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A main venue of the 60th (2006) Avignon Theatre Festival staged at the Popes' Palace, featuring Asobu, a play by the festival artistic associate Josef Nadj (fifth from the left).

The Festival d'Avignon, or Avignon Festival, is an annual arts festival held in French city of Avignon. Founded in 1947 by Jean Vilar, it is the oldest extant festival in France and one of the world's greatest. The festival consists of two parts, "In" and "Off".

In 2008, some 950 shows were performed during three weeks.

The "In" Festival

The "In" festival is organised by a non-profit organisation (since 1980), which is administered by a board of trustees composed of: the French state, the city of Avignon, the Département du Vaucluse (county), the Région Provence-Alpes-Côte d'Azur (super-county), and seven public figures competent in the field of theatre. Amongst other places, the "In" Festival is performed in the "Cour d'Honneur" - the honours courtyard - of the Palais des Papes, the place of residence of the Avignon papacy during most of the 14th century.

The "Off" Festival

The "Off" festival is also organised by a non-profit organisation composed mostly of theatre companies and is performed in theatres schools, streets and all places suitable for performing.

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