The Copernicus Program in Polish Studies (CPPS) and School of Music, Theatre and Dance at the University of Michigan are pleased to announce the upcoming residency of Theatre of the Eighth Day (Teatr Ósmego Dnia), a company from Poznań, Poland, recognized as a leader among Polish alternative theatres. While on campus, Theatre of the Eighth Day will deliver three performances of their recent work “The Files,” created after the company gained access to their own secret police surveillance files, released after the fall of the Soviet satellite regime in Poland. Ewa Wójciak, actor and director of the company, will deliver the 2016 Annual Copernicus Lecture “Breaking Boundaries before and after Censorship: A Personal Story of When and How You Should Say No.”

Theatre of the Eighth Day was founded in 1964 and soon became one of the most significant alternative student theatre troupes in Poland. Its name derives from the Polish poet K.I. Gałczyński, who wrote that “On the seventh day, the Lord God rested, and on the eighth, He created theatre.” For 25 years, and despite constant surveillance by the secret police and government censorship, Theatre of the Eighth Day managed to create some of the most important works for the Polish stage.

The residency is part of a semester-long focus at CPPS on Polish theatre. In February, CPPS hosted two additional public lectures. Courses offered by the Department of Slavic Languages and Literatures and the Department of Theatre and Drama engaged speakers from the series and will host Theatre of the Eighth Day as part of their coursework.

Malcolm Tulip, assistant professor of theatre at U-M and instructor of the theatre course says, “We are delighted to host the residency of Teatr Ósmego Dnia. This is a wonderful opportunity for our students to encounter a group of artists for whom theatre has been a necessity, inseparable from the life of their community, and which provides a vital outlet for addressing contemporary political, social, and deeply personal issues. We expect exposure to theatre practice that is far from the Broadway model will widen students’ understanding of what theatre can be.”


Thu, Mar 17, 7 pm
Fri, Mar 18, 6 pm and 8 pm

Performances. Theatre of the Eighth Day (Teatr Ósmego Dnia) performs The Files (Teczki). Residency co-sponsors: U-M’s Department of Theatre & Drama, Penny W. Stamps School of Art & Design, Third Century Initiative; Culture.pl. Video Studio, Room 1356, Duderstadt Center, 2281 Bonisteel.

Mon, Mar 21, 5:30-7 pm
Annual Copernicus Lecture. 
“Breaking Boundaries before and after Censorship: A Personal Story of When and How You Should Say No.” Ewa Wójciak, actor and director, Theatre of the Eighth Day. Co-sponsors: U-M’s Department of Theatre & Drama, Penny W. Stamps School of Art & Design; Culture.pl. Stamps Auditorium, Walgreen Drama Center, 1226 Murfin.​

Contact: Marysia Ostafin / T: 734.764.0351 / E: copernicus@umich.edu