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Biennale Teatro 2017

Maja Kleczewska

Silver Lion 


Tuesday July 25th
Sala delle Colonne (Ca' Giustinian, Venice) 
3:00 pm


The Silver Lion for innovation in theatre has been awarded to Polish director Maja Kleczewska.

Just over forty years old, Maja Kleczewska is perhaps the leading director in Polish theatre, by the side of artists such as Krysztof Warlikowski, for whom she served as assistant, and Krystian Lupa, each of them the custodians of a great tradition whose most famous exponents include Kantor and Grotowski. Kleczewska's works, which have been produced by important institutions abroad such as the Deutsches Schauspielhaus in Hamburg, are distinguished by the convergence between the burning contemporary issues she addresses and her brilliant work with the actors, from whom she demands exception emotional involvement. Her research is sustained by her choice of authors such as the Nobel prize-winner Elfriede Jelinek and Sarah Kane, and shines a powerful light on the issues regarding women, within a context in which the decline of capitalism, with its religious and nationalistic deviations, while promising new freedom in fact risks reducing women to their powerless status of old. Her most recent projects as a director go in this direction, provoking heated debate and conflicting reactions, proving to be courageous and controversial, and as such, urgent and necessary.


Maja Kleczewska (Warsaw, 1973) – She studied psychology at the University of Warsaw and at the Theatre Academy, graduating in direction at the school of the National Theatre in Krakow. She has worked in many theatres, such as the National Theatre in Krakow (Phèdre from Euripides, Marat/Sade by Peter Weiss, Oresteia by Aeschylus), the Polish Theatre in Bydgoszcz (Platonov by Chekhov, BabelWinter Journey and Shadows (Eurydice speaks) by Elfriede Jelinek, The Tempest by Shakespeare), the DeutschesSchauSpielHaus in Hamburg (The TempestWaiting for the Barbarians by J.M. Coetzee). Her most recent works include Dybuk by Anski and The Rage by E. Jelinek.

She has won many awards, including Konrad's Laurel in Katowice, the 2006 Passport award from the weekly magazine "Polityka" for "the intransigent, but wise new interpretation of the classics that represents the destruction of contemporary man, and for her rich and inventive imagination that allows her to recreate fascinating worlds on stage". In addition to the many acknowledgments she has received, her plays have been performed in many festivals in Poland and abroad.

Biennale Teatro
Biennale Teatro