| On This Site | On the Web | Workshops | Companies | Films/Videos | Bibliography |
|Editor: (Owen Daly) This page consists of links to the Grotowski material on this site as well as other reference material on Grotowski that you might find interesting or useful. I welcome comments or suggestions for additional inclusions on this list.|
|Towards a Poor Theatre||The first 11 pages of the book "Towards a Poor Theatre", is an article written by Grotowski in 1965, when Grotowski was becoming widely recognized in Europe, he wrote down what he was about.|
|Jeffrey Spolan's Thoughts On Jerzy Grotowski||If you find Grotowski's writing above a little difficult on first read, a more approachable starting point is this email reply written by an actor, a founding member of Pillory Theatre, as he reflects on his experiences with Grotowski's work and its relevance to today.|
|Grotowski in N.Y.C. 1968||A review of a performance of Grotowski's "The Constant Prince" in NYC in October of 1968.|
|Grotowski in N.Y.C. 1969||A review of a performances of Grotowski's Polish Laboratory Theatre in NYC in November of 1969. This review references another review published a month earlier.|
|Pillory Theater Source Material||A collection of material from Pillory Theater, an American group using Grotowski's techniques.|
|Grotowski's Statement of Principles||Grotowski's ten Principles for Prospective Actors in his theater, extracted from "Towards a Poor Theatre".|
|Joseph Slowik's Lecture based on his work with Grotowski in Wroclaw in 1969||This is Joseph Slowik's lecture on his experience working with Grotowski. Slowik taught acting and directing at the Goodman School of Drama and The Theatre School at DePaul University from 1951 until 2007. He studied with Jerzy Grotowski at the Polish Laboratory Theater in Wroclaw in 1969, returning to the United States to spread Grotowski's techniques through numerous seminars and workshops.
Thanks to Jane Drake Brody, actress, director, acting coach and casting director who provided these materials.
|Joseph Slowik's Notes 1969 Rehearsals and Performances||
During his work at the Polish Lab Theatre Joseph Slowik took extensive notes. Here are 23 pages of these notes:
|An American Director's Papers from his study at Grotowski's Lab Theatre||More notes from American actor, director and professor, Joseph Slowik, who traveled to Wroclaw, Poland to study at Grotowski's Polish Lab Theatre from January to May, 1969. He made detailed notes about his inpressions and experiences These are PDF images of the original notes typed in Wroclaw in 1969. Also included is a rich description of his travel to East Berlin, notes on The Berlin Ensemble, Grotowski's workshop at NYU that year and the The Lab Theatre's performances at Edinbough, Scotland that summer. These papers give a rich portrait of a world, of the times when Grotowski was at the height of his profession.|
|Grotowski's Total Act, Via Negativa, and Conjunctio Oppositorum||A well researched and insightfully written paper by Jennifer Levy from 2005 titled "Theoretical Foundations of Grotowski's Total Act, Via Negativa, and Conjunctio Oppositorum. It places his work and these key ideas in context of his contemporary and preceding theatrical ideas and practice." From the Journal of Religion and Theatre, Vol. 4, No. 2, Fall 2005.|
|Memorial Service, NYC, March, 1999||NY Times' Margaret Croyden's reporting on the service. A tape of Grotowski's voice summarizing his career is played as well as remarks from Harvey Lichtenstein, Margaret Croyden, Judith Malina, Bill Reichblum, and Andre Gregory.|
|A Chronology of Grotowski's Life||The Polish Cultural Center in New York City has put together this succinct Chronology of Grotowski's life and work'
A Grotowski Chronology
|Paul Maunder saw Grotowski's
Apocalypsis in Sydney in 1969. In 1975 he presented a work he directed at
the Festival of the Open Theatre in Wroclaw Poland. This tribute contains
a succinct overview of Grotowski's life.
