Grzegorz Jarzyna, born in 1968 in Chorzów, is one of the most popular Polish theatre directors. His work has brought a major braekthrough to the Polish theatre. He graduated from the Faculty of Philosophy, Jagiellonian University in Krakow, and from the Ludwik Solski State Academy of Theatre in Krakow, where he studied directing. In 1998 he became the Artistic Director of TR Warszawa (former Teatr Rozmaitości), one of the most innovative theatres in Poland, and since 2006 - 2013 he has also been its General Director.
Jarzyna has staged classical dramas, reinterpreted in a bold and innovative way (The Tropical Craze based on Witkacy’s play, Magnetism of the Heart based on Aleksander Fredro’s Maiden Vows), adaptations of famous European novels (Doctor Faustus by Thomas Mann, The Price Myshkin based on Dostoyevsky’s The Idiot), world-famous contemporary dramas (Unidentified Human Remains by Brad Fraser, Sarah Kane’s 4.48 Psychosis staged in Warsaw and Düsseldorf), as well as operas (Prokofiev’s The Gambler in Opera de Lyon, Maurice Ravel’s The Child and The Spells and Alexander Zemlinsky’s The Dwarf in the Bavarian State Opera). He enjoys combining different genres, which is reflected in the following performances: 2008: Macbeth based on Shakespeare’s drama, movie-like adaptation which takes place on four different sets, and Giovanni based on Wolfgang A. Mozart’s Don Giovanni and Moliere’s Don Juan – performance combining theatre and opera.
Jarzyna’s international reputation has been established with invitations to various festivals and guest performances in Europe and all over the world i.a. in Avignon, Edinburgh, Moscow, St. Petersburg, Jerusalem, Berlin, Munich, Vienna, Stockholm, Paris, London, Dublin, Toronto, New York, Los Angeles, Wellington and Hongkong. In June 2008, his Macbeth was staged in New York, where a special kind of stage was built under the Brooklyn Bridge.
Jarzyna has authored plenty of adaptations, two plays: Medea Project and Areteia and two librettos for Zygmunt Krauze’s Yvonne, Princess of Burgundy and The Trap. He has also directed a few TV performances: Witkacy’s The Tropical Craze, History according to Gombrowicz and the TV version of 2008: Macbeth.
He participated in the Odyssey Europe project implemented within the framework of The European Capital of Culture RUHR.2010. In 2010, he staged Jean Racine’s Phedre in the Toneelgroep Theatre in Amsterdam. His most recent performances include T.E.O.R.E.M.A.T. based on Pier Paolo Pasolini’s work, No Matter How Hard We Tried by Dorota Masłowska, which premiered in Schaubühne am Lehniner Platz in Berlin as well as Nosferatu inspired by Bram Stoker’s Dracula.
He has received many awards and distinctions i.a. the Minister’s of Internal Affairs award for special merits to Poland in the world (2002) and the Golden Order on the occasion of the 300th anniversary of Sankt Petersburg (2004). In 2007, he was granted one of the most prestigious awards of the German-speaking Europe – the Nestroy-Preis – which he received for Medea staged in Burgtheater in Vienna (2006). In 2013, he was awarded the Knight’s Cross of the Order of Polonia Restituta by President Komorowski. He was also awarded twice the Konrad Swinarski Award for the Best Director (1999 and 2009).
Plays staged at TR Warszawa:
- The Tropical Craze, dir. Grzegorz Horst (1997)
- Magnetism of The Heart based on A. Fredro’s Maiden Vows, dir. Sylwia Torsh (1999)
- The Prince Myshkin based on Dostoyevsky’s The Idiot, dir. Mikołaj Warianow (2000)
- The Celebration (Festen), dir. H7 (2001)
- 4.48 Psychosis, dir.: + (2002)
- Risk Everything, dir.: -> (2003)
- Bash, dir. -> (2004)
- 2008: Macbeth, dir. Grzegorz Jarzyna (2005)
- Giovanni based on Mozart’s Don Giovanni and Moliere’s Don Juan, dir. Grzegorz Jarzyna (2006)
- The Lion in Winter, dir. Grzegorz Jarzyna (2007)
- T.E.O.R.E.M.A.T., dir. Grzegorz Jarzyna (2009)
- No Matter How Hard We Tried, dir. Grzegorz Jarzyna (2009)
- Areteia, dir. Grzegorz Jarzyna (2010)
- Nosferatu, dir. Grzegorz Jarzyna (2011)
- The Second Woman, dir. Grzegorz Jarzyna (2014)
- Martyrs, dir. Grzegorz Jarzyna (2015)
- Ivona, Princess of Burgundia, dir. Grzegorz Jarzyna (2016) (Theatre of Nations, Moscow)