Talking about Borders

In season 2016/2017, the International Drama Contest will take place in Czech Republic and Slovakia.

Here you will find the rules of the International drama contest 2016/2017

The International Drama Contest TALKING ABOUT BORDERS ‒ the most important of its kind within the Eastern European region for more than ten years ‒ and its initiator and director Dr. Christian Papke have been closely linked to the Nuremberg State Theatre since season 2014/2015, its drama department being the host and premiere location. Following the first successful year, TALKING ABOUT BORDERS will keep extending the international network of the Theatre in the next seasons to come with a diverse festival schedule in June 2015 and premieres of award-winning plays such as Christoph Mehler’s staging of Basa Janikashvili’s Georgian “Angry Bird” and the approaching “The Lottery/Women of War” by Armenian Karine Khodikyan on April 2nd 2016. The Süddeutsche Zeitung calls it the State Theatre’s “great merit” and praises the support of new talents along with a view beyond German borders.

In season 2015/2016, the International Drama Contest will take place in Poland.This year’s choice of partner country does not only build on the intense and vibrant German-Polish town twinning between Nuremberg and Krakow. It also foregrounds the current social and culture-political changes in Poland under the leadership of the absolute majority-party “Law and Justice” and the dramatically escalating situation of the local artists, who are increasingly pressurised by the ultraconservative faction. Until May 15th 2016, Polish authors are invited to submit their drama plays on the subject of “Talking about Borders. Living in times of social change”. An international jury rates the submitted texts and awards the author of the best play with prize money totalling 3.500 Euro, the translation of the text into German language plus the play’s premiere at the State Theatre Nuremberg in season 2016/2017.

Important cultural institutions participate as cooperation partners in this year’s drama contest, among them up to now the “Nuremberg House” in Krakow, the festival office Krakowskie Biuro Festiwalow, the institute Adam Mickiewicza, the international theatre festival „Boksa Komedia“, the Krakow UNESCO City of Literature, the city of Krakow, the theatre institute „Instytut Teatralny“ in Warsaw and the association of Polish dramatists and dramaturgs. Supporters and partners in Nuremberg, the city of peace and human rights, are the Cultural Department of Nuremberg, the Office for International Relations, the International Human Rights Film Festival and the “Krakow House”.

In summer 2016, it will happen again: from June 23rd to 26th, the Schauspielhaus and Richard-Wagner-Platz will turn into festival locations with Poland as focal point. Apart from the award ceremony for this year’s drama contest winner, workshop productions of Polish theatre literature, a Polish film series, concerts, readings and panel discussions, a guest performance by a Polish theatre will be offered on that weekend. The precise programme will be published in April.



In 2004 Christian Papke initialized the drama –and theater project TALKING ABOUT BORDERS which became only one year later one of the most successful of their kind. East European authors, who mainly deal with the attitude to life in time of social changes, are invited to hand in their pieces to the drama contest. The target is to get to know the Eastern people through their artistic achievement and contemporary contributions better. Along these lines, ‘talking about borders’ also means to help to overcome boundaries to some extent. Furthermore, the project also offers the opportunity of exchanging ideas in a direct way – not at least for the city of Nuremberg, because of their increasing number of Eastern European population.

Until now, over hundreds of authors from Macedonia, Serbia, Croatia, Bosnia-Herzegovina, Albania, Bulgaria, Rumania, Ukraine and Georgia have been participated in the contest. Thanks to the competition, the dramatists are able to proof their creative expression on an international level and get attention of Western Europe.


In 1974, Dr. Christian Papke was born in Basel. He grew up in Germany, Brasil and lives in Vienna. After three final degrees, Papke works as a freelance director and dramaturg: His own creations, often transcending genres, brought him to Schauspielhaus Graz, Konzerthaus Wien, ORF Radiokulturhaus Wien, Thalia Theater Hamburg, Saxon Gerhardt-Hauptmann-Theater, State Theater Karlsruhe, southern German Füssen, Italian Duino, Tel Aviv, Jerusalem, Kosovo, Serbian Atelje 212 Belgrad, the international theater festival BITEF in Belgrad, MESS in Sarajevo or MOT in Skopje, National Theater Tirana, State Opera Tirana, Rustaveli theatre Tiflis or the Rumanian National Theater Temeswar.
In 2006 Papke became the youngest member of the Austrian P.E.N.-Club. Because of his great merits, Christian Papke was honoured by the Federal Republic of Bulgaria.
He also writes for radio stations, newspapers (latest: DIE WELT), TV stations, makes his own documentaries, has published several audio books, had his own TV show BÜHNE EUROPA on ARD-ALPHA in 2013/2014, produced by ORF, and is responsible for the drama –and theater project TALKING ABOUT BORDERS at the State Theater Nuremberg since 2014.