France's Avignon theatre festival cancelled due to epidemic

By: AFP      Published: 02:21 AM, 14 Apr, 2020
France's Avignon theatre festival cancelled due to epidemic

The annual theatre festival in the French city of Avignon, the world's most famous celebration of drama, has been cancelled because of the coronavirus outbreak, organisers said Monday.

"The conditions have not been met to allow the 74th edition to take place," organisers said in a statement. The festival had been set for July 3-23.

The organisers said that they had taken note of an address to the nation by President Emmanuel Macron earlier Monday on the coronavirus pandemic.

He said a gradual easing of France's lockdown could be allowed from May 11 but the big festivals could not take place until mid-July at the earliest, while cinemas and theatres must remain closed for now.

The virus outbreak has ravaged France's glittering spring and summer cultural calendar, with the Cannes film festival also not taking place as planned in May.