Passing Away
The Annex
February 16 - March 5, 2006
Thursday - Saturday 7:30pm
Sunday - 2:30pm & 7:30pm
Tickets $20

Scena Plastyczna KUL
Directed by Leszek Madzik

Box office 212.475.7710

Poland's renowned Scena Plastyczna KUL's ODCHODZI (PASSING AWAY) -- created and directed by the highly acclaimed visual theatre artist Leszek Madzik from text by famed author Tadeusz Rozewicz -- will be given its New York premiere by La Mama ETC in association with the Polish Cultural Institute in New York.

ODCHODZI -- set to a score of live scat singing, sung by Polish jazz legend Urszula Dudziak, and performed by actors who don't speak a single word -- uses shadow and light accompanied by haunting, original music and movement to convey emotions and existential truths inadequately expressed in words.

Adapted by Madzik from Tadeusz Rozewicz's award-winning book of prose and verse, "Matka Odchodzi (Mother Departs)" -- winner of NIKE, Poland's highest literary award in 2000 -- ODCHODZI (PASSING AWAY) is a visual spectacle that examines the solitude and mystery of a loved one's passing.

The production features original music by Marek Kuczynski, with vocals by Urszula Dudziak. The cast includes Janusz Buchoski, Przemyslaw Dudek, Jaroslaw Figura, Liwia Madzik, Monika Michalowicz, Justyna Niezgoda, Tomasz Pluta, Tomasz Wentland, Bartlomiej Witek and Tomasz Zoltak.

Located in the Polish city of Lublin, Leszek Madzik and his Scene Plastyczna KUL have created 17 spectacle productions -- including ECCE HOMO, ICARUS, STIGMA (based on "The Seventh Seal" by Ingmar Bergman) and SHROUD -- that have been performed world wide since the theatre company was formed in 1969. Refining his personal vision of theatre as a place without words, Madzik has established himself as Poland's master of a uniquely visual and deeply spiritual theatre experience. While Madzik and Scena Plastyczna are virtually unknown in the U.S., critics worldwide have attested to the extraordinary effect of Madzik's productions and widely regard PASSING AWAY as his most powerful work to date.
Poet, playwright and novelist Tadeusz Rozewicz is perhaps one of the pre-eminent living writers in the world today and is unanimously listed among the greatest Polish authors of the 20th Century. His plays -- including BITE THE DUST and THE OLD WOMAN BROODS set for their New York premieres with the Polish Cultural Institute in 2006 and 2007 -- are constantly presented in Poland's best theater, but he remains barely known in the United States.

Renowned singer Urszula Dudziak, a former Los Angeles Times "Jazz Singer of the Year" award recipient, is internationally recognized as a master jazz scatter. A resident of New York City in the 1970s and 80s, and now living in her native Poland, Dudziak has previously collaborated with such musical luminaries as Dizzy Gillespie, Bobby McFerrin, Herbie Hancock, Wynton and Bradford Marsalis, Lionel Hampton and Sting.

"I could burrow through half a dozen dictionaries and still not find the words to describe theatremaker Leszek Madzik and his company Scena Plastyczna: Madzik's work is breathtaking." -- Justin Hayford, Chicago Reader

"Leszek Madzik has created an epitaph for a beloved one, written with the beautiful, radiant language of black and white images and the voice of Urszula Dudziak. The spectacle is shocking and movingly beautiful." -- Echo Dnia

The NY-based Polish Cultural Institute is dedicated to promoting and nurturing cultural ties between the US and Poland. During the Polish Cultural Institute's first three years, its consistently sold-out productions have grown in scope from the 50-seat Knitting Factory to the 2000-seat Carnegie Hall. It has collaborated with cultural institutions including La MaMa, Art at St. Ann's, Lincoln Center, BAM, Collective Unconscious, and MoMA. Previous productions include the recent SAINT OEDIPUS, a critically acclaimed adaptation of Gombrowicz's satirical novel FERDYDURKE, Slawomir Mrozek's OUT AT SEA & STRIPTEASE and SERENADE & PHILOSOPHER FOX; DYBUK directed by Krzystof Warlikowski at BAM Next Wave Festival; RISK EVERYTHING directed by Grzegorz Jarzyna at Art at St. Ann's; and THREE SISTERS directed by Krystian Lupa at the American Repertory Theatre (Cambridge, MA); plus a spectacular four-night performance under the Brooklyn Bridge of the street-theatre classic CARMEN FUNEBRE.

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