Teatroteka is a series of film adaptations of work by young Polish playwrights, produced by Documentary and Feature Film Studios, Poland’s largest state-owned film production company.
Teatroteka represents a new way of thinking about adaptations of theatrical works, in both the artistic and the production contexts. The films are created by young artists, often making their debuts; thanks to technical and infrastructure support they manage to make intriguing, innovative works.
The idea of the project is to use the potential of film technology to bring to the screen the richest achievements of young Polish playwrights: contemporary works, texts that are often written in a “post-dramatic” form, differing in their styling and conventions from classical drama.
Over the past 15 years, a new generation of authors writing for the stage has arisen in Poland. They have created their own original language, means of expression and form, and have also enriched contemporary drama by introducing questions that concern young people, and their way of perceiving the reality that surrounds us. Young Polish playwrights deserve to be promoted, to be made known to a broader audience: This is the main goal of the project. Appreciating the educational value of Teatroteka, in 2015 a nationwide education program, Teatroteka Creativity Lab, was created, including educational activities for young people based on the works that are performed.
Teatroteka is also a space for directors of the younger generation, who have thus far lacked opportunities to create their own original audio-visual works, despite their significant achievements in theater and their educational accomplishments. This project, involving film specialists grouped around Documentary and Feature Film Studios, has made this possible.
The innovative formula and high artistic level of the series is established and maintained by producer Włodzimierz Niderhaus and Teatroteka’s Program Council, whose members include Zenon Butkiewicz, Krzysztof Domagalik and Maciej Wojtyszko.
Teatroteka’s screen adaptations are achieving recognition at international festivals, notably the Houston International Film Festival where, in the past three years, Teatroteka has received Platinum Remis for Wojciech Faruga and Julia Kijowska’s Valentina and for Magda Fertacz’s Trash Story directed by Marta Miłoszewska, a Silver Remi for Mariusz Bieliński’s Above, and Gold Remis for Zyta Rudzka’s Zucker Bras directed by Agata Puszcz and Anna Wakulik’s Your Highness directed by Agnieszka Smoczyńska. Another huge success was the Grand Prix for Małgorzata Sikorska-Miszczuk’s The Suitcase, directed by Wawrzyniec Kostrzewski, at Two Theatres: Sopot 2015, a festival staged by Polish Radio and Polish Television; a range of other awards at this festival also went to Teatroteka productions. Additionally, Teatroteka productions have been recognized by Teatr magazine as the most important new development in the field of treatre adaptations in Poland.
To further showcase the series, Documentary and Feature Film Studios, together with the Zbigniew Raszewski Theatre Institute, have established a dedicated festival, the Teatroteka Fest. Its first edition, in February, 2017, was a great success.
Between 2013 and 2017, 35 original productions were created as part of the Teatroteka series.
The Teatroteka series is co-financed by the Ministry of Culture and National Heritage.