Contact firstname.lastname@example.org 64 3 732 4010 PO Box 2 Blackball Greymouth New Zealand 7804
|Grotowski and Vakhtangov||A question about the influence of Russian director Vakhtangov on Grotowski yields a discussion of theatrical and other influences in Grotowski's education and experience.|
|The lasting effects of this training||An email interview with Jeffrey Spolan and an English Graduate Student in January, 2000|
|Kalidasa's Shakuntala||From "The Theatre Of Grotowski" by Jennifer Kumiega, This describes the December 1960 production at the Theatre of Thirteen Rows in Opole where Grotowski started his professional directing career in September 1959.|
|The Physical Training - Q&A||An email discussion of the place of the physical training in Grotowski's work.|
|Grotowski's Influence on American Actor Training||Stephen Wangh presents and discusses the interworkings of Grotowski's work with actors including the physical exercises, "les exercices plastiques et corporels", "Via Negativa", doubt as a creative force and the danger of cynicism. Wangh addresses some misconceptions, and shows how the actors training and effectiveness is keyed to the "belief that human beings come into this world physically and emotionally multi-potent, unrestricted, and open..." Find more on Stephen Wangh below.|
|Jan Kott's recollections of Grotowski, Opole to Apocalypsis||Jan Kott, born in Warsaw in 1914, was the Polish critic and theoretician of the theatre best known around the world. In this excerpt from his final formal interview he shares his recollections and opinions about Grotowski.|
|Grotowski's First lecture to the College de France, 1997||In this lecture, towards the end of his career, Grotowski summarizes his work and his views on theatre and performance. Reported by Allen Kuharski, previously published in the journals Periphery and Slavic and East European Performance.|
|Ascetic and Smuggler||Allen Kuharski's article written shortly after Grotowski's death, published in the Yale University magazine "Theater". (.rtf format)|
|Antonin Artaud and Grotowski||A comparison of their techniques in the use of symbolism and ritual and 'holy' theatre.|
|Grotowski's links to Artaud||They are linked by two people, Artaud's director and one of his predecessor. (Thanks to Richard Gaffield-Knight.)|
|This is an excerpt from Peter Brook's book, The Empty Space published in 1968. He specific discusses Grotowski's work and concept of 'holy' in regards to actors. Brook gives a good description of the differences between the different manifestations of 'holy' in theatre. He refers to, among others, Merce Cunningham, Antoine Artaud, Meyerhold, Samuel Beckett, 'Happenings', Living Theatre led by Julian Beck and Judith Malina, Haitian voodoo. Be sure to read the last paragraph.|
|Grotowski and Yoga||A look into Grotowski's motivation in his life's work by exploring his knowledge of Yoga and the parallels between Yoga and his techniques as a director.|
|Grotowski's Theatrical Roots||A note from Robert Ellermann that presents some of the roots of Grotowski's Lab theatre emanating from the Moscow Arts Theatre, and their grounding in Eastern philosophy.|
|What is Theatre For?||Some thoughts and references about how Grotowski would answer this question.|
|Poor Theatre and Dogma 95||An email from a drama student noticing similarities.|
|The Legacy of Jerzy Grotowski||A summary of Grotowski's life and work by a student, Ngigi Muya, at Kenyatte Universith|
|Classical Antiquity on Communist Stage in Poland||A Book by Elzbieta Olechowska about classical theatre in Poland in the communist era. Jerzy Grotowski's Akropolis is one of the many productions discussed. Grotowski is referenced on pages 48, 52, 60, 61, 65, 72, 168, 327, 354, 355, 356, 357, 359, 360|
On the Web:
|Theoretical Foundations of Grotowski's Total Act, Via Negativa, and Conjunctio Oppositorum||Jennifer Lavy's article in The Journal of Religion and Theatre which gives an in depth review of these key concepts.|
|Guide to Jerzy Grotowski Technique (Backstage)||An article in Backstage magazine giving an overview of Grotowski teachings,|
|Statement by Grotowski||Untitled Text by Grotowski dated July 4, 1998 published in TDR 43:2 T162 · Summer 1999. Grotowski clarifies the work at Pontedera and what he hopes to pass on to those who come after. (.pdf file)|
|Reminiscence from the Bay Area||Robert S. Currier worked with Grotowski in 1983-1984 in California.|
|Grotowski: Igniting the Flame||An excellent paper by Richard Gaffield-Knight on Grotowski's early career, from student to director of the Laboratory Theatre.|
|Jerzy Grotowski, 1933-1999||Richard Schechner's thoughts on Grotowski's 'passing from activity into history' , TDR 43:2 T162 (.pdf file )|
|After The Guru||BY STEPHEN NUNNS writes "Young Artists Confront Grotowski's Legacy" in the Village Voice|
|Jerzy Grotowski and Antonin Artaud: Between Heaven and Hell||A paper by Rick Segreda comparing Grotowski and Artaud (on Tripod.com with ads)|
|Culture.PL||A website featuring Polish culture. This link is to a very good overview of Grotowski's life and work.|
Grotowski Today: Workshops/Programs
The Workcenter in Pontedera, Italy is the place where Grotowski conducted his work during the last 13 years of his life. During this time he transmitted his work to Thomas Richards who, along with Mario Biagini and others continue his work here.
