Franz Kafka

Profile

works of Aeschylus, Euripides and Hanna Krall, the twenty-strong company is one of the most progressive theatre ensembles in Poland. After a slightly nomadic start, the group has been permanently based at a renovated former garage in the Mokotów neighbourhood of Warsaw since 2016. Nowy Teatr is a thriving cultural centre, and alongside theatre productions it organises concerts, exhibitions, educational projects, workshops and lectures. It provides artists and curators with a free space, specially created by people with ideas. The ensemble’s main aim is to create a meaningful dialogue with the audience. To do this Nowy Teatr often turns to provocation and is not afraid of tackling uncomfortable subject matter. The company provides a space for imagination that is interdisciplinary and free from division and bias. Their mantra is: Come. Watch. Think.  Director Krystian Lupa (Jastrzębie Zdrój, 1943) is one of Poland’s most celebrated and influential theatre producers. He studied physics at the Jagiellonian University (Kraków) and graphic design at the Kraków Academy of Fine Arts. Lupa later studied directing at the National Film School in Łódź and the Ludwik Solski Academy for the Dramatic Arts. Lupa debuted in 1976 with Sławomir Mrożek’s Rzeznia (The Slaughterhouse). He learned about textual analysis and directorial technique through his work with the Polish theatre giant Konrad Swinarski and was heavily influenced by the work of theatre legend Tadeusz Kantor, whose happening-esque style gave new meaning to the role of actors. It is the work of the psychiatrist, psychoanalyst and philosopher Carl Jung however that has been the most crucial influence of all on Lupa’s development. He has called Jung a gnostic mystic, ‘a master of the path to the truth’. Over the course of his career Lupa has received prestigious honours such as the Ehrenzeichen für Wissenschaft und Kunst of Austria, France’s Ordre des Arts et des Lettres and the Italian Premio Europa per il Teatro, as well as awards from the Polish Ministry of Culture and the Polish Culture Foundation. As a director he has been linked to numerous theatres in Warsaw and has been a mentor to many influential Polish theatre producers, including Krzysztof Warlikowski and Grzegorz Jarzyna.