Istanbul State Theatre head resigns over censored play

Celal Kadri Kınoğlu, the Istanbul head of Turkey’s State Theatre, has resigned after a play was removed from the theatre’s programme for February, opposition newspaper Cumhuriyet said.

The last minute change to the programme to remove “Europe”, a play by Scottish playwright David Grieg, was made by the newly-appointed head of State Theatre Mustafa Kurt after a playgoer complained that it included swearing, the newspaper said.

Kınoğlu opposed the change, Cumhuriyet said, and resigned in protest when his objections fell on deaf ears.

The Culture Ministry appointed Kurt, who had previously resigned as acting head of the State Theatre in 2014 for unknown reasons, to the position on Jan. 3.

The National Library of Scotland describes “Europe” as “set in autumn, near an unnamed border, near a railway station in a 'small decaying provincial town in Europe’.”

“The arrival of two foreigners, Sava and Katia, seeking shelter and safety at a deserted station where the trains no longer stop leads to very different responses from the locals. Adele the porter yearns to travel, while the unemployed workers feel threatened by the new arrivals,” it said.