Meet the Artists
Przemyslaw Wojcieszek (b. 1974) studied journalism and Polish literature but debuted as a film director with Kill Them All in 1999 and quickly became a leading representative of Polish independent cinema, opening his own distribution company in 2001 and launching a Polish counterpart of the Sundance spin-off with the annual Slamdance Poland for independent and fringe filmmakers. His feature film Louder Than Bombs was presented at the 2002 International Film Festival in Mannheim-Heidelberg and was honored at the Slamdance Film Festival (Park City, UT). His third movie, The Perfect Afternoon, shown at the Forum of the Berlinale 2006, was also honored at the Love Screens Film Festival in Verona (Italy) and the New York Polish Film Festival. In 2004 Wojcieszek was named Best Director at the Polish Film Festival in Gdynia for Down the Colorful Hill. The author of his own screenplays, Wojcieszek won the prestigious 2005 Polityka Passport award in film, honored by the weekly magazine for “his unconventional work as a manifesto of those born in the 1970s who are trying to find a place for themselves in today’s reality”. But in 2004 he had already begun working in theater, exploring themes of tolerance, personal identity, and being Polish. Made in Poland, about a rebellious young man from the outer-city housing projects, marked Wojcieszek’s debut both as playwright and as theatrical director at the Modjeska Theatre in Legnica. An absolute hit with audiences and critics alike, the play was regarded by theater critics as the best in Poland in the 2004/2005 season. Wojcieszek then directed 3 hits in Warsaw – Whatever Happens, I Love You and Darkroom, his own plays, and Dorota Maslowska’s A Couple of Poor Polish-Speaking Romanians – before returning to Legnica as author and director of Personal Jesus in 2006. His newest production, I Am the Resurrection, was staged in the Dramatyczny Theatre in Walbrzych in 2007.
Przemyslaw Wojcieszek is one of Poland’s emerging playwrights, screenwriters, and directors. Made in Poland, about a rebellious young man from the outer-city housing projects, marked Wojcieszek’s debut both as playwright and as theatrical director at the Modjeska Theatre in Legnica. An absolute hit with audiences and critics alike, the play was regarded by theater critics as the best in Poland in the 2004/2005 season. Wojcieszek picked out a very Polish subject – the struggles of young people in the small towns of a new, post-communist reality – and presented it in the form of the radical theatre of everyday communication and discussion, in a region where the conditions for the creation of works of art was not a top priority. For Wojcieszek, theatrical art only has real value, when it is the vehicle for a social message. This is a novelty in Polish theatre. In his plays Wojcieszek always chooses subjects which are the most topical and at the same time controversial in Poland today: intolerance, stereotypes, post communist traumas, homophobia, etc.
Jackson Gay (Director) Recent: Len, Asleep in Vinyl, by Carly Mensch, at Second Stage. Jason Grote’s Box Americana (Eugene O’Neill Playwright’s Conference); Workshop of Saviana Stanescu’s For a Barbarian Woman (Long Wharf / International Festival of Arts & Ideas); Andy Bragen’s Mother Earth (Minneapolis’ PlayLabs); A collaboration with Jennifer Tipton at the Guggenheim Museum as part of Works & Process. Workshop presentation of David Adjmi’s Marie Antoinette for the inaugural Sundance Institute Theatre Lab in Residence at the Public Theater, as well as Portland Center Stage’s JAW/West Festival. Lucy Thurber’s Scarcity at the Atlantic Theater Company, where she previously directed Kia Corthron’s Master Disaster (10x20 Festival) and Rolin Jones’ The Intelligent Design of Jenny Chow, which was selected as a 2006 Pulitzer Prize finalist. Lucy Thurber’s Stay (Rattlestick Theater) Esinencu’s Fuck You, Eu.ro.Pa! (Play Company) Best Production Connecticut Critic’s Award The Intelligent Design of Jenny Chow at the Yale Rep. Upcoming: Workshop presentation of David Adjmi’s Marie Antoinette (Goodman Theater); Fabulation, by Lynn Nottage (Baltimore Centerstage); A Year With Frog and Toad (Two River Theater); End Days, by Deborah Zoe Laufer (People’s Light and Theater Company).Founder of the film production company YARN, whose upcoming projects include Sugar Land, by Lucy Thurber. Recipient of the Jonathan Alper Directing Fellowship at Manhattan Theatre Club, the Williamstown Theater Festival Directing Fellowship and the Drama League's New Directors/New Works Fellowship. MFA Directing Yale School of Drama.
