HELLERAU – European Centre of the Arts, located in Dresden, near the borders to the Czech Republic, but also to Poland, sees itself as a hub between Western and Eastern Europe with the associated questions of identity and history in a regional and global context. HELLERAU is concerned to invite its neighbours* and to stimulate a dialogue beyond the rapid politics of the day through contemporary stage arts. On the occasion of Poland’s 100-year independence, a broad spectrum of selected artistic positions in contemporary Polish theatre will be presented with performances, music, films, installations, encounters and discussions.
Polish theatre has always been intensively involved in dealing with the consequences of centuries of foreign rule, the division of the country and the processing of the suffering of these experiences. In the sense of an identity-forming role against national oppression, the Polish theatre acted out various forms of resistance aesthetically. The National Theatre Movement, Polish Romanticism, but also the alternative (student) theatre movement in socialist times – all these were signs of an artistic resistance movement in theatre with an emphasis on a thoroughly missionary and enlightening character, but also with aesthetic inventions that possessed unique selling points worldwide. With the regaining of Poland’s independence after 1989, the renewal of Polish theatre also began on the peripheries, beyond the great cultural centres. The “Young Wild Ones” focused on the distinctive social change, the wild post-war capitalism and the more complex society. Increasingly, however, questions about a reappraisal of history in the context of the nation state that has moved to the right, about today’s understanding of democracy and about the role of Polish citizens and an active civil society are playing an important role.
Supported by the Federal Agency for Civic Education, the Adam Mickiewicz Institute and the Cultural Foundation of the Free State of Saxony. This measure is co-financed by tax revenues on the basis of the budget approved by the members of Saxony’s state parliament.
Polish Institute Berlin – Leipzig Branch in cooperation with HELLERAU – European Centre of the Arts and Thalia – Cinema, Coffee and Cigarettes