A film and theater director, writer, graphic designer, creator of music videos. Born on the 20th of January 1962 in Cieszyn. He graduated from the Faculty of Directing in Łódź.
A film and theater director, writer, graphic designer, creator of music videos.
He is currently collaborating with the Jaracz Theatre in Łódź, the Common Theatre / Teatr Powszechny in Warsaw and the TV theatre. His productions usually use few actors and they are concentrated on the psychology of characters and the relations between them. The observations are close and detailed.
In an interview for Teatr monthly Grzegorzek admitted, 'I'm interested in suggestive interpersonal relations (...) the attempts to reach the deepest parts of our personality excite me a lot'.
Grzegorzek's choices of dramatic material, therefore, come as no surprise. He favors psychological dramas by American and British authors, such as Venom (Jad) by Ronald Harwood (1994), The Glass Menagerie (Szklana menażeria, 1997), A Streetcar Named Desire (Tramwaj zwany pożądaniem, 1998) and Orpheus Descending (Skóra węża, 2002) by Tennessee Williams, which he has staged at the Jaracz Theatre in Łódź. The Glass Menagerie, Harold Pinter's From Dust You Rose... or Sam Shepard's Simpatico.
In television Grzegorzek continues his psychological interests. He is directing a programme entitled Windows (Okna), the main topics of which are the problems of man in the contemporary world. He has directed such productions as Ashes to Ashes (Z prochu powstałeś...) by Harold Pinter (1998), Simpatico by Sam Shepard (2000), and Amy's View (Zdaniem Amy) by David Hare (2002). In recent years, he has staged The Country (Na wsi) by Martin Crimp (2003) and The Glory of Living (Blask życia) by Rebecca Gilman (2005) in Łódź. He has directed stirring, intimate productions based on dramas by Judith Thompson - Lion in the Streets (Lew na ulicy, 2006) and Habitat (2007). In 2008, Grzegorzek for the first time took up the challenge of classical drama when he directed William Shakespeare's Macbeth in Łódź. In a conversation with Katarzyna Bielas he said about working on this play:
(…) Macbeth in Jaracz Theatre in Łódź is a play taken from my intestines, realized with full energy. I can say without modesty that almost everyone I work with is fully involved. We understand each other, work in a fever, in a flow combined with hard, methodical work. In this case it was a sensual energy, which came not from an intellectual analysis of Shakespeare's text, but from an attempt to bend the dark energies that took their toll on the protagonists of this drama. Musicians played crazy, intestinal sounds on their drums, everyone vibrated and, in my opinion, created a dark, powerful mess. (Gazeta Wyborcza, 25.10.2015)
A year later in the Studio Theatre of the Łódź Film School he directed Isaac Babel's Dusk. In 2010 in Jaracz Theatre he created an original interpretation of Simon An-ski's Dibbuk, previously taken on by directors such as Andrzej Wajda and Krzysztof Warlikowski.
Kaj Munk's The Word, staged a year later was also successful. Jacek Wakar wrote:
With this play Grzegorzek confirms his one of few true authors in Polish theatre, and the cast from Łódź - that it forms a solid group. And that even in an institutional context one can work breaking safe rules. (Przekrój nr 1/2012).
Grzegorzek's debut film, The Conversation with the Man from the Closet (Rozmowa z czlowiekiem z szafy) was awarded with the Jury's Special Prize during the Festival of Polish Feature Films in Gdynia in 1993. The film was also awarded the Andrzej Munk Award and the award for the director's debut at the International Film Festival in Alexandria (1994). In 1999, the director made the hallucinatory Queen of Angels (Królowa aniołów), an exploration of the relationship between a man and a woman, in which past and present realities intertwine.
The audience had to wait ten years fo another Grzegorzek's film. I am yours (Jestem twój) was based on a play of Judith Thompson, whose works he had before staged in the theatre. The shocking story about passion and betrayal was praised mostly thanks to the terrific work of its actresses: Małgorzata Buczkowska, Roma Gąsiorowska and Dorota Kolak, who received and award at the Gdynia Film Festival. Their roles were also nominated for the Zbyszek Cybulski award. The director spoke to Kino about why he chose this particular play:
I think that, paradoxically, it tells more about Polish society than any Polish script I've encountered. This psichological drama hides a surprisingly accurate image o our botched-up democracy: social and economical stratification, emotional alienation, and a sinister schizophrenia set between an inner void and the lies of "social reality", which killed our sense of value and communal identification a long time ago. ("Kino", nr10/2009)
In 2015 Grzegorzek directed Śpiewający obrusik / A Singing Tablecloth, a feature diploma of young actors from the Łódź Film School, which was the first project of this kind in artistic schools. The film, composed of four independent stories, received the main prize in the Visions Apart competition. Janusz Wróblewski wrote in Polityka weekly:
(…) The craziest one is the title story, A Singing Tablecloth, which connects elements from a Greek fable, Melanesian magic, animism and Bollywood energy with Mariusz Grzegorzek's uncontrollable immagination, rooted deeply in popculture. Another hidden thread is the essence of acting, the relation with a role, a rite of passage. It was supposed to be a modest, independent film, but what was created is a spontaneous, visionary feature showing the possibilities of cinema and an amazing talent of many people (Polityka, 09.02.2016).