Stephen Wangh is leading a Summer workshop in New York City July - August. The Workshop is titled 'Acrobatics of the Heart' and is described as 'Grotowski-based and Viewpoints-grounded training'. Other teachers include Wendell Beavers and Erica Fae. For information contact via this page.
of Studies on Jerzy Grotowski’s Work and of The Cultural and Theatrical
Research is located in Grotowski's Laboratory Theatre in Wroclaw, Poland
. Dzieci (djyeh-chee) is an international experimental theatre ensemble dedicated to a search for the "sacred" through the medium of theatre. Dzieci uses techniques garnered from such theatre masters as Jerzy Grotowski, Eugenio Barba and Peter Brook, ritual forms derived from Native American and Eastern spiritual disciplines, and an ethic based securely in Humanistic Psychology.Web Site Introduction. Workshops Intro Video Facebook A PASSION 2023 & TRIBUTE TO GROTOWSKI
Synaesthetic Theatre, based in Brooklyn, has been creating work since 1997, collaborating in various incarnations. The company and its productions benefit from an extended family of unique and multi-talented actors, musicians, designers, filmmakers and artists. They have hosted trainings led by Stephen Wangh, author of Acrobat of the Heart, who participated in workshops with Grotowski in 1967.
|International Center for Theatrical Research and Training - Housed in a restored farmhouse in Labarrère, France, Las Teouleres hosts programs in the theatrical arts.There will be five work sessions in the Summer 2015 hosted by longtime collaborators and colleges of the polish director and innovator Jerzy Grotowski.|
The British Grotowski Conference
June 11 - 14, 2009 at the University of Kent. This was probably the largest gathering of people who worked directly with Grotowski during his period as Director of theatrical works since the world renowned Laboratory Theatre disbanded in the early 1970s. And there will be many more people and groups that have been influenced by Grotowski's work in attendance. This is a major event by the three year British Grotowski project at the University of Kent. See the conference schedule for "Grotowski: Theatre and Beyond" Also see the links to the British Grotowski project below. Also: Symposium 14-15 June 2009
Stephen Wangh worked with Grotowski in 1967 and has had a long teaching career at Emerson College in Boston and more recently at New York University. He has taught acting as a Visiting Professor at Naropa University in Boulder. He is presenting a three day workshop titled The Heart of Teaching," on the inner dynamics of teaching
|Tracing Grotowski's Path: Year of Grotowski in New York||
UNESCO's designated of 2009 as the "Year of Grotowski". This has provoked the planning of many events worldwide to celebrate the work of one of the most influential theatre directors of the 20th century. The Polish Cultural Institute in New York in partnership with the Performance Studies Department at NYU is pleased to present: Tracing Grotowski's Path: Year of Grotowski in New York. This exciting series of events, curated by Richard Schechner, will span over six months, encompass numerous New York City venues and comprise of film screenings, panel discussions, a photo exhibition, work demonstrations, workshops and more.
