Growtoski's Empty Room

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Jerzy Grotowski (1933–99) was a Polish stage director, theatrical theorist, and founder and director of the small but influential Polish Laboratory Theatre. Most of Grotowski’s theater-making took place in this and similar small theaters and studio spaces, and as a result one of his central fascinations was the actor’s work within the context of an empty room. The essays in Grotowski’s Empty Room analyse how Grotowski’s explorations in the theater continue to challenge dramatists and directors.

The contributors to this volume reflect with special insight on how theater scholars and practitioners can further Grotowski’s work and how his legacy will be developed in the theater. Among the contributors are Leszek Kolankiewicz and Zbigniew Osinski, his close collaborators; Marco de Marinis, Franco Ruffini, and Fernando Taviani, scholars who have followed Grotowski’s works from the 14 years he spent in Italy; and Swedish filmmaker and writer Marianne Ahrne and director Eugenio Barba, who reveal the strong impression Grotowski left on all those who met him and express the challenge of those who must now work in the empty rooms he has left behind.


The “empty room” of this illuminating book’s title refers not only to the potential of the training, rehearsal and performance space, but also to the metaphorical space left since Jerzy Grotowski’s death in 1999 [. . .] The book examines the foundation of the Teatr Laboratorium, and offers assessments of Growtowski’s work, and ulimately, his legacy [. . .] This welcome and revealing volume shows us that Grotowski’s “empty room” remains full of very real challenges. Contemporary Theatre Review


There is much to discover in Grotowski’s Empty Room, either through research into the ’inner life’ proceeding from the line of Art as vehicle, or through a return to the empty room as theatre laboratory. For practitioners wishing to pursue these paths, or for scholars seeking to understand them, these essays are indispensable. The Drama Review


ISBN: 9781906497231
Rights: UCP
Pages: 240, 16 halftones
Size: 6" x 9"
Format: Hardback
Publication Year: November 2009
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