WORLD PREMIERE of ŁF4K and Nowy Theatre in Łódź
A PEOPLE'S HISTORY OF POLAND
17 and 18 September, 19:15
Nowy Theatre, Mała Scena, Zachodnia 93
The history of Poland as we know it is not a history of everyone. The history of Poland as we know it is the history of elites, whereas everyone deserves their rightful place in the record of the past, just as everyone deserves their place in the future yet to come. In A People’s History of Poland, Adam Leszczyński is pondering about the methodology of historiography from the reverse point of view, namely from the perspective of the excluded. How can Poland’s history, as a history of exploitation, be discussed from the stage in the voice of the youth?
Following the writer’s idea, the authors of the play suggest a critical look at the history of the Republic of Poland as the history of a great manor, built on the oppression and exploitation for the one-sided benefit of the most privileged: from the slave trade in the state ruled by Mieszko I to the ruthless political transformation of 1989. What we think about the history of the land we happen to inhabit requires a radical, critical review: we cannot design the future without first facing the past – painful and full of contradictions.
The perspective presented in A People’s History of Poland is treated as the history of unfinished emancipation; a look into the past which allows us to notice the outline of the currently forming revolution. We are at a breakthrough moment: it is the first time since 1990 that so many young people have declared themselves on the left side of the political spectrum. As a historian, Leszczyński makes a major move; the next one is up to the artists. They, in turn, do more than just present a historical view – otherwise, it would be enough to read the book. Adam Leszczyński focuses on a wide, historical analysis. However, he doesn’t offer political or systemic solutions that could be used today. He is not sure whether the theatre has the tools to help design such solutions. But it certainly does have the tools to share a dream of a better tomorrow, the fantasy of a fair world – the dream of equality. That was, is and always will be the role of live, committed theatre: to give people hope that the dream will eventually come true.
Today, we need to think about creating alliances and a common front in the fight for real social change. Paraphrasing the words of Andrzej Leder, we cannot oversleep the next revolution. A People’s History of Poland can be an impulse for such a conversation. And, as Bernard Marie-Koltes said, there can be no conversation about art without a conversation about exclusion.
The performance is co-produced by the Łódź of Four Cultures Festival and the Nowy Theatre in Łódź, in cooperation with the Stanisław Wyspiański Academy of Theatre Arts in Krakow.
Tickets: click here
Author: Adam Leszczyński
Directed / Music- Piotr Pacześniak AST KRAKÓW
Dramaturge/ Text – Wera Makowskx AST KRAKÓW
Video - Jagna Nawrocka ASP ŁÓDŹ
Stage design and costumes - Anna Rogóż
Hanna Molenda - Jaźwińska