A NATURAL AND LIVING ENVIRONMENT LIKE NO OTHER
FRIBOURG – A FLOURISHING CENTRE OF CULTURE
When it comes to population size (300,000 residents), the canton of Fribourg is on a par with Nice (France), Karlsruhe (Germany) and Bari (Italy). When it comes to cultural life, however, Fribourg is in a different league to its European counterparts. For proof, you need look no further than the impressive number of theatres dotted across the region. For lovers of theatre and other performing arts, the canton of Fribourg has much to offer. Take the Équilibre auditorium (see photograph) in Fribourg city centre, for example. While not everyone appreciates its avant-gardist architecture, the 700-seat auditorium successfully draws in the crowds with its diverse and inclusive programme, ranging from theatre, dance and concerts, right up to contemporary circus and even opera. As Laurent Bourgknecht, the Administrative Director, explains, “Our theatre is a state-of-the-art and incredibly flexible performance facility. Performing arts professionals, from Switzerland and elsewhere, frequently come to us in search of inspiration.” Fribourg can rightly be proud of Équilibre. For a city this size, the theatre has enjoyed incredible success.”
For theatre-goers who prefer a more intimate setting, there is L’Arbanel, in Treyvaux. According to Dominique Rapilly, a member of the booking team, “The artists and audience who come here appreciate its welcoming and special atmosphere. Our theatre, with its wooden beams and red bricks, is a real beauty!” Like the Théâtre des Osses and Nuithonie, in Greater Fribourg, L’Arbanel is renowned far and wide for the quality of its productions. Further south, in the heart of verdant Gruyère, is the 750-seat CO2, the largest auditorium in the canton. It offers an events calendar that includes headline acts as well as novel, new talent. “Unlike other theatres, we are not primarily in the business of developing our own productions, though it does happen from time to time”, explains Dominique Rime, head booker at CO2. No matter, the public is clearly spoilt for choice!
Some theatres in and around Fribourg: