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Alkantara is a Lisbon-based arts association.

We believe that the singular visions and explorations of artists can contribute to our shared reflections and to the development of more open, just, and attentive societies.

We encourage the porosity between artistic experimentation and contemporary debates. The projects we develop take dance, theatre, and live performance as their starting point, but they often draw from other artistic practices and areas of knowledge in order to bring different discourses and contexts into dialogue.

Brief history

The Alkantara Association carries forth the legacy of Danças na Cidade, founded by dancer Mónica Lapa (1965-2001) in 1993.

Danças na Cidade began as a dance platform. Its mission was to promote the work of the first generation of contemporary dance artists in Portugal, but the platform quickly evolved to become a dance festival of an international scale.

In 2005, Danças na Cidade became Alkantara, formally embracing other disciplines in the performing arts and strengthening collaborations with the main performing arts venues in Lisbon. Alkantara, from the Arabic word meaning 'the bridge', repositions itself as a bridge-builder between artists, audiences, cultures, and artistic disciplines.

In addition to the Danças na Cidade festival (1993-2002) and Alkantara Festival (2006-), the association has developed significant international partnerships and projects. Many of these projects created contexts for artists to meet and exchange practices, as well as to create new work in collaboration. Alkantara has coproduced and presented performances on several continents.

In 2007, the municipality of Lisbon granted Alkantara the use of the heritage building at 99 Calçada Marquês de Abrantes. Espaço Alkantara is the centre of the association's operations, with a year-round programme of arts residencies, informal showings, and training and research activities.

Beginning in 2020, the Alkantara Festival takes place every year in November.

Past projects

Danças na Cidade Festival (1993-2002)
1993 - coordinated and programmed by Mónica Lapa and Albino Moura
1994, 1995 - directed by Mónica Lapa
1996, 1997, 1999 - directed by Mónica Lapa and Mark Deputter
2002 - directed by Mark Deputter

Encontros Al Kantara (2004)
Directed by Mark Deputter

Alkantara Festival (2006-)
2006, 2008 - directed by Mark Deputter
2010, 2012, 2014, 2016, 2018 - directed by Thomas Walgrave
2020 - directed by Carla Nobre Sousa and David Cabecinha

International Projects
Dançar o que é nosso (1998-2003)
CoLABoratório (2006-2007)
Será o que fizermos (2007)
Nu Kre Bai Na Bu Onda (2007-2010)
Lugares Imaginários/Sites of Imagination (2007)
NXTSTP (2007-2017)
Départs (2009-2014)
Point(e) to Point (2009)
Global City/Local City (2012-2015)
Artista na Cidade (2012-2018)
2012 - Anne Teresa De Keersmaeker
2014 - Tim Etchells
2016 - Faustin Linyekula
2018 - Christiane Jatahy
Departures and Arrivals (2014-2018)
Urban Heat (2015-2017)
1Space (2015-2017)

Board (June 2021 - May 2025)

Chairs
Sandra Vieira Jürgens, Vítor Roriz

Board of directors
Carla Nobre Sousa (President), David Cabecinha (Vice-President), Magda Bizarro (Vice-President), Raquel Lima (Advisor), Ana Teresa Ascensão (Advisor), Liliana Coutinho (Advisor), Rodrigo Saturnino (Advisor)

Finance committee
Henrique Entratice, Gisela Casimiro, Nádia Yracema

Legal documents

Activity Report - 2019 (In Portuguese)

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