An innovative form of theatre, the performance features a chorus of 26 women of various ages and professions. By exposing clichés of pop-culture and evoking musical and literary themes of femininity, rooted in Polish and European traditions, the choir addresses the issue of contemporary models of the woman.
Using an organic voice technique, the chorus restores the repressed voice of women. Groundbreaking formal innovations of this performance offer a chance to present achievements of contemporary Polish theatre, while also bringing social images of life in Poland to international audiences.
Listen to the chorus
As it spits out the sand stuck in its throat
As it takes on its voice
As it builds up the tower of Babel
Who is the chorus?
Modern drama has buried it, covered it with sand
and condemned it to silence
Today the Chorus of Women wants to get its voice back
To create its own voice
The libretto is based on fragments of Antigone, works of Barthes, Foucault and Simone de Beauvoir. It also employs contemporary language of the everyday, quotes from advertisement slogans, cooking recipies and movies. Long-forgotten popular tunes and the sound of a TV set resonate throughout the show.
Contemporary drama broke with the chorus, depriving itself of a certain dimension of tragedy. We have to restore the chorus to the stage and find new forms of its theatrical presence. We have to bring women back into the chorus. The chorus of women will scream, whisper and sing. It will treat words like music. It will transform language into a voice, and incite its subversive powers.
The Chorus explores
- memory: it restores old Polish folk songs, forgotten screenplays and chorus songs form ancient plays.
- voice: it searches for a voice detached from language, in rhythm, echolalia, bourdon,
- gender: it attempts to restore/create a woman's voice within today's culture
concept, libretto, direction: Marta Górnicka
music and composition cooperation: Aleksandra Gryka, Robert Piotrowicz, Paweł Mykietyn, Dobromiła Jaskot, Dj-Lenar.
choreography: Anna Godowska
conducting assistance: Agnieszka Symela
set-design and costumes: Maja Wolak, Anna Maria Karczmarska
literary and scientific cooperation: Agata Adamiecka
produced by: Instytut Teatralny im. Zbigniewa Raszewskiego (Z. Raszewski Theatre Institute)
Taking part in the project are:
Maniucha Bikont, Justyna Chaberek, Finka Heynemann, Alicja Herod, Anna Jagłowska, Marta Jasińska, Katarzyna Jaźnicka, Ewa Kossak, Katarzyna Lalik, Aleksandra Krzaklewska, Aleksandra Matryba, Kamila Michalska, Paulina Pacia, Marta Ponichter, Anna Rusiecka, Monika Sadkowska, Karolina Szulejewska, Anna Stachowicz, Kaja Stępkowska, Olga Szymula and Iwona Tołbińska.
After Kiev, the performance "This is the Chorus Speaking" will be presented in Tokyo (Theater X-cai, October 2011), and Berlin (Hebbel am Ufer Theatre, November 2011).
Date: 3rd - 4th of September, 2011
Venue: Molodoho Theatre, Kiev
Organised by: Z. Raszewski Theatre Institute
Project cofinanced by the Ministry of Culture and National Heritage of the Republic of Poland.