Teatr 21

Teatr 21 is a theater company whose actors are mainly people with Down syndrome and autism. During the 16 years of its activity, the group has created more than a dozen plays, presented in theaters and institutions all over Poland. The group has performed at national (Wroclaw, Poznan, Gdansk, Krakow) and international festivals (Prague, Berlin, Helsinki, Freiburg). In 2021 Teatr 21 was awarded with Paszport POLITYKI award in "Theatre" category. Apart from artistic activity, Teatr 21 is also engaged in education, pedagogy of theater, publishing activity, organizes conferences, lectures and works in international networks.

Currently, Teatr 21 is working on a project of the Centre for Inclusive Arts, which will be the first social institution of culture in Warsaw entirely dedicated to the work of artists with disabilities. Its main task will be to include various social groups in the field of art, culture and science. There will be, among other things, meetings with artists, workshops for families and the elderly, lectures on disability studies and art of people with disabilities, exhibitions of visual artists and many others. The space itself and all events will be adapted to the needs of people with various disabilities. In addition, the Centre for Inclusive Arts will become the permanent home of Teatr 21, which has had to operate without a venue for 16 years. The Centre for Inclusive Arts program is co-financed by the City of Warsaw. 

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Teatr 21

EVENTS

 
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Revolution That Never Was There
FRI 17 SEP

The play is a direct reaction to the protest of people with disabilities and their parents that began in the Polish parliament on 18 April and lasted until 27 May 2018.

“We’ve prepared a performance-concert. As a theater that very vigilantly, attentively and criticallyobserves the Polish social and political reality related to people with disabilities, we could not leave the forty-day occupation of the Sejm without comment. Such a gesture cannot be ignored by us.

It had its weight, its strength and its burden! We want to evoke this event once again and create in the theater an opportunity to enter the field of social tensions together!” (Justyna Sobczyk, director)

The play "Revolution That Never Was There" is not a reconstruction of the events, but rather a play with the meanings and emotions that accompanied the protest in the Sejm.

The protest, watched by all of Poland in the spring, left behind not only disappointment and painful evidence of the marginalization of the needs of people with disabilities. It also left behind archives - banners, letters and postcards written to and by the protesters themselves.

The actors of "Revolution That Never Was There" will make use of them, asking from the stage what happened in the Sejm, about the image of people with disabilities in Poland, and, finally, whether the community of people with disabilities can integrate in a common cause.

The theatrical revolution will give spectators and actors a chance to check whether the social conviction that people with disabilities should give up their professional development, limit their needs to a social minimum, and limit their private life to staying in apartments and specialist centers - is in accordance with their needs?

"Revolution That Never Was There" is a performance driven by the tension between the top-down norm and deviation from it; between the moral criteria not spoken out loud and the actors' personal needs and opinions shouted from the stage. It is theater that explores the space between the explicit and the (still) hidden.

Credits


Director: Justyna Sobczyk Dramaturg: Justyna Lipko-Konieczna
Scriptwriter: Justyna Lipko-Konieczna, Justyna Sobczyk
Stage movement: Justyna Wielgus
Wardrobe and scenography: Wisła Nicieja
Stage designer assistant: Aleksandra Tomczyk
Lighting director: Sebastian Klim
Live music by Pokusa band: Tymek Bryndal, Natan Kryszk, Teo Olter
Producers: Dagna Dąbrowiecka, Katarzyna Stępniak Cast: Beata Bandurska, Teresa Foks, Daniel Krajewski, Maja Kowalczyk, Barbara Lityńska, Aleksander Orliński, Martyna Peszko, Maciej Pesta, Aleksandra Skotarek, Magdalena Świątkowska, Piotr Sakowski
Partners / funding:

Event within the framework of the "Disability and Society" project realized by Biennale Warszawa in cooperation with Teatr 21, co-funded by the City of Warsaw.

partners: Teatr SOHO, Warsaw Dance Department





Available from 17-09 12:00 till 01-10 12:00

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Body-to-Body with Marilyn
FRI 15 OCT

In the video performance "Body-to-Body with Marilyn", Teatr 21 actresses Maja Kowalczyk and Aleksandra Skotarek play the role of Marilyn Monroe.

Credits


Director: Justyna Sobczyk Dramaturg: Justyna Lipko-Konieczna
Scriptwriter: Justyna Lipko-Konieczna, Justyna Sobczyk
Stage movement: Justyna Wielgus
Wardrobe and scenography: Wisła Nicieja
Stage designer assistant: Aleksandra Tomczyk
Lighting director: Sebastian Klim
Live music by Pokusa band: Tymek Bryndal, Natan Kryszk, Teo Olter
Producers: Dagna Dąbrowiecka, Katarzyna Stępniak Cast: Beata Bandurska, Teresa Foks, Daniel Krajewski, Maja Kowalczyk, Barbara Lityńska, Aleksander Orliński, Martyna Peszko, Maciej Pesta, Aleksandra Skotarek, Magdalena Świątkowska, Piotr Sakowski
Partners / funding:

Event within the framework of the "Disability and Society" project realized by Biennale Warszawa in cooperation with Teatr 21, co-funded by the City of Warsaw.

partners: Teatr SOHO, Warsaw Dance Department





This American icon of pop culture is still perceived as a symbol of femininity, liberated sexuality and one of the most recognizable and appreciated actresses in the world.Reading her diaries reveals the image of a very conscious artist, who explores acting techniques, a poetess and an intellectual, which seemingly does not fit the image of a sexpot. And is there room in this image for illness or disability?

