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More than the carrots theater

On February 27, 2010, a show by the local amateur company inaugurated the new Teatre de Bescanó with the show Traspunt. Yesterday, Alba Nova took to the stage again to celebrate the tenth anniversary of a facility that, in addition to launching a campaign to increase cultural VAT from a village of 5,000 neighbors, internationally, it has consolidated eclectic programming, open to commercial theater, but also to new stage formats and also to music.

“The Bescanó theater has been a commitment of the municipality, and the three mayors who have been through the city council since 2010 – Xavier Soy, Pere Lluís Garcia and Xavier Vinyoles – have believed, and this is not something that happens often, “explains the director of the Bescanó Theater, Quim Marcé.

The space, an old building at La Grober, was managed for years by the Alba Bescanonina Cultural Association as a social center, until in 2010 a remodeling was completed, preserving elements such as the façade or the original format of the stage theater, adapted the space to the current technical needs to host theatrical, dance, music or film shows.

“From the beginning it was clear that we wanted to be a village theater, but with a professional operation, betting on professional companies and with as popular prices as we could,” says Marcé about the theater, which in this decade has programmed 540 proposals that have been viewed by 126,223 viewers.

The first years, he points out, were the ones to crush stone to become known in an environment with many cultural offerings nearby, both in Girona and Salt. This helped, for example, to find the complicity of the Temporada Alta festival from the beginning.

“It’s not the same thing to start fighting High Season as to start by going hand in hand. Being part of the programming and often hosting stays with companies and artists prior to the premiere of their shows, as was the case with Albert Pla or Sergi López, and they came out happy with the equipment, then allow them to keep in touch with them and make it easier to schedule them later, “he continues.

Music performances, which also include taking part in festivals such as the Black Music Festival or more recently the In-Dream, are also a hallmark of Bescanonian theater, as Marcé is also responsible for programming the Mirona de Salt. The ARC Awards given by the live music industry have recognized the effort by nominating them on occasion, with more budget-friendly venues such as the Barcelona Auditorium.

But if there was one fact that marked a turning point in the evolution of the theater, it was the famous protest against cultural VAT in 2012, when it decided to sell carrots instead of tickets to avoid the increase in tax for shows up to 21%. The initiative, which has been replicated elsewhere, has attracted the interest of media from all over the world. “It was an unpaid advertising campaign and that season was very noticeable,” recalls Marcé.

Since then, the theater has continued to run promotional campaigns to reward faster viewers with more juicy discounts than last-minute buyers.

The Amics del Teatre project, which brings together partners interested in benefits such as discounts, access to general rehearsals or special promotions, currently scrubs the 7,000 cards and, although the largest group is that of the residents of the municipality, then those in Girona already sell, Jump and Fourth.

All this has meant that of the 103,597 euros that the theater invested in programming last year – an amount that does not include, therefore, personal or operating expenses -, 100,631 came directly from the ticket sale. , numbers that are not common.


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