018) the Acco Festival runs from the 24-27 September.

See the official site for a full list of the scheduled street performances and for ticket details.

If you’re looking to spend some time in Acco exploring the sites and sounds beyond the Festival, check out our guide to what to see and do in the city.

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