ISSN 2451-2966


Monika Kwaśniewska

The Actor in the Deadlock of Contemporary Folwark Relations


The author analyses the situation of actors in contemporary Polish theatre. Drawing from statements of artists, theatre researchers and critics, she claims that it is governed by folwark relationships (the theoretical foundation is taken from Andrzej Leder writings). The power is accumulated in the hands of theatre director (within the institution) and production director (in the creative dimension), while actors are reduced to performers. She reflects upon the possibility of breaking this system through analysis of interrelated projects: Nie-Boska komedia. Szczątki  [The Un-Divine Comedy: Remains], a production cancelled before its premiere at the National Stary Theatre in 2013 by Jan Klata, then the Stary Theatre's director, Nie-boska. Wyznanie [The Un-Divine: Confession], a performance created in Kraków in 2015 within the POP-UP alternative curatorial project, and nie-boska komedia. WSZYSTKO POWIEM BOGU! [The Un-Divine Comedy: I’M GONNA TELL GOD EVERYTHING!], which premiered in 2014 at the Stary Theatre. In the second part, the author analyses the course and meaning of the protests organized by the actors from the Polski Theatre in Wrocław against appointing Cezary Morawski as the director of this institution. Based on these analysis, she claims that alternative models of organizing theatre production are not the solution for objectification of actors, because these models usually copy institutional patterns. The change should come from the fundamental and common modification of thinking about actors as artists, co-creators of artistic and public discourses. Actors themselves should demand this change. 


actor/actress; competition, folwark relations; institutional theatre, hierarchy, production director; protest; theatre director

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Monika Kwaśniewska

editor of the journal Didaskalia, assistant professor in the Chair of Theatre and Drama, Jagiellonian University in Kraków, and graduate of the postgraduate programme in gender studies of the Institute of the Audio-Visual Arts. Author of Od wstrętu do sublimacji. Teatr Krzysztofa Warlikowskiego w świetle teorii Julii Kristevej [From Disgust to Sublimation: the Theatre of Krzysztof Warlikowski in the Light of Julia Kristeva’s Theory] (2009) and Pytanie o wspólnotę. Jerzy Grzegorzewski i Jan Klata [A Question about the Community: Jerzy Grzegorzewski and Jan Klata] (2016).