IDFA signs lease contract for unique documentary cinema in Amsterdam

    • News
    • April 6, 2023
    • By the staff

    IDFA has been given the opportunity to realize a long-standing dream by the Municipality of Amsterdam: An open and inclusive space for documentary film and art in the city’s iconic Vondelpark. The new location will offer a year-round program of screenings and events for audiences, film industry professionals, and school children.

    The lease contract to the Vondelpark Pavilion was signed this week with the Municipality of Amsterdam, following which the renovations of the historic building can officially begin. After the summer, IDFA will commence with 'pilot programming', with the Vondelpark Pavilion slated to become a festival location in November. The official opening will be next spring, when the space will open its doors to anyone looking to be inspired by the art of documentary—from special film screenings on the silver screen to immersive installations and workshops, from debates to networking opportunities.

    The Vondelpark Pavilion is the prime location for IDFA to expand on two key focus points in the program: talent development and attracting new and young audiences. The location also aligns perfectly with IDFA’s ambitions of developing beyond an annual film festival taking place in November, to establishing IDFA as a frontrunning, year-round institute for creative documentary film.

    Touria Meliani (Deputy Mayor Art and Culture): “It’s excellent that IDFA will be finding a new home in Vondelpark Pavilion. Our city will gain a new, accessible stage for documentary film, with screenings available to a broad and diverse audience throughout the year. I am also extremely enthusiastic about IDFA’s plans to dedicate space to talent development and educational programs.”

    Loyal partners—such as Fonds 21 EXTRA, Brook Foundation, BPD Cultuurfonds, Gemeente Amsterdam, Prins Bernhard Cultuurfonds, the Ministry for Education, Culture and Science, and all IDFA Friends and Special Friends—have been committed to supporting the plans from the start. Additional encouraging conversations have been conducted with both established and new partners.

    IDFA launched a crowdfunding campaign in November 2022 to raise funds for the installation of a screening room in the historic Vondelpark building. More than 500 committed contributors donated a record €125,000 in total to the refurbishment and technical costs required to make the dreams of an IDFA Cinema a reality.

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