10 Questions for... Bartosz Bielenia
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Bartosz Bielenia, Bartosz Bielenia, photo: Sonja Orlewicz-Zakrzewska, center, bartosz-bielenia-fot-sonia-orlewicz-zakrzewska-1.jpg
What makes the rising star Bartosz Bielenia – who stars in the 2020 Oscar-nominated film ‘Corpus Christi’ – laugh? What moves him? And, if he weren't an actor, what would he be? Marcelina Obarska asks the 'Corpus Christi' actor 10 quick-fire questions.
Which artist has influenced you the most and why?
At first, I was moved most by literature. In high school, my favourite writer was Herman Hesse. However, my theatrical awakening came along with bootleg recordings of Krzysztof Warlikowski’s plays, which made their way into our acting class. That was something. I had no idea that theatre could be done that way, that it was possible to work with a text like that – not even just adapting one play but putting different works together. It blew my mind. From those recordings, it was The Tempest made the biggest impression on me. I remember being fascinated by Renate Jett – I saw this non-Pole performing in Polish. She did it in this completely unobvious way, it was extremely inspiring. Not long ago, I was lucky enough to meet Renate – we drank orange juice together.
When it comes to Polish artists from other fields, I was always moved by Władysław Hasior. Why? Because the transience of emotions counts.
What’s your favourite drink or dish?
Lately, my favourite drink has been cold water with quince juice. And mescal. I’m a vegetarian, so when it comes to traditional Polish food I like pierogi with cabbage and mushrooms the most. And some barszcz to go with it. A little while ago I made pierogi in Brazil and the Brazilians were delighted. They said I should open a pierogi stand.
Your first paycheck?
I was seven and I played the title role in The Little Prince in the Dramatyczny Theatre in Białystok. I was the youngest taxpayer in the Podlasie region. When my parents told me that, I was so proud of it.
What moves you?
Movies with Robin Williams. My dog Kredyt (Credit) also moves me, but not so he makes me cry – he has a pretty good life.
The happiest moment in your career?
The happiest moment of your career?
Now this is the first thing that comes to mind: it’s 5:30 in the morning, I’m sitting in the bathroom in Los Angeles, just after Corpus Christi was nominated for an Oscar, and listening to my emotional parents over the phone. All these truly incredible moments still have so much bitterness in them, that it’s hard for me to choose a fully happy one. Every time I think of a happy moment, I remember the other side of it too.
I think it’s also worth mentioning my beginnings, so when I got into theatre school on my first try. A huge dream came true and I stood in front of an enormous, clear unknown. The holiday after I got in was the most carefree time of my life. After graduating, my highlights were Mauser directed by Theodoros Therzopoulos and Hamlet by Krzyś Garbaczewski.
contemporary polish film
contemporary polish filmmakers
Interview originally conducted in Polish, translated by NR, Jan 2020