|grotowski.net||Mieczyslaw Janowski and Andrzej Paluchiewicz are members of Grotowski's original Laboratory Theatre. They are in Poland. This was their web site. (In the 'Documentation' section, there are two short videos from 'Akropolis' and 'Constant Prince') Videos (Flash)|
Grotowski Today: Companies and People
|Nordisk TeatrerLaboratorium/Odin Teatret was founded in Oslo in 1964 by Eugenio Barba and has been based in Holstebro since 1966. Barba worked with Grotowski as a graduate student from 1961 to 1963 maintained a close relationship with him throughout Grotowski's lifetime. Barba's book, Land of Ashes and Diamonds, is a first person account of Grotowski's work and thoughts in the 1960's. Odin Teatret holds performances, workshops and seminars.|
Theatre troupe located in Buenos Aires based at TeatroIN in Villa Martelli The group is the subject of a documentary "Cantame'' by Trevor Meier which has been submitted to the 2020 Santa Fe Film Festival. Alejandro Tomás Rodriguez was a significant member at that time and was leading many of the workshops seen in the documentary along with Catalina del Barrio, with the main members Huilen Fente and Nicolas Grigioni.
|Department of Theatre and Dance at the University of New Mexico||This program is home to two Grotowski practicioners and scholars. Dominika Laster, Head of Theatre and Associate Professor,and author of Grotowski’s Bridge Made of Memory.-see below. Alejandro Tomás Rodriguez, Assistant Professor of Acting and Directing,worked at he Workcenter of Jerzy Grotowski and Thomas Richards (Pontedera, Italy) from 2007 - 2015.|
|Antero Alli is a director in Berkeley California that is doing work that appears to be in the same vein as the Workcenter in Pontedera. They are unrelated, but the threads in Antero Alli's background include Grotowski's influence and interaction with people who have studied with Grotowski. Contact: email@example.com|
Dzieci (djyeh-chee) is an international experimental theatre ensemble dedicated to a search for the "sacred" through the medium of theatre. Dzieci uses techniques garnered from such theatre masters as Jerzy Grotowski, Eugenio Barba and Peter Brook, ritual forms derived from Native American and Eastern spiritual disciplines, and an ethic based securely in Humanistic Psychology. Based in NYC.. Interview in Theatre Magazine A Human Sacrifice - Purification and the Art of Theatre Group Dzieci See Entry in Grotowski Today above.
|Jim Slowiak and Jairo Cuesta are the artistic directors of the New World Performance Laboratory based in Akron, Ohio.. Their former student and now drama teacher in Baton Rouge, Louisiana, Mike Jim Van Lieu gives this background, "Jim began working with Grotowski on the Objective Drama Project at Irvine then moved to Pontedera as a work leader. I think Jairo began working with Grotowski on his Theatre of Sources period in the 70's. They travel the world doing performances and workshops."|
|Urban Research Theater||The Urban Research Theater was an ongoing project of expeditions and work sessions in New York City.. In 2013 Ben Spatz moved to England for an academic position Email Ben Spatz|
|Paul Maunder||Paul has explored
Grotowski's methodology through group work for three decades. He now lives
in the country, works with senior students at the college level, and
is happy to have correspondence with students, or to hold workshops with
people who wish to explore this theatre space.
