International network
for contemporary
performing arts

Réseau international
pour les arts du spectacle

Rete internazionale
per le arti performative


Internationales Netzwerk
für zeitgenössische
darstellende Künste

Международная сеть современного 

Red internacional
para las artes escénicas

Internationaal netwerk
voor hedendaagse

თანამედროვე საშემსრულებლო
საერთაშორისო ქსელი

Rede internacional
para as artes performativas

الشبكة الدولية
لفنون الأداء

í sviðslistum

Xarxa internacional
d'arts escèniques

Rhwydwaith rhyngwladol
ar gyfer celfyddydau
perfformio cyfoes

Rrjeti ndërkombëtar
për artet skenike

Διεθνές δίκτυο
για σύγχρονες
παραστατικές τέχνες

Međunarodna mreža 
za savremene 
scenske umjetnosti

Mezinárodní síť 
pro současné 
divadelní umění

International netværk
for kontemporær

Internasionale netwerk
vir kontemporêre
uitvoerende kunste

თანამედროვე საშემსრულებლო
საერთაშორისო ქსელი

Nemzetközi hálózat
a kortárs


líonra idirnáisiúnta
na taibhealaíona

Starptautiskais tīkls
skatuves mākslai

Netwerk internazzjonali
għall-arti performattivi

Międzynarodowa sieć
na rzecz współczesnych sztuk

Internationellt nätverk
för samtida

Međunarodna mreža
savremenih izvođačkih

Международна мрежа
за съвременни
сценични изкуства

Rrjet ndërkombëtar
për arte skenike

Міжнародная сетка
перфарматыўных мастацтваў

Međunarodna mreža
za suvremene
izvedbene umjetnosti


kaasaegsete etenduskunstide

현대 공연 예술을 위한 국제 네트워크

Tarptautinis tinklas
scenos menai

Интернационална мрежа
за современа
изведувачка уметност

شبکۀ بین المللی
برای هنرهای نمایشی معاصر

Rețeaua internațională
pentru artele spectacolului

Medzinárodná sieť
pre súčasné
scénické umenie

gösteri sanatları için
uluslararası iletişim ağı

IETM – International network for contemporary performing arts is one of the oldest and largest international cultural networks, representing the voice of over 500 performing arts organisations and individual professionals working in the contemporary performing arts worldwide.


We advocate the value of the arts and culture and empower performing arts professionals through access to international connections, knowledge and a dynamic forum for exchange. We work to stimulate the quality, development and context of the contemporary performing arts, in all their diversity. 

What we do

We create opportunities for our members and the international performing arts community at large by organising networking activities, peer-to-peer learning, exchanges and dialogues via various events. 

We also commission publications and research, facilitate communication and distribution of information about the performing arts and advocate for the position of performing arts professionals, worldwide.


Our members are organisations and freelancers working worldwide in the contemporary performing arts. Our members represent all performing arts disciplines: theatre, dance, circus, street arts, mime, music theatre, new media, performance art, interdisciplinary live art forms, puppetry and object theatre, site-specific work, participatory performance, and more. 

Our members include artistic companies, collectives, organisations, festivals, venues, residencies, producers and independent artists, theatres and dance houses, cultural/research/resource centres, fellow artistic and cultural networks, universities and institutional bodies. They work in all aspects of international cooperation: education, creation, production, presentation, curation, promotion, support, research.

Associate Members

Our Associate Members are organisations providing support to the performing arts field, in their own country as well as internationally. IETM Associate Members are official bodies, ministries, arts councils, public funding organisations and foundations. They have the same rights as other members but their higher fee includes a support grant to the network. We provide our Associate Members with a special forum for peer exchange and feed them with information on our activities and policy developments.

Our vision for equity, diversity and inclusion

We aim to create a more inclusive contemporary arts field by helping our members to diversify their organisations and work, and stimulating underrepresented performing arts professionals to join our activities and the network, regardless of their background, ethnicity, gender, sexual orientation, physical abilities, social conditions, working and employment status, age, career path and geographical location.

Read our IDEA strategy


The smooth operations of the network are run on a daily basis by the IETM Secretariat, based in Brussels, Belgium. Our international team always welcomes questions and enquiries, as well as new projects and ideas. Contact us now.

Governance and structure

IETM is an association based in Brussels and operating under Belgian law. Our governance and our organisational structure reflect the current functioning and aspirations of the network. You can learn more about our structure and meet our Board of Directors, Secretary General and Advisory Committee on this page.


We are often in touch with the press and are regularly mentioned in the international media. We collect this information in the media room, along with our latest newsletters, logos and graphic guidelines.


Our members guarantee the operation of our network through their annual membership fee. We are grateful to our members and our structural funders:

Co-funded eu


Facts and figures
Date of birth: 1981
Place of birth: Polverigi, Italy, during the Festival of Polverigi
First meeting: 15 October 1981, Théâtre Gérard Philippe, Paris
Members: over 500 from more than 50 countries
Organisations founded or co-founded: Roberto Cimetta Fund (arts mobility in the Mediterranean), On The Move (mobility web portal), Balkan Express (platform for collaboration in and with the Balkans), ICARJ (International Coalition for Arts, Human Rights and Social Justice), European Alliance for Culture and the Arts.
Annual turnover (managed directly through the Secretariat): app. € 500.000
Annual expenditure for the network, adding in partners and co-organisers’ budgets: at least € 1.000.000

IETM was founded in 1981 at an informal gathering of performing arts professionals at the Polverigi Festival (now called Inteatro festival) in Italy. It was a time when international collaboration was to a large extent performed by and through governmental and intergovernmental institutions. As one of the first European cultural networks, it was founded by and for professionals to create a space of exchange and strengthen international collaboration in the thriving independent performing arts sector in Europe.


IETM developed, organising ‘meetings’ twice a year with debates and performance programmes, but without a formal association, structure or status. In 1989, it became a not-for-profit international organisation under Belgian law with a Secretariat and membership fees.
From 1989, IETM (a predominantly EU-based membership) was active in including colleagues from Central, Eastern and South-Eastern Europe, and from 1994, those from the countries around the Mediterranean. From 2003, IETM also became active as a bridge between its professional members in Europe and those in Asia (including Central Asia), Africa and the Americas, although its main membership still comes from Europe.
With the number of members growing consistently each year, and representing an increasingly diverse range of interdisciplinary contemporary performing arts, in 2005 IETM dropped its original title Informal European Theatre Meeting to become simply ‘IETM’ with the tagline ‘International network for contemporary performing arts”.