Issue 9/2020



Area 150 M2


The eponymous field with an area of one hundred and fifty square meters is a reference to the stage of the Theatre in Wałbrzych, the author being its artistic director. When the pandemic broke out, the stage closed. People say ironically that it was plowed and rapeseed was planted on it. The actresses and actors were left without work overnight, just before the premiere. In a series of monologues, they talk about how they feel in the new situation and what ideas they have about what to do next. The play is full of humour and hope, but also criticism and anxiety.

The Year of the Metal Rat

Michał Walczak

A pandemic comedy. A married couple spends the time of the plague in their apartment. He works remotely from home.  She had to close her beauty salon, and she is bored and frustrated. Their loneliness is made more pleasant by watching TV series and playing erotic games as seen on TV: they both become actors of their home theatre. In addition, a real actor, making extra money as a courier, knocks at their door. Will he join the game? Meanwhile, wild animals appear on the empty streets.

How we buried Iossif Vissarionovitch

Artur Solomonov

In one of the renowned Moscow theatres, rehearsals for a play about the life of Joseph Stalin are underway - the topic is electrifying because the memory of the dictator is still a subject of disputes among ordinary people. This time, however, it turns out that the incumbent President of the Russian Federation also wants to speak up. Absent in the flesh, he directs the performance, thanks to the help of his associates and with moderate resistance from the helpless actors. It is an attempt to write the version of his predecessor's story that would suit him best.

Essays, Studies 

The box, or what does not kill us

Joanna Krakowska 

The pandemic – in all the limitations it imposed on us and attempts to overcome them with Internet projects, "online culture", screenings of previously recorded performances, zoom seminars and talks about fundamental issues - has given us a practical course in the anthropology of spectacles, a review of their recent history and a journey to the origins of theatre.

The return of the body?

Piotr Morawski 

How can the mass experiencing of corporeality in the situation of removing human bodies from public space influence the formation of reflections on corporeality? Suddenly it has turned out that the old good theatrical theories about the flow of social energy or nourishment – having been treated with a pinch of salt, as perhaps something embarrassing, something belonging to the repertoire of esoteric concepts –  can again be useful, not so much even as theoretical entities, but embodied theories.

Subjective excerpts from #HOT16CHALLENGE2

Magda Mosiewicz 

The rules, like # HOT16 itself, are minimalist: the first artist nominates the next five. The nominees have seventy-two hours to record sixteen bars to any bit and nominate five more performers. In the description of each clip on YouTube there is a link to a charity fundraising page, to which both performers and recipients can donate. Goal: million zlotys (achieved in a week).

We Won’t Return to Normality

Josh Plough

Why do we collect memes? What’s the point of archiving a million fragmented moments, and what do they add up to when collated and analysed? Memes have, for better or worse, been shared into the popular consciousness: becoming substrates of war, conspiracy theories, the rightwing, as well as humour, sensitivity, community and mutual support. More than most cultural artefacts memes can reflect the mental health of a population.

Nothing sacred

Marta Bryś

From 2012 to 2018, the artists of the Pożar w burdelu commented on stage primarily on matters concerning Warsaw, and later on current national matters. It is not easy to write about the project by Michał Walczak and Maciej Łubieński from the perspective of what seems to be a short time, because what was amusing and surprisingly accurate, and at times sounded like intellectual disdain and exaggerated fantasy, today has partially become reality.

How Stalin rose from the dead

Krystyna Kurczab-Redlich 

On 20 December 2019 in Moscow, exactly one hundred and forty years after he was born, a screening of Stalin's portrait with the caption "I WILL COME" appeared on the facades of many houses. These dummies-ruffles unraveling from the rubble of history are like watchmen of the future in which time will be turned back by decades. A time filled with fear and hostility. Hostility to the rest of the world, fear - for internal use.

Ups and downs of participation

Katarzyna Niedurny

Is the success of participatory projects not followed by a real redistribution of power a fraud? Is it not only simulating actions serving on a macroscale to create phantoms convenient for the authorities, catalysts of social anger, and on a microscale simulating their own importance and actions? Can failure not only show us new paths of development, but also demonstrate that the system within which we operate is impossible to maintain?

The 2000s. Małgorzata Hajewska-Krzysztofik and Danuta Stenka

Ewa Hevelke 

Another feature within the "Faces" series – history told through the prism of the characters and roles of actresses emblematic of their time.

The portrait of the artist from the times of depravity

Przemysław Czapliński 

The play Scream, a Bit Quieter premiered on 26 June 2020 at the Nowy Theatre in Poznań. Written by Marcin Kącki and directed by Aneta Groszyńska, it is a stage biography of Wojciech Bąk during the Stalinist years. The poet was then affected by repressions more severe than those suffered by such legendary figures as Herbert or Tyrmand. Deprived of work and the possibility of publishing his writings, illegally imprisoned in a psychiatric hospital, expelled from the writers' union, and on the verge of losing his home and civil rights (the procedure of incapacitation being initiated in absentia), Bąk became almost nobody at the end of Stalinism.


Justyna Drath, Marek Beylin, Barbara Klicka, Tadeusz Nyczek


Notes on plays: Michał Łukowicz Superbohater; Natalia Błok Bomba; Filip Bajon Molo, Na wyciągu. Playbill. Library