The gesture of using the figure of Marilyn Monroe by the actresses of Teatr 21 is a play on the ideas and expectations of the audience connected with the perception of femininity, acting and sexuality of people with disabilities.

The artists enter into a game with the figure of Monroe. In their artistic work, they explore how the disabled body is perceived in society. What are the boundaries between norm and non-normativity, human and non-human, masculinity and femininity? The actors use manifestos and theatrical means to confront taboos about disability.

An additional context of this work is loneliness caused by isolation. It acquires an additional meaning here. It shows how society's ideas about what is allowed and not allowed determine the life chances of people with intellectual disabilities. Theater, dance and poetry become a field of expression of their artistic and personal needs. The audience becomes the trustees of this moving testimony.

The performance was commissioned by Saša Asentić within the project "DIS- is not included". The event was funded by the Department for Culture and Europe of the Senate of the City of Berlin. It premiered in February 2021 at Sophiensæle in Berlin

Available from 15-10 12:00 till 22-10 23:59

 
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How I Stopped Being Perfect
FRI 19 NOV

Together with the characters of the play we will go to visit him and find out why he has only one fang.

We will also learn the story of a boy turned into an elephant, who saw no other way out than to perform in the circus.

What will connect the fates of these characters? Let's embark on a journey to discover an unknown story! Let's create a new story about the world in which there is a place for everyone. In the circus tent, anything can happen! 

"How I Stopped Being Perfect" is a family spectacle staged in a circus tent, produced by the Zbigniew Raszewski Theatre Institute and Teatr 21. In this performance, filled with live music, questions about difference and diversity are juxtaposed with breathtaking acrobatic feats, and humour with reflection on the long road that sometimes leads to self-acceptance.

The show is inspired by the myth of Ganesha - a Hindu deity with the head of an elephant, and the true story of Joseph Merrick - also known as the Elephant Man. Drawing on the presence of circus artists, dramatic actors, musicians, and the actors and actresses of Teatr 21, we invite you to a performance that brings audiences and artists together in a shared theatrical and circus play. With the young audience in mind we will discover stories of otherness, in which the protagonists had to face the lack of acceptance. Together with the audience, under the circus shtick, we will create a world in which there is room for everyone and diversity becomes a value.

Sometimes we feel bad, sad and there are moments when we just want to disappear. And supposedly in India lives half elephant, half man, who turns human worries and troubles into delicious sweets.

Credits


Artistic concept - Justyna Lipko-Konieczna, Justyna Sobczyk
Directing - Justyna Sobczyk, Justyna Lipko-Konieczna, Justyna Wielgus
Dramaturgy, script - Justyna Lipko-Konieczna
Movement direction - Justyna Wielgus
Set and costume design - Wisłomira Nicieja
Make-up - Magdalena Lerynowicz
Lighting design and production - Sebastian Klim
Music - the band Pokusa (Tymek Bryndal, Natan Kryszk, Teo Olter)
Director's assistant - Zuzanna Jarmakowska
Hindu dance consultation - Kalina Duwadzińska
Technical director - Dariusz Adamski
Sound design - Michal Rokicki
Tattoo designs on costumes: Marcin Domański
Promotion: Maja Raczyńska (Zbigniew Raszewski Theater Institute), Jakub Drzewiecki (Teatr 21 Foundation)
Production: Maria Babicka (Zbigniew Raszewski Theatre Institute), Marta Kuźmiak (Teatr 21 Foundation
Partners / funding: The producers of the show would like to thank the Nowy Teatr International Cultural Centre for providing the rehearsal space. The play was produced within the framework of the "Lato w teatrze" program. It is a co-production of Zbigniew Raszewski Theater Institute and Teatr 21 / Centre for Inclusive Arts. Co-financed by the Ministry of Culture, National Heritage and Sport. The programme of Teatr 21 / Centre for Inclusive Arts is co-financed by the City of Warsaw.





 

Available from 19-11 12:00 till 25-11 12:00

Conversation: Episode 1
Accessibility of Artistic Education - Sweden

THU 16 SEP

Series of talks about cultural inclusive policies in various European countries. 

