ISSN 2451-2966


Maciej Nowak

We, the New Theatre


Maciej Nowak’s article from 2004 summarizes the decade in progress at the time, as a time of great changes and challenges for Poles and Poland, where theatre somehow didn’t feel obliged to speak out on moral issues. The theatre had entirely lost its moral and social authority, built up over two centuries. At the same time, he proclaims the onset of a new theatre that does not consent to this, retaining a profound belief in itself as a medium that can be used to fix society and hold up its own image as an example. This new theatre is an agora. It is not afraid to confront the classics, but also has a great appetite for new stories, those which are close to its audience and actors. It searches for authors, for world-premiere texts and pretexts. Even at the risk of them being imperfect. In the new theatre, the actor becomes a co-creator of the play, equally responsible for its shape as the director, set designer and composer.


agora; acting; company; engaged theatre; dramaturgy

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Maciej Nowak

(1964), art historian, theatre scholar, theatre and restaurant critic. In 1988–1989 worked for Pamiętnik Teatralny journal, before founding and becoming editor of Goniec Teatralny (1990–1992) and Ruch Teatralny (1994–2005). Between 1997 and 2000 edited the culture section of newspaper Gazeta Wyborcza daily. From 2000 to 2006 head and artistic director of the Wybrzeże Theatre in Gdańsk, which at this time became one of the most talked-about Polish venues, the company for the debuts and successes of a number of young directors: Grażyna Kania, Agnieszka Olsten, Monika Pęcikiewicz, Paweł Demirski, Jan Klata, Wojciech Klemm and Michał Zadara. Founder and director (2003–2013) of the Zbigniew Raszewski Theatre Institute in Warsaw. Since September 2013 a juror on the TV series Top Chef Polska. Since 1 September 2015 the artistic director of the Polski Theatre in Poznań.