- 1988 - Jury's special mention and the Youth Film Library Award for his short fiction feature Krakatoa (Krakatau) at the 34th International Short Film Festival in Oberhausen; 2nd place prize for the short fiction feature Krakatoa at the Festival of Student Film in Łódź; Grand Prix for the student film The Bug at the International Film School Festival in Tours, France; Award for student film The Bug (Robak) at the International Short Film Festival in Munich;
- 1993 - 3rd place prize for the film Conversation with a Cupboard Man (Rozmowa z człowiekiem z szafy) at the Film Festival of Young East European Cinema in Cottbus, Germany; Jury's Special Award for the film Conversation with a Cupboard Man at the Polish Film Festival in Gdynia; Andrzej Munk Award presented by the National Higher School of Film, Television and Theatre in Łódź for the film Conversation with a Cupboard Man; Special mention for directorial debut for the film Conversation with a Cupboard Man at the Venice IFF;
- 1994 - Directorial debut award for the film Conversation with a Cupboard Man at the Alexandria IFF;
- 1996 - The Łódź Golden Mask for direction, for the production of Agnes of God (Agnes od Boga) by John Pielmeier at the Jaracz Theater in Łódź;
- 1997 - Award for direction, for the production of Agnes of God by John Pielmeier at the Jaracz Theater in Łódź, at the 2nd Women and... Women Women's Theater Festival in Bydgoszcz;
- 2001 - Jury's special mention in the Perfection category and the Stanisław Bieniasz Medal (awarded by the monthly Śląsk) for the production of David Hare's play Amy's View (Zdaniem Amy) at the Zygmunt Hübner Public Theater / Teatr Powszechny im. Zygmunta Hübnera in Warsaw, at the 1st Reality Revealed Contemporary Drama Festival in Zabrze;
- 2005 - Stanisław Bieniasz Medal (awarded by the monthly Śląsk) for best production - The Glory of Living (Blask życia) by Rebecca Gilman at the Jaracz Theater in Łódź, at the 5th Reality Revealed Contemporary Drama Festival in Zabrze; Jury award 'for quality of directorial work with ensemble cast', for The Glory of Living by Rebecca Gilman at the Jaracz Theater in Łódź, at the 4th Festival of Preview Showings in Bydgoszcz;
- 2006 - The Łódź Golden Mask - 3 awards for: best production, stage setting and direction for Lion in the Streets (Lew na ulicy) by Judith Thompson at the Jaracz Theater in Łódź; Grand Prix for the production of The Glory of Living by Rebecca Gilman at the Jaracz Theater in Łódź, at the 15th International Collisions Festival in Kłodzko; Audience Award and President of Jelenia Góra Award Lion in the Streets by Judith Thompson at the Jaracz Theater in Łódź, at the 34th Jelenia Góra Theater Festival;
- 2007 - The Konrad Laurel / Laur Konrada, highest award for direction for The Glory of Living by Rebecca Gilman at the Jaracz Theatre in Łódź, at the 9th Interpretations National Festival of Directors' Arts in Katowice;
- 2008 - The Łódź Golden Mask for experimental theater - for direction in Macbeth by William Shakespeare at the Jaracz Theatre in Łódź.
- 2010 – The Journalists Award for I am yours at the Prowincjonalia Festival in Września, Grand Prix for the play Dusk at the International Theatre School Festival Setkani/ Encounter in Brno.
- 2011 – Bronze Medal Gloria Artis.
- 2012 – Sabina Nowicka's Medal Pro publico bono.
- 2013 - The Energia Kultury Award for special merit in promoting culture in Łódź.
- 2015 - Golden Claw award for the best film in the Visions Apart competition for Śpiewający obrusik / A Singing Tablecloth at the Gdynia Film Festival.
Compiled: April 2002.
Updated: November 2009, July 2016.