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DO DNA [TO THE BOTTOM] / dir. Ewa Kaim (Poland)

Events at the festival:

08.07.2018 20:00
AST National Academy of Theatre Arts in Krakow, 22 F. Straszewskiego St.
08.07.2018 17:00
AST National Academy of Theatre Arts in Krakow, 22 F. Straszewskiego St.

Events at the festival:

The diploma performance of the 4th year vocal and acting specialisation students of the Faculty of Acting at the AST National Academy of Theatre Arts in Krakow, directed by Ewa Kaim, turned out to be one of the most acclaimed Polish theatre productions of the last season.
Its main theme is song as the primal form of expression, which marks out our organic pulse, stretched across both day and night, love and death, the rhythm of nature and annual customs.


starring: Dominika Guzek, Agnieszka Kościelniak, Weronika Kowalska, Jan Marczewski, Łukasz Szczepanowski and Dawid Sulej Rudnicki (piano, basolia)


directing, screenplay and pedagogical supervision: Ewa Kaim

dramaturgy: Włodzimierz Szturc

stage design, costumes, projections and lighting: Mirek Kaczmarek

music direction and arrangements: Dawid Sulej Rudnicki

choreography: Maćko Prusak / vocal preparation: Justyna Motylska

assistant director: Natalia Orkisz


The lyrics and music come from the collections of Oskar Kolberg and Father Władysław Skierkowski (The Kurpie Forest in Song, Pt. 2) and from The Kurpie Songbook, edited by Henryk Gadomski.

The creators and producers of the performance wish to warmly thank all those performers who keep folk songs close and thanks to whom the continuity of the great tradition of Polish singing is preserved. We want to show particular gratitude to: Józefa Albiniak, Czesława Borek, Stanisław Fijałkowski, the Kapela Bukowianie band, the Kapela ze Wsi Warszawa band, Helena Giloszek, Anna Kiełbusiewicz, Apolonia Nowak, Justyna Piernik, Joanna Słowińska and the Muzykanci, as well as Adam Strug.


The song has always resulted from the deep need to find the source of power and mystery. We want to check whether the need for singing and the need for songs have really faded away. Do we still have the primal power to return to the sources from which the voice emerges? Apart from the chaos of small, but also empty and often aggressive sounds of everyday life in which we live, we want to find the true voices and tones of existence. By singing, we want to find out whether it is still possible to travel to a deeply hidden archaic world. To the springs that are quietly drying out.

By giving our performance the title DO DNA [TO THE BOTTOM] we have defined the space for finding sounds and rhythms towards which we are heading. We extract them from Polish folk songs, original songs. They are based on various phonemes of archaic sounds, ancient tones and melodies. They create a music of emotions expressed in extreme situations: death, birth, marriage and parting, as well as in states of erotic desire and fear of war and annihilation. The extreme sounds permeate all elements: water, fire, air and earth, and they are expressed by the instrument of the body.

In order to bring out the primal voice, one has to go towards the bottom. One needs to recall the seemingly simple rhythmic and melodic arrangements discovered by Chopin and Szymanowski, to expose the archaic tones and sounds by reaching the sources of singing, such as Lutosławski, Karłowicz and Górecki. One has to listen to how much of the pain and anxiety we all know there is in folk song, how much attraction and repulsion, love and hatred, how much magic, how many warnings, how much despair and joy. One has to find the song’s DNA within it. That is the goal we are journeying towards.

Włodzimierz Szturc



The premiere of the performance took place on the 12th of November 2016, on the Stanisław Wyspiański Stage of the AST National Academy of Theatre Arts in Krakow.


·      The performance received the Ludwik Krakow theatre awards in 2016 in three categories:
// best performance
// best director: Ewa Kaim
// best male partner role: Łukasz Szczepanowski


·      The spectacle was awarded the Radio Krakow Mark in February 2017


·      Weronika Kowalska received the MARTA AWARD for best female role at the 27th International Festival of Theatre Schools SETKÁNÍ/ENCOUNTER in Brno


·      Grand Prix and the ensemble award for DO DNA at the 35th Festival of Theatre Schools in Łódź


·      Ewa Kaim received the Stanisław Wyspiański Award, established by the City Council of Krakow 
and the Mayor of the City of Krakow, for directing the spectacle


·      Ensemble award, award for leading role for Weronika Kowalska, and the audience award at the 9th International Festival of Theatre Schools ITSelF in Warsaw


·      Ensemble award, the ZASP “Ale Aktor!” award for Weronika Kowalska, and the audience award at the 21st TALIA National Comedy Festival in Tarnów


·      Cyclica Special Award for Weronika Kowalska at the 58th Kalisz Theatre Meetings



AST National Academy of Theatre Arts in Krakow

F. Straszewskiego 22, 30-001 Krakow

Stanisław Wyspiański Stage


8 July, 5 p.m.

8 July, 8 p.m.


Tickets can be booked in person, by telephone or via the Internet at the AST Theatre and Promotion Organisation Department (Straszewskiego 22 in Krakow)
Monday to Friday from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. 
Phone: 12 430 15 92, bilety@ast.krakow.pl.