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Marcin Liber


Dominik Więcek


Martyna Wawrzyniak

set design, costumes and lighting design

Mirek Kaczmarek


Filip Kaniecki

stage manager

Iza Stolarska


Jacek Beler, Michał Czachor, Anna Ilczuk, Michał Jarmicki, Andrzej Kłak, Filip Kaniecki (guest appearance)

Oh, Haven’t They Lived in Dignity

Teatr Powszechny in Warsaw

„Oh, Haven’t They Lived in Dignity” is a journey through the history of Teatr Ósmego Dnia (Theatre of the Eighth Day), a legend of the Poznań alternative theatre life. The group has become emblematic of countercultural theatre, taking a very definite ideological position and defying years of repression by actively subverting the socio-political system of the People’s Republic of Poland.

Ewa Wójciak, the group’s leader, would say that an artist should not use the theatre to deal with personal issues. Marcin Liber – the show’s director and a child of the Teatr Ósmego Dnia – seeks to probe and subvert the limits of such ground rules. Via a reconstruction of Teatr Ósmego Dnia’s manifests, methods of work with the body and the more important among their shows, the performance poses the question of the sense and identity of political theatre, with its off roots and its institutional present. Is the countercultural project of creating small communities a viable survival strategy in the face of radical social polarisation?

The title draws on the legendary „Oh, Haven’t We Lived in Dignity” by Teatr Ósmego Dnia, premiered in 1979 in Poznań. The ensemble work directed by Lech Raczak included Ewa Wójciak, Marcin Kęszycki, Tadeusz Janiszewski and Adam Borowski among others. Years later, Professor Juliusz Tyszka would write about it thus:
„It remains in the memory of three generations of Polish intelligentsia as a manifestation of spiritual freedom in the times of oppression and as a distinguished theatrical oeuvre that blazed one of the most important trails in the global development of experimental theatre (inspired by Grotowski’s Teatr Laboratorium) and of political theatre born out of the youth revolt in the West in the 1960s.”.

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