Grzegorz Laszuk: “Hannah Arendt: Escape Room”

Director: Grzegorz Laszuk
Music: Bartek Rączkowski
Choreography: Renata Piotrowska-Auffret
Video: Adrian Cognac
Costumes: Ewelina Ciuchta
Scenography: Piotr Szczygielski
Lights: Karolina Gębska
Cast: Anna Wojnarowska, Małgorzata Goździk, Michał Lacheta, Arkadiusz Wójcik
Cooperation: Paweł Mościcki

The performance imagines a meeting of a tight-knit group of people at a special moment in history.. Hannah Arendt, Martin Heidegger, Karl Jaspers and Walter Benjamin – each of them faced a test of moral responsibility and/ or the desperate need to find a way of escape.
Hannah Arendt – German Jewish philosopher. A student of totalitarianism, she flees Germany after the Nazis comes to power in 1933. She escapes occupied France for the US at the last minute. She survives.
Walter Benjamin – German Jewish philosopher. He flees Germany for France in 1933. He commits suicide during an attempted escape from France in 1940.
Karl Jaspers – German philosopher. He withdraws from public life following the Nazi seizure of power. He survives.
Martin Heidegger – German philosopher. In 1933 he welcomes Nazi government with enthusiasm, is appointed rector of the University of Freiburg and delivers a flowery speech on the rebirth of the German nation under Hitler’s leadership. Having resigned his post after a year, he moves to the sidelines of academic life but continues to pay NSDAP membership dues until 1945. He never apologises for his actions. He survives.
The performance describes methods of survival. According to naturalists, the struggle for survival is the only way of life known to organisms of most species.
How does that relate to mankind? Should one choose be to active or passive?
Risk the uncertainty of escape or choose the transient safety of staying?
Each character of the performance chose a different mode of survival. What have they got to say about their experience and their choices when locked in an escape room?

Coproduction of Teatr Powszechny w Łodzi and Komuna//Warszawa

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