"Accessibility of Artistic Education" is a series of talks initiated by Theatre 21 within the framework of the Inclusive Arts Centre project, which aim to present various strategies for including people with disabilities in mainstream artistic education and theater life. We want to look at how the policy of equal access to education and representation of people with disabilities in cultural institutions, especially in theaters and universities preparing them for acting, is implemented in various European countries. 

We decided to conduct the first interview in the series with people from Moomsteatern (Malmö, Sweden). In 2005, five actors with intellectual disabilities, who are part of a Swedish ensemble, graduated from the Malmö Academy of Drama and as a result were hired on the same conditions (employment contract) as professional actors working in Swedish theaters. How did this process take place, how was the relationship between the Moomsteatern actors and the rest of the year and the Academy community, how did the acquired acting resources affect the language of Moomsteatern? What are, in retrospect, the benefits of this experience and why did it not find a continuation?

Moderator:

Monika Kwaśniewska (Department of Theatre and Drama, Jagiellonian University)

Guests:

Dennis Nilsson (Moomsteatern actor)

Sandra Johansson (Moomsteatern, executive director)

Barbara Wilczek-Ekholm (lecturer, choreographer and dancer)

Available from 16-09 12:00 till 25-11 12:00

 

Conversation: Episode 2
Accessibility of Artistic Education -Netherlands

THU 23 SEP

Series of talks about cultural inclusive policies in various European countries. 

"Accessibility of Artistic Education" is a series of talks initiated by Theatre 21 within the framework of the Inclusive Arts Centre project, which aim to present various strategies for including people with disabilities in mainstream artistic education and theater life. We want to look at how the policy of equal access to education and representation of people with disabilities in cultural institutions, especially in theaters and universities preparing them for acting, is implemented in various European countries. 

Moderator:

Monika Kwaśniewska (Department of Theatre and Drama, Jagiellonian University)

Guests:

Dominique Mol (Theater Babel Rotterdam, project leader) 

Patrick Nassy (Theater Babel Rotterdam, actor)

Available from 23-09 12:00 till 25-11 12:00

 

Conversation: Episode 3
Accessibility of Artistic Education -Czechia

THU 7 OCT

Series of talks about cultural inclusive policies in various European countries. 

"Accessibility of Artistic Education" is a series of talks initiated by Theatre 21 within the framework of the Inclusive Arts Centre project, which aim to present various strategies for including people with disabilities in mainstream artistic education and theater life. We want to look at how the policy of equal access to education and representation of people with disabilities in cultural institutions, especially in theaters and universities preparing them for acting, is implemented in various European countries. 

Moderator:

Monika Kwaśniewska (Department of Theatre and Drama, Jagiellonian University)

Guests:

Prof. Zoja Mikotová - artist, director, choreographer and educator. She has worked as a director, choreographer and mime artist in theaters in the Czech Republic, Hungary, Poland, Germany, Austria, France, Italy, USA and Japan. She founded the Department of Educational Drama for the Deaf at the Theatre Faculty of the Academy of Music and Drama (DIFA JAMU), where she has run the Educational Drama Studio for the Deaf since 1992. She has become well known for the successes of the Theatre of the Deaf (Caprichos, Genesis, Odyssey, Busyness, Tales and Dreams productions) and of her students and graduates at festivals in the Czech Republic and abroad.

Available from 07-10 12:00 till 25-11 12:00

 

Conversation: Episode 4
Accessibility of Artistic Education -Ireland

THU 21 OCT

Series of talks about cultural inclusive policies in various European countries. 

"Accessibility of Artistic Education" is a series of talks initiated by Theatre 21 within the framework of the Inclusive Arts Centre project, which aim to present various strategies for including people with disabilities in mainstream artistic education and theater life. We want to look at how the policy of equal access to education and representation of people with disabilities in cultural institutions, especially in theaters and universities preparing them for acting, is implemented in various European countries. 

Moderator:

Monika Kwaśniewska (Department of Theatre and Drama, Jagiellonian University)

Guests:

Petal Pilley (director, Blue Teapot Theatre Company)

Jenny Cox (actress, Blue Teapot Theatre Company)

Available from 21-10 12:00 till 25-11 12:00

 

Conversation: Episode 5
Accessibility of Artistic Education - France

THU 4 NOV

Series of talks about cultural inclusive policies in various European countries. 

"Accessibility of Artistic Education" is a series of talks initiated by Theatre 21 within the framework of the Inclusive Arts Centre project, which aim to present various strategies for including people with disabilities in mainstream artistic education and theater life. We want to look at how the policy of equal access to education and representation of people with disabilities in cultural institutions, especially in theaters and universities preparing them for acting, is implemented in various European countries. 

Moderator:

Monika Kwaśniewska (Department of Theatre and Drama, Jagiellonian University)

Guests:

Luciole Duvivier (Compagnie de l' Oiseau-Mouche) 

Leonor Baudouin (Compagnie de l' Oiseau-Mouche, director)

Available from 04-11 12:00 till 25-11 12:00