ITI was created on the initiative of the first UNESCO Director General, Sir Julian Huxley, and the playwright and novelist JB Priestly, in 1948, just after the Second World War. This was the beginning of the Cold War, when the Iron Curtain divided East and West. The aim of the founders of ITI was to build a cultural organization for the performing arts that was aligned with UNESCO’s goals on culture, education, the arts, mutual understanding and peace. It should focus its endeavours on improving the status of all members of the performing arts professions. They envisaged an organization that created platforms for international exchange and for engagement in the education of the performing arts, for beginners and professionals alike, as well as using the performing arts for mutual understanding and peace.

ITI has now developed into the world’s largest organization for the performing arts, with more than 90 Centres spread across every continent.

For more information about the International Theatre Institute ITI, please visit the website