In the world of nationalists, the interests of the state take precedence over one’s own interests.

  • Marszałkowska 8
  • Special event

Being a Nationalist (Būt nacionālistam) – performance and meeting

Buy a ticket
  • Director

    Valters Sīlis

  • Production

     Dirty Deal Teatro, Ryga (Latvia)

  • Duration

    2 h 15 min.

  • Tickets

    regular 50 zł
    concessionery 30 zł

  • Language

    ENG and PL, with PL subtitles

Meeting with creators

After the performance, around 10:15 pm, there will be a meeting with the creators of the play, Valters Sīlis (director) and Matīss Gricmanis (dramaturge).

We invite you to the Kawałyk Sztuki Cafe.

Admission free.


playwright: Matīss Gricmanis
director: Valters Sīlis
set designer: Uģis Bērziņs
light designer: Lauris Johansons
original cast: Jānis Kronis, Āris Matesovičs, Ance Strazda

warsaw cast: Jan Dravnel, Monika Frajczyk, Mateusz Górski
light designer (Warsaw version): Andris Landaus

About performance

This is a story of how the play’s author – Matīss Gricmanis started to work as an assistant to a well-known nationalist representative in the Latvian parliament and what led him to such decision.

In the world of nationalists, the interests of the state take precedence over one’s own interests. Friends are the people who think similarly, and are not interested in everyday problems or worldly possessions. There are many enemies, but they are well known. Real values that lost their recognition in this modern, materialistic world, will rise again. Real patriots should not obey the government that surrenders to various international organizations. To live a world that is full of challenges, one must first wake up himself/herself and then wake the Latvian nation.

As part of the Baltic Transfer * Festival, we present a special, performative version of the performance with the participation of Matīss Gricmanis and actors from the TR Warszawa company: Jan Dravnel, Monika Frajczyk and Mateusz Górski.

photos: Aivars Ivbulis

Valters Sīlis is one of the most active Latvian directors, working both on the big stage of the National Theatre and in small independent venues. He takes a particular interest in the recent history of Latvia, addressing painful and controversial socio-political issues from the perspective of the young generation. Together with dramaturg Jānis Balodis they have investigated and devised engaging and critical performances about the Latvian presidential institution after the fall of Soviet Union (“All My Presidents”), the rise of Latvian economy in 2008-2010 (“Success Story”), environmental pollution (“Mārupīte”), the Latvian national development plan (“NAP”) and the rise and fall of one of the most popular Latvian rock bands from the 1990s (“Under Two Flags”). 

The director’s inquisitive, informal and honest attitude is also visible in his latest works that put greater focus on micro-stories and choices of individuals, often young people, in specific contexts (“Being a Nationalist”, 2017, “Boy Who Saw in The Darkness”, “Based on a Book”, 2019), turning gaze also to himself at the biographical piece “Looks Like You’re Going To Die” (2020), co-created with artist Kate Krolle.

Matīss Gricmanis writes for theatre  and more extensively for screen. He takes interest in the past and  often looks back in history for answers that would help individuals and communities to understand themselves and their choices. ‘’Being Nationalist” was Matīss’ first piece for theatre where he also was a performer.  His work includes screenplays for award-winning films ‘’The Mover’’ (2018),  ‘’Jelgava ’94” (2019), TV mini series ‘’Red Forest’’ (2019) and most lately for theatre piece “Dubliners on Miera street” (2021) at New Riga Theatre.