Transforma cultural space opens in Almaty, invites young creative theatre groups to collaborate

ASTANA – The Transforma cultural space opened in Almaty Oct. 21 with the premiere of “B.O.Q.” staged by Laboratory No.316, an independent theatrical company. The multidisciplinary site offers room for theatre productions, dance and music events, film screenings, exhibitions, lectures and other creative projects.

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The venue is located at SmArt Point, the largest Central Asian co-working centre in Kazakhstan. The Kazakh-language play directed by Kuba Adylov will also be presented Nov. 1, 3 and 4.

“The Reasons to Live,” a multimedia show by director Viktor Nemchenko will be included Oct. 25 as part of the Dramcom virtual platform. The project will be broadcast live on the Internet, offering the audience an opportunity to interact with the characters in real time. The play brings together four extraordinary women, revealing the details of their destiny.

“The Transforma cultural space’s philosophy is to be free in terms of space transformation. The space should and can be transformed into project requests. We can hold performances, concerts, lectures and many other things here. Usually the project adapts to the conditions of the site; now, the stage easily and harmoniously adapts to the requirements of a particular project,” Transforma Artistic Director Antoine Doukravets told The Astana Times prior to the opening.

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Transforma Artistic Director Antoine Doukravets.

“The preparatory work is underway to create projects dedicated to independent and experimental theatre groups with the support of the Soros Foundation. The British Council supported us at the stage of developing space design,” he added.

The space does not have a permanent acting troupe and the task of the artistic director is to set project direction based on certain principles.

“New faces and new names are our first principle,” noted Doukravets. “Talented people are in need of a theatre platform, especially those who do not have their own premises. Our space is perfect for rehearsal and performances. The second is experimental principle. We aim for our projects to bring something new. We want people to unite creative groups and perform extraordinary and avant-garde performances. The third principle is relevance. We support projects that reflect our reality. For example, what is happening in our society, what people think and discuss, what problems they face.”

Transforma is open to cooperation and experiment.

“The first month is preparatory for us. We are looking for interesting projects and teams who want to perform on our stage. We are also open for musical and lecture projects. Our mission is to develop and open new projects, to support young creative teams and promote new approaches to the creation of art. We believe that experiment and innovation are the cornerstones of contemporary art and development and progress are impossible without them,” he said.