Provincial Actors: The Doppelgänger
Thursday, January 27, 2022, 6:00 PM
Stary National Theatre
ul. Jagiellońska 1
Stary National Theatre is one of the oldest theatres in Poland. Its contemporary repertoire...
The aim of the “Provincial Actors: The Doppelgänger” project is to unite two acting ensembles – the National Stary Theatre in Krakow and the Polski Underground Theatre in Wrocław.
Imagine that, as part of an art project, somewhere on the way between Krakow and Wrocław, a camera has been set up in the bushes in front of a gas station. The frame shows a fragment of the building with the pumps, a bit of the landscape, sometimes people appear. For two thousand hours the camera records reality. The recorded material undergoes artistic interpretation, the montage reveals an algorithm of similarities between people and situations. The aim of the “Provincial Actors: The Doppelgänger” project is to unite two acting ensembles – the National Stary Theatre in Krakow and the Polski Underground Theatre in Wrocław. Both theatres have recently been through a struggle to maintain artistic independence, to carry on working, using various strategies of resistance with varying consequences. The “Provincial Actors: The Doppelgänger” (the Krakow play) and “Provincial Actors: Autobiographies” (the Wrocław production) project is a utopian effort to bring together the two ensembles, not in one space, but in two different, though nearly identical plays, which dialogue with each other, copy each other, can be performed together or separately. “Short, remarkably comedic études with doppelgängers, including a caretaker in search of her ward (the always reliable Dorota Pomykała), or the teetotalling, unfulfilled cosmetician (an amusing Iwona Budner), mixed with monologues spoken on the actors’ own behalf. Bogdan Brzyski recalls his rough start in the acting business, and an ironic Marta Ojrzyńska complains about a demanding director, only to eventually slip into his role”, Dawid Dudko wrote about the Krakow performance (ONET KULTURA) adding, “At the same time, we observe recordings of rehearsals that stretch out because of the pandemic. Borczuch and his dramaturg Tomasz Śpiewak also evoke fragments of Stanisław Wyspiański’s “Liberation,” with a Konrad who “adorned the national stage.” This drama, along with inquiries into the general state of the artist, links the performance with Agnieszka Holland’s legendary film of the same title”.
- Iwona Budner
- Urszula Kiebzak
- Monika Niemczyk (a guest actress)
- Marta Ojrzyńska
- Dorota Pomykała
- Małgorzata Zawadzka
- Bogdan Brzyski
- Maciej Charyton
- Roman Gancarczyk
- Zygmunt Józefczak
- Krzysztof Zawadzki
- Michał Borczuch Director
- Tomasz Śpiewak Dramaturgy / text
- Dorota Nawrot Scenography / costumes
- Jacqueline Sobiszewski Lighting director
- Bartosz Dziadosz Music
- Wojtek Sobolewski Video
- Maja Wisła Szopińska Assistant director
- Wojciech Rodak Assistant director / video
Stary National Theatre
ul. Jagiellońska 1
Stary National Theatre is one of the oldest theatres in Poland. Its contemporary repertoire consists of both contemporary works and reinterpretations of classics.
The theatre, which found its home in a historical building on a corner of Szczepański Square, is one of Poland’s national stages, directly managed by the Minister of Culture. In the 19th century, its stage was graced by the theatre’s current patron, a consummate actress, Helena Modrzejewska, known to the English-speaking world as Modjeska. A great many eminent artists trod the legendary boards of the Stary after the war, notably Tadeusz Kantor, Jerzy Grotowski, Zygmunt Hübner, and Krystian Lupa. The stagings of Adam Mickiewicz’s The Forefathers’ Eve directed by Konrad Swinarski and of Fyodor Dostoyevsky’s The Possessed directed by Andrzej Wajda made history. The contemporary repertoire of the theatre consists both of current works and reinterpretations of classics.
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