2019 in Powszechny Theatre – 10 previews, 409 shows, thousands of spectators

While recapitulating last year, we thank you – our spectators for your presence during our shows. Once again we have proved together that there are no records that cannot be broken. - We respect our audience very much. Due to honest exchange of ideas we have built an important alliance. It gives us power and faith that where there’s a will, there’s a way – says Ewa Pilawska, the Powszechny Theatre director.


6 first previews and 4 previews – artistic risk always pays off    

In 2019 we produced 4 previews and 6 first previews (first shows in Poland). Production of plays that have not been shown in other theatres before is always an artistic risk. That is why we are happy with your positive opinions as well with distinctions and awards.

Here are the first previews:

  • „Come back” by Przemysław Pilarski, directed by Anna Augustynowicz (co-produced with Współczesny Theatre in Szczecin)
  • „Ferragosto” – the play about Gustaw Herling-Grudziński, by Radosław Paczocha, directed by Adam Orzechowski
  • „Touching the Void” by David Greig, directed by Ewa Pilawska (Polish preview took place before first shows on London’s West End)
  • „Stag And Doe” by Mark Crawford, directed by Jakub Przebindowski
  • „The Independent. The City” directed by Małgorzata Goździk and Arkadiusz Wójcik
  • „The Spitting Image of My Son-In-Law” directed by Paweł Szkotak (the text by Krzysztof Kędziora was awarded in “Comedywriting” competition).

We also produced 4 previews in the Reading theatre for people with poor eyesight and blind project:

  • “The Lie” by Florian Zeller    
  • “Touching the Void” by David Greig
  • “A Hunk” by Carles Alberola
  • “Engaged And Lost” („Se ti sposo mi rovino”) by Marco Cavallaro.

All shows were directed on a voluntary basis by Ewa Pilawska.

In 2019 we also celebrated the 20th anniversary of  „Shear Madness” (its Polish preview took place in 1999 on our Big Stage).


The 25th International Festival of Plays Pleasant and Unpleasant – Łódź the Polish theatre capital 

The jubilee edition of the festival took place in March and April. During that time Łódź became, as usual, the theatre capital of Poland.

„Alte Meister” (“Old Masters”),  directed by Thom Luz (produced by Deutsches Theater in Berlin) ex aequo with “The Trojan Women”,  directed by Jan Klata (produced by Wybrzeże Theatre in Gdańsk) were chosen by the viewers in the Audience Plebiscite as the Best Performance of the festival.

Sandra Korzeniak was chosen The Best Actress for the role in  “Under the Influnce”, directed by Maja Kleczewska (produced by The Stanisław Wyspiański Śląski Theatre in Katowice) and Radosław Krzyżowski – The Best Actor for his role in  “A Year of Everyday Life in Central Eastern Europe”, directed by Monika Strzępka (produced by The Helena Modrzejewska National Stary Theatre in Kraków).

During the festival the spectators could also see “The Goethe Institute” directed by Cezary Tomaszewski, “Hymn To Love” directed by Marta Górnicka, „Ashes And Diamonds – the Riddle of Immortality” directed by Marcin Libera and “Uhlans” directed by Piotr Cieplak. Powszechny Theatre presented two spectacles – “Come Back” and “Ferragosto”.


Powszechny Theatre in Łódź – “cult place”, Golden Masks and The Best… 

In 2019 we received two Golden Masks – “Come Back” was voted by the critics as the best performance of the season. The title of the best actress went to Anna Januszewska for her role of Bobby Kleks in “Come Back”.

“Teatr” monthly published its “The best of the season” ranking. In different categories critics chose the most important artistic events in Polish theatre. We were mentioned 4 times in the ranking! Jacek Wakar, Wiesław Kowalski and Jacek Sieradzki chose “Come Back” by Przemysław Pilarski as the best Polish play and Henryk Mazurkiewicz awarded Monika Kępka as the best actress for her role of daughter in the same spectacle.

We are very happy because of the distinctions given to us by our spectators, among others for Mega Plaster Kultury for the International Festival of Plays Pleasant and Unpleasant, Plaster Kultury for Powszechny Theatre as the “cult place” and Idol Kultury (first award in the “culture institution of the Łódź province” category).

In the 28th  edition of „Subjective list of theatre actors”, its author Jacek Sieradzki, famous Polish theatre critic, put two actors who had played in previews in Powszechny Threatre in Łódź. Przemysław Chojęta was placed in “on top” category for his role of Gustaw Herling-Grudziński in „Ferragosto”. In “mastery” category Jacek Sieradzki put Anna Januszewska who had played the role of Bobby Kleks in “Come Back”.

- Our artistic profile is very clear, our position  is very strong, our alliance with the audience is very good. The only thing we are fighting for is the modernization of our theatre. We are the only Łódź theatre that has not been modernized yet. We very strongly believe it will soon begin – says Ewa Pilawska.


409 spectacles and 4 million zloties’ income

Altogether in 2019 we presented 409 shows (almost 230 on our Small Stage), we realized more than 150 educational workshops. Our Theatre was visited by more than 130,000 spectators. Thanks to the results we are one of the leading drama theatres in Poland.

Total income from the sale of the tickets and from our sponsors (donation from the Ministry of Culture included) amounted to almost 4 million zloties. The general subsidy from the Lodz City Hall for Powszechny Theatre in Łódź in 2019 amounted to 4,370,000 zloties (+1,000,000 zloties for International Festival of Plays Pleasant and Unpleasant).