Tragedy of John

Title: Performance "Tragedy of John" / "Tragedia Jana"

Creators: CHOREA Theatre & Warszawskie Towarzystwo Sceniczne (Poland)

Direction: Waldemar Raźniak

Choreography: Liwia Bargieł

Music: Tomasz Krzyżanowski

Costumes: Emil Wysocki

Directors Assistant: Wiktor Moraczewski

Cast: Janusz Adam Biedrzycki, Joanna Chmielecka, Paweł Głowaty, Joanna Jaworska-Maciaszek / Daria Szymańska, Michał Jóźwik, Majka Justyna, Małgorzata Lipczyńska, Anna Maszewska, Wiktor Moraczewski, Ewa Otomańska, Dorota Porowska, Tomasz Rodowicz, Elina Toneva

Premiere: 17.11.2018, Art_Inkubator in Fabryka Sztuki in Lodz


Date: 25.08.2019 / Sunday /

Time: 7 pm

Place: Stage in Art_Inkubator in Fabryka Sztuki in Lodz

Tickets: 20 / 30 pln

Duration: 75 minutes (no intermissions)

Viewers' age: 15 +



This early Baroque text written by Jakub Gawatowic in 1619 at the St. John's Fair in Kamionka Strumiłowa (today in Ukraine) is a unique monument of the Polish language and a testimony to the tradition of fairground theater. The whole played once by students of the Jesuit college on the one hand contains elements of farce and grotesque, on the other, divine fear and horror (mysterium tremendum). The vivid and dynamic language of Gawatowic does not give way to the masters of the renaissance Polish literature - Jan Kochanowski and Mikołaj Rej.

The play tells a story of John the Baptist who engages in a combat with the sins of lust, pride, cowardice and greed - all of which consume the world. He enters into conflict with Herod who lives it up and takes his brother's wife. A pivotal element of the scheme is a mythical dance performed by the daughter, Herodias (better known as Salome) due to which the disobedient saint ends up being beheaded. But in the version by Gawatowic - as in the medieval mystery play - evil is overcome and those guilty of injustice - punished.

Fair's games, customs and rituals of celebration, rooted in the Pagan and Christian intricately intertwined tradition, gave sense and developed - as they still do - a rhythm of our society. In the era of research on the religiosity genes VMAT2, the clash of ideological systems and the development of artificial intelligence is worth considering whether faith is in any way rational? Where does her power come from and is it important today? What distinguishes the ultra-religious attitude from the fanatic attitude and what canons of values can be considered today as valid?


CHOREA Theatre - was founded in 2004 in Lublin, as a result of collaboration between two groups of performers. First group, 'The Ancient Orchestra', was developing musical and rhythmical work. Second group, 'Dances of the Labyrinth', was experimenting on movement and dance. Since 2004, before they found their residence in Lodz in 2007, they have been working in several locations. The company was first based in Naleczow, Srebrna Gora and Warsaw, they cooperated with Erthfall Dance Theatre in Cardiff (Wales). Since 2007 they established a permanent base in the city of Lodz, co-founding with Lodz Art Centre a cultural institution named Fabryka Sztuki (Art Factory) and they own an amazing industrial theatre spaces (for rehearsals, performances and workshops) situated in the 19th Century factories, named Art_Inkubator in Fabryka Sztuki in Lodz.
During 15 years of activity CHOREA Theatre fully developed its educational and artistic work. CHOREA artists organized many international workshop sessions, transnational artistic projects, several editions of their own International Theatre Festival Retroperspektywy and nationwide Theatre Festival Perspektywy, and created more than 40 theatre productions, performances, and concerts. In 2015 CHOREA artists recorded a musical album 'Lullabies' and published actors training handbook 'Actors phisical training. From individual to group actions'. CHOREA group collaborates with artists from all over the world: USA, Great Britain, Israel, Spain, India, Greece, Italy, Bulgaria, Syria, Japan, Russia, Belarus, Czech Republic, Slovakia, Hungary, Georgia, Moldova, etc.
During last years CHOREA Theatre presented their performances, concerts and intensive workshop sessions all over the world. In 2009 CHOREA performed on International Meeting on Ancient Drama Festival in Delphi, (Greece). In 2010 we cooperated with Rosanna Gamson Worldwide Theatre in Los Angeles (USA). In 2011 we presented our work in Escena Contemporanea Festival in Madrid (Spain) and in Mayerhold Theatre Centre in Moscow (Russia). In 2012 we visited Stage Centre in Tel Aviv (Israel). In 2011, 2012 and 2013 we performed on Bharat Rang Mahotsav - the biggest international Theatre Festival in India. In 2014 and 2015 we showed our performances in Art Carnuntum Verein für Kunst Geschichte Theater Kultur Festival in Art Carnuntum (Austria). In 2015 we presented our work in Luxembourg (Luxembourg) and in Chisnau (Moldova). In 2015 and 2016 we performed in Tbilisi International Festival of Theatre (Georgia). In 2017 we performed in Berlin (Germany), Stockholm (Sweden) and in St.Petersburg (Russia). In 2018 we visited Baerum Kulturhus and sandvika Teater in Oslo (Norway), we leaded an intensive workshop session, in terms of "Polish Theatre Days” during II International Theatre Festival TheATRIUM 2018 in Drama Theatre in Klaipeda (Lithuania), performed in Danube Bend Theatre in Vac (Hungary) in terms of V4 Festival and Theatre Meeting 2018, and performed on Festivalul International de Teatru Pentru Publicul Tanar in Iasi (Romania).