Krystian Lupa, photo Katarzyna Pałetko

Krystian Lupa



‘An artistic dinner’ of old friends who once were a part of an informal bohemian group turns into a wake after the death of one of the characters. The participants are not focused on the deceased, though, they allow themselves to take ‘liberty’ to verbalise hidden and unconscious fears, claims, injuries and demands. The bohemia of the olden days turns rebel energy into state contracts, good paychecks, decorations and positions. The production shall be a radical journey deep into the modern world, under the surface of social forms and cultural conventions, in search of what only starts to appear on the line of horizon. The production that touches on the problem of freedom, which is illusory in our life, and constraint, which is the natural condition of a human being. It also includes questions concerning artists and their role in the modern world.

  • Polski Theatre, Wrocław
  • Adaptation, set and lighting design, director – Krystian Lupa
  • Text – Thomas Bernhard based on the translation by Monika Muskała
  • Costumes – Piotr Skiba
  • Music arrangement – Bogumił Misala
  • Video – Karol Rakowski, Łukasz Twarkowski
  • Performers – Piotr Skiba, Halina Rasiakówna, Wojciech Ziemiański, Marta Zięba, Jan Frycz (guest appearance; National Theatre, Warsaw), Ewa Skibińska, Bożena Baranowska, Andrzej Szeremeta, Adam Szczyszczaj, Michał Opaliński, Marcin Pempuś, Anna Ilczuk, Krzesisława Dubielówna
  • Improvisation on Henry Purcell’s Cold Song theme in Sebastiansplatz – Mieczysław Mejza
  • Director’s assistants – Oskar Sadowski, Sebastian Krysiak (PWST National Academy of Theatre Arts), Amadeusz Nosal (PWST National Academy of Theatre Arts)
  • Co-ordination – Magdalena Płyszewska
  • Licensed from – Authors’ and Composers’ Society ZAiKS (Warsaw) and Suhrkamp Verlag
  • Premiere – 23 October 2014
  • Apocrypha by Krystian Lupa, actors’ improvisations; quotations from Jeannie Ebner’s work and Friederike Mayröcker’s work; thoughts of Joana in Sebastiansplatz (Graz) by Verena Lercher
  • The production was funded by the Municipality of Wrocław.

    What is the best moment in a critic’s life? When he knows that he participates in an event that is much more than just a seasonal theatre attraction. Watching Woodcutters directed by Krystian Lupa in Polski Theatre in Wrocław I had a feeling of total fulfilment. It is the event of the year, maybe – of the decade. [...]

    In the production of Woodcutters, everything fascinates: starting from an intellectual precision and a masterly stage adaptation of Bernhard’s novel translated by reliable Monika Muskała, through an acting team, which is hardly seen in the Polish theatre, next to a fairytale-like set design and a music scope that is complementary to the subject of the drama.

    Łukasz Maciejewski, Wprost


Date and hour

10 November


Running time

4 hours 40 minutes (with one intermission)