A city where poetry never sleeps | Miłosz Festival

A city where poetry never sleeps

The 6th edition of Poetry Night, titled “Krakow in Poetry: City, Mass, Machine” will take place again as part of the Krakow Nights cycle and this year it will last for almost a whole day. Lovers of poetry will have many attractions to take advantage of in various parts of the city: poetic meetings, workshops, presentations, theatre forms, poetic concerts and book promotions. The Poetry Night, organised by the Department of Culture and National Heritage of Krakow Municipal Office will accompany the Miłosz Festival for the first time.


This year’s theme was inspired by two important anniversaries – the 125th birthday of Tadeusz Peiper and 115th birthday of Julian Przyboś. Their creations provided a strong impulse for reflections upon both the role of poetry in the life of a city and its residents, as well as innovation in art. This is why the manifesto of the Krakow Avant-garde – City. Mass. Machine. – created by its leader, Tadeusz Peiper, published in 1922 in Zwrotnica magazine, will be the starting point for all discussions during the Poetry Night. That is also how Poetry Night came to be, composed of many small projects, performed in various locations in the city.


The participants will be able to begin their encounter with poetry at 8:00 a.m. During the Beautiful Morning, Zenon Fajfer, the renowned creator of “liberature” – poetry that emphasises not only the meaning, but also the material aspect of the word – will read his poems on a bench between Wawel Castle and the Museum of Archaeology. At noon, the Literary Salon of the Polish Writers’ Association will host the Poets with Character. The meeting will be hosted by Michał Zabłocki; however, the discussion will be focused on the women: Ewa Elżbieta Nowakowska, Alicja Baluch, Kinga Olewicz and many other artists. Also at noon, Zenon Fajfer will showcase his poetic performance, Liberty Poem at the Main Square. The performance has been shown in New York, Chicago, Taipei, Tokyo, Vienna, Bucharest, Venice and Brussels.


At 1:00 p.m., Chórtownia (Poemat Foundation) and PASSIONART choir will perform the Sielanki Komediowe concert with poems by Michał Zabłocki at Pałac Pod Baranami. At the same time, the Krakow Philharmonic will host the Dance with Figures for children, prepared by the Cracovia Danza Court Ballet. Then, the stage will be taken by The Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe by Ballet Excelsior Houston. At 3:00 p.m. the Public Library in Nowa Huta will host Tomasz Schimcheiner, who will read poems about Krakow – the city of literature, poetry and poets. Just 15 minutes later, Jerzy Kronhold will start his deliberations on the role of artists in urban life, and at 3:30 p.m. Agnieszka Mirahina, Marta Podgórnik, Tadeusz Pióro and Robert Rybicki will read their poems at Teatr Nowy.


The Enchanted Carriage will come to the Bonarka City Center – the poem by K.I. Gałczyński will be presented by Andrzej Rog, and the dance of the green geese will be performed by the K.I. Gałczyński MDK Ballet Group, accompanied by the Porfirion Independent Theatre Group. The retail space will sound with poems by local poets about the magic of the city. At 5:00 p.m., at Podgórze Public Library, a poetic wash will take place, connected with reading of poems by Tadeusz Peiper, Adam Ważyk, Jalu Kurek and others. At 5:15 p.m., the Wielkopolski Palace will host Poetry in Krakow and the Meeting with Poems, during which Marcin Baran, Leszek Aleksander Moczulski and Ryszard Krynicki will read poems written by themselves, as well as local authors.


At 6:00 p.m. the Ha!Art Corporation will start a Struggle for Breath at Zakrzówek. Referring to the concept created by Różewicz, saying that “poetry is a struggle for breath”, several authors will read their poems on nature during the open-air meeting, and then it will be the audience’s turn to speak. The meeting will be conducted by Maja Staśko and Piotr Puldzian Płucienniczak. The city centre will then become a stage for Peregrinus – a wandering play by KTO Theatre, starting at Rynek Główny 34.


A play by Ziuta Zającówna titled Nowe Usta. Teatr burmistrza marzeń niezamieszkanych / New Lips. A theatre of the mayor of uninhabited dreams – a collage of Peiper’s poems, which will start at 7:00 p.m. at the Dependent Theatre will directly refer to the poet’s creations. After the play, a meeting with Prof. Jarosław Fazan, the author of From metaphor to delusion. A patography of Tadeusz Peiper will take place. At the same time, the Poetry Night will also begin at the theatre near the J. Babiński Specialist Hospital, where the actors will read the patients’ poems in the Zawirowani / Turbulent spectacle, and their artistic works will be displayed on the walls.


The One Poem Tournament will be concluded at 8:00 p.m. at Klub Pod Jaszczurami. This exceptional competition is a return to the 50-year long tradition – the competition was won by Julian Kornhauser, Adam Zagajewski and Marcin Baran, among others. At the same hour, the Mumerus Theatre invites everyone to an open-air/underground play/happening/amballage, inspired by interwar catastrophic avant-garde poetry. It is going to be a one-in-a-kind trip in the footsteps of texts, to the underground realm of an old prison and monastery (today the Museum of Archaeology in Krakow at Senacka 3) The project name – WPOPSZEK (dir. Wiesław Hołdys) is a reference to the poem by Jerzy Jankowski, „Tram wpopszek ulicy”.


At 10:30 p.m. a special meeting as part of the Anna Dymna Krakow Poetry Salon series The trees of Kazimierz will take us to the streets of the historic district, even though we will – as always – meet at the Słowacki Theatre. Apart from the traditional Jewish poems we are also going to hear poems by Jacek Cygan and Leopold Kozłowski – the last Galician klezmer. Free passes for the event can be obtained from the 9th of June at the theatre’s box office.


The programme also comprises a concert of songs to the poems by Jan Twardowski, performed by Krzysztof Napiórkowski (Loża ZASP Club), Lidia Jazgar’s anniversary concert with Galicja, a concert of songs by Andrzej Zarycki to the texts by Agnieszka Grochowicz (Watching the Clouds) and Jaga Wrońska’s concert.


However, this is not all – many more events will take place during the Poetry Night, organised by the Department of Culture and National Heritage of the Krakow Municipal Office and Krakow UNESCO City of Literature. The full programme can be found at: http://www.krakowskienoce.pl/noc_poezji/200464,0,1,program.html. The Krakow Festival Office and the City of Literature Foundation, organisers of the 5th Miłosz Festival “Road-side dog” invite to join the event!

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