A discussion regarding the significance of William Shakespeare for Stanisław Wyspiański, a Polish playwright, poet, artist and theatre designer, and an English-language premiere of Mr Wyspiański’s play at the London-based Shakespeare's Globe, commemorated the 150th anniversary of the Polish playwright’s birth.
The discussion, moderated by Patrick Spottiswoode, director of Globe Education at Shakespeare’s Globe, was accompanied by extracts from the “Hamlet Study” (1904) read by Globe actors.
It was followed by a premiere in English of Wyspiański's one-act play, the “Death of Ophelia” (1905), in the beautiful candle-lit Sam Wanamaker Playhouse.
The event was organised as part of the “Shakespeare and Poland” festival − two weeks of performances devoted to the role played by Shakespeare in Polish culture, including premieres, live theatre, film, illustration, music and song.
Earlier, the audience had the opportunity to attend a discussion headlined “Poland is Hamlet”, and listen to a performative reading of Jan Kochanowski’s tragedy titled “Dismissal of the Greek Envoys”.
Born in 1869 in Kraków, southern Poland, Mr Wyspiański was a Polish playwright, painter and poet, as well as interior and furniture designer. A patriotic writer, he created a series of symbolic, national dramas within the artistic philosophy of the Young Poland Movement.