Email 64 3 732 4010 PO Box 2 Blackball Greymouth New Zealand 7804
|Ang Gey Pin||Ang Gey Pin has worked at the Workcenter of Jerzy Grotowski and Thomas Richards, Italy, since 1998. She mainly concentrated her creative impulse in one branch of research at the Workcenter, Project the Bridge, developing theatre arts. She has been a key member of this branch of research at the Workcenter, being the main actress in One Breath Left (1998–2002) and Dies Irae (2003– 2006). Prior to this, she participated for one year in Workcenter of Jerzy Grotowski and Thomas Richards’ main line of research, Art as Vehicle, in 1994. EMail At British Grotowski Project October 1,2, 2007|
performer at The University of Texas at Dallas, Richardson, Texas
Website: https://www.utdallas.edu/ah/people/faculty_detail.php?faculty_id=191 Email
|In Iran in 2001||Email and pictures from Black Narcissus, an Iranian experimental theatre group|
|Iran in 2007 - TANTALOS||
Email and pictures fromTANTALOS, an Iranian experimental theatre group which rehearsed for a year before giving one performance of their performance of MEDEA in the desert. They are working on a new production. Statement by Ahmadreaza Nouri, Essay on the similarities between Rumi and Grotowski here. Director of “TANTALOS” Experimental Theater Group Email: firstname.lastname@example.org
|C.I.R.T||Centro Indipendente Ricerca Teatrale
Sede: Via Ricotti 11 C.A.P.: 20158 Milano Italia (E)
Tel: 0039-0(2)-39324409 SMS: 338 - 1473590
Email: email@example.com Photos
de Recherche et de Formations Théâtrale STAGES
|Fool's Fury||Based in San Francisco, Fools Fury recently performed at PS122 in NYC. Established in 1998, foolsFURY creates immediate physical works of theater that take full advantage of all the elements of live performance. We believe theater, like all great art, should hold beauty and induce wonder. A member of the company, Stephen Jacob, trained with Jerzy Grotowski in the Objective Theater Project at the University of California, Irvine. 415.626.0453 (ext. 107) Email: Ben Yalom, Artistic Director at firstname.lastname@example.org|
American Russian Theatre Ensemble Laboratory, Los Angeles ARTEL
is a theater laboratory collective that creates and performs original work
through investigation of cultures and histories.
Agora Teatral is an Association founded in 2002 by the colombian actress and director Yamile Lanchas, that supports and promotes theatre research.
Agora Teatral has a group online with more than 260 members, among them several theatre investigation centers.
People interested in the work of Jerzy Grotowski, E. Barba Odin Teatret, Thomas Richards, Peter Brook, J.Cuesta and Jim Slowiak, Maud Robart, Yoshi Oida, Suzuki (and others). e-mail Yamile Lanchas: email@example.com
|Towards a Poor Theatre, Jerzy Grotowski, Simon and Schuster, New York, 1968 Click here for Excerpt This is the first of the publications of Grotowski's thoughts and theories published internationally. It contains nine articles or talks written by Grotowski or interviews with him. In addition, it contains articles by Ludwik Flaszen and Eugenio Barba who collaborated with Grotowski. It also contains detailed and illustrated accounts of the physical training techniques used by Grotowski's actors from 1959-62 and in 1966.|
|At Work with Grotowski on Physical Actions, Thomas Richards, Routledge, London,1995|
of Ashes and Diamonds My Apprenticeship in Poland and 26 Letters from
Jerzy Grotowski to Eugenio Barba, Eugenio Barba, Black Mountain
Press, 1999 London
|The Theatre of Grotowski, Jennifer Kumiega, Methuen, 1985. A detailed chronicle of Grotowski's career from 1959 in Opole through about 1980 organized in three sections, 'History', 'Theory', and 'Post-Theatre'. I especially like the detailed accounts of Grotowski's productions. In the appendix the author presents a detailed description of a performance of 'Apocalypsis Cum Figuris', the last production of a theatrical performance directed by Grotowski. There are many photographs of people, productions and posters.|
|Grotowski and His Laboratory, Zbigniew Osinski, PAJ Publications, 1986, translated and abridged by Lillian Vallee and Robert Findlay. The original material covers the period from Grotowski's youth (born:1933) through 1976, the eighteenth year of the Laboratory Theatre's existence. Excellent information about Grotowski's early life and influences. It presents a chronological account of detailed information about each of the productions. Many pictures, production drawings, posters. Includes many contemporary comments or Grotowski's work.|
With Grotowski: Theatre is Just a Form, Peter Brook, Edited by: Georges Banu and Grzegorz Ziolkowski with Paul Allain, January 2009 From early on, Grotowski recognised the double nature of forms. They conceal, but they also protect the life that is within. For this reason, he set up his own barriers, so as to conceal and protect the work he was doing with his dedicated companions in their well-guarded private space. When he eliminated spectators from his theatre, and when he refused to allow writers to describe and evaluate his explorations, this was to prevent mere descriptions from replacing the vivid life of actions. And yet Grotowski, a great reader, an encyclopedic man of learning, knew well how essential in human life it is for understanding to be passed on, for there to be a chain of transmission. His quest was not only in a personal need to force the crust of the earth to open so as to reveal the blazing core hidden in its depths. It was also, in his own chosen field of theatre, to guide others, to help them discover in exact, detailed and repeatable ways what laws, what practices make this deep inner penetration possible. In this way, he could develop a craft that could be transmitted directly, from person to person, a craft that examined the relationship between impulse and action, and made their coming together possible. He carefully separated himself from his explorations, so that they could continue one day without him’. (an extract from the book)
|Grotowski’s Bridge Made of Memory: Embodied Memory, Witnessing and Transmission in the Grotowski Work, Dominika Laster, This comprehensive study traces key thematic threads across Grotowski’s research, examining lesser-known aspects of his work such as performance compositions structured around African and Afro-Caribbean traditional songs and ritual movement as well as textual material from the Christian Gnostic tradition. As an active process of research and questioning conducted through the “body-being” of the performer, Grotowski’s work represents a practical realization of the often highly theoretical and abstract discussions of one of the field’s main preoccupations: embodied practice as a way of knowings.|
|An Acrobat of the Heart : A Physical Approach to Acting, Stephen Wangh, Andre Gregory(Afterword), Vintage, 2000 This is an excellent and very useable approach to physical theatre strongly influenced by Grotowski, organized and presented by a teacher working wih the material for over 30 years.|
|The Grotowski Sourcebook, Richard Schechner(Editor), Lisa Wolford(Editor), Routledge, 1997 (Paperback 2001) This is a collection of articles by Grotowski and his associates, critics, and many others involved in theatre and interested in Grotowski's work from 1957 to 1997. It is divided into four sections, 'Theatre of Productions', 'Paratheatre and Theatre of Sources', 'Objective Drama', and 'Art as a Vehicle' which represent the different stages of Grotowski's career and work.|
an Archeology of the Soul, Antero Alli & Friends, Vertical Pool,
"Workbook" by a current director influenced by Grotowski. Introduction (.pdf format)
|Zygmunt Molik's Voice and Body Work The Legacy of Jerzy Grotowski By Giuliano Campo Zygmunt Molik Published 2010 by Routledge – 208 pages. One of the original members of Jerzy Grotowski’s acting company, Zygmunt Molik’s Voice and Body Work explores the unique development of voice and body exercises throughout his career in actor training.|
Film / Video
|"With Jerzy Grotowski",
"With Jerzy Grotowski", Nienadówka, 1980 - Jerzy Grotowski, a leading figure in the avant-garde theatre, invited a film crew to travel with him to the small village of Nienadowka, Poland in 1980. It was there that he, his mother, and his brother were hidden by a peasant family during the Nazi occupation. Returning for the first time, Grotowski hopes to rediscover the people, places, images, and sounds of his intensely lived childhood--memories that are indelibly linked to his art. Afterwards, in his aunt's apartment in the city of Rzeszow, he speaks directly to the camera about the foundations of his work. Narrated by Peter Brook. Directed by Jill Godmilow http://www.facets.org/
a production by Jerzy Grotowski for the Polish Laboratory Theatre, takes
the concentration camp at Auschwitz for its setting, and, for its plot,
the building by the prisoners of the gas chamber in which they will be consumed.
This work is of a transcendent pity and terror and is the only work of art
I know that is in some measure aesthetically commensurate with the Nazi
history it springs from. Akropolis stands alone, a strange, classical moment
of genius, lyrical, painful, of a sublime seriousness, rooted in our forgotten
life, in the tatters of the Hellenistic and Biblical culture that trembled
there before the darkness of extermination. This appears to be currently
out of print, but still available in many university libraries. |
-Elizabeth Hardwick, New York Review of Books
|"Jerzy Grotowski"|| |
director of the Polish Lab Theater talks with theater critic Margaret Croyden
(translated by Jacques Chwat, theater director). Grotowski discusses the relationship
between director and actor, a playwright's function, and the idea of his "poor"
theater that renounces everything not essential to the work. 1970, 55 mins.
These of the have been available from Facets Multimedia in Chicago. Akropolis seems to be out of print-check university libraries..
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last updated: December 26, 2019