Alissa Valles (Translator) was born into an English-speaking family in Amsterdam, the Netherlands, and studied at the School of Slavonic & East European Studies in London and in Poland, Russia and the U.S. She worked for the BBC, the Jewish Historical Insitute and La Strada International in Warsaw, and now works as a writer, editor and translator in the Bay Area. She has contributed to Documentary Theater on the World Stage (Palgrave Macmillan, 2008) and The New European Poets (Graywolf, 2008) and acted as an editor for Words Without Borders. Her poems and translations have appeared in The New Yorker, The New York Review of Books, Ploughshares, The Iowa Review, Verse and elsewhere. She is the editor and co-translator of Zbigniew Herbert’s Collected Poems 1956-1998 (Ecco), a New York Times Book Review Notabale Book of the Year in 2007. Her poetry collection Orphan Fire is published by Four Way Books (2008).
Rob Campbell (Actor) The Physicists with Roger Rees (Williamstown Theatre Festival). Upcoming: premiere of Theresa Rebek’s Our House (Denver Theatre Center). Broadway: Translations, Ivanov. Off-Broadway and regional credits include: Small Tragedy (Obie Award, Lortel nomination), The Treatment, As You Like It, King Lear, Him, In The Blood, 365 Plays/365 Days (NYSF), The Illusion, Living Room In Africa, Hour of the Lynx, Mad Forest (Drama Desk nomination), The Beard of Avon, The Cocktail Hour, Aphrodisiac, Gone Home, The Seagull, Mojo, Wasp, Tough, Hamlet (title role), The Glass Menagerie, The Orphan of Zhao, Snow In June, Ark & The Covenant (London). 10 seasons with the O’Neill Playwrights Conference. Film and TV: “Unforgiven”, “The Crucible”, “Boys Don’t Cry”, “Hedwig & the Angry Inch”, “Ethan Frome”, “The Stars Fell On Henrietta”, “Hostile Waters”, “Liberty”, “Snow Days”, “Normandie”, “The Wonder Boys”, “Lone Justice”, “The Photographer”, “City of Ghosts”, “Dark Matter”, “Criminal Intent”, “Sex & the City”, “Law & Order”, “Hope & Faith”, “NY Undercover”, “Ned Blessing”, “Brotherhood”.
Ed Vassallo (Actor) Monsieur Ibrahim and the Flowers of the Koran. Broadway: Awake and Sing. Off-Broadway: Havana is Waiting, Streetcar Named Desire, Tale of 2 Cities. Television: 5th season on Soprano's (Tom Giglione), “Sex and the City”, all “Law and Orders”, “Six Degrees”. Film: War of the Worlds, Roberta, Exiles in New York.
Ola Maslik (Set Designer) based in NYC working on American and international stages. Ola is originally from Poland where she studied at the Academy of fine art and received her MFA in Graphic Design.She moved to theater through puppets design. In 2006 she received and additional MFA from Yale School of Drama.Her work is a combination of fine arts, puppetry and stage design which make her work unique.Her selected recent work you can see at the Guggenheim Museum, TwoRiver Theatre in NJ, Milwaukee Shakespeare, Play & Co., Poland, as well film and television.
Jessica Ford (Costume Designer) Regional credits include the Long Wharf Theatre, Syracuse Stage, YaleRep, Barrington Stage, Two River Theatre, Milwaukee Shakespeare, Shakespeare and Company. At this year's Humana Festival of New American Plays, Jessica designed Becky Shaw, The Break/s, and Neighborhood 3: Requisition of Doom. In New York: Rattlestick Playwrights Theatre, Second Stage Uptown, Pearl Theatre, Access Theatre, NY Fringe, Summer Play Festival.Jessica is a 2007-09 recipient of the NEA/TCG fellowship forDesigners. She received her MFA from Yale School of Drama and is an adjunct faculty member at Maryland Institute.
Matthew Richards (Lighting Designer) Play Company: Invasion!, Made in Poland. Broadway: Ann. Recent Off-Broadway: The Absolute Brightness of Leonard Pelkey (Westside Arts), Informed Consent (Primary Stages), Verite (Lincoln Center 3), Tamburlaine, and The killer (Theatre For A New Audience), Atlantic Theater Co., Brooklyn Academy of Music, MCC, Rattlestick, Playwrights horizons. Regional credits include: Actors Theater of Louisville, Arena Stage, Baltimore Center Stage, Cincinnati Playhouse, Cleveland Playhouse, Dallas Theater Center, Ford’s Theatre, The Goodman, The Guthrie, Hartford Stage, The Huntington, La Jolla Playhouse, Long Wharf, New York Stage and Film, The Old Globe, Shakespeare Theatre, Westport Playhouse.
Bart Fasbender (Sound Design) Recent/current designs: Slag Heap, Women on Fire and 2003 – 2005 Mentor Projects at Cherry Lane; Boozy at The Culture Project (previously at The Ohio); Reasons for Return at Symphony Space and Are We Here Yet at Tribeca PAC for MoCo; Barbara Bush Never Slept Here, Gheri Dosti and William Hoffman's Shoe Palace Murray at Bernie West Theatre for Circle East; Trust at The Kirk and Sakharam Binder at 59E59 for The Play Company; Legal Snarls, Mark Medoff's Same Life Over and Lakawana Rails Radio Plays for TNT in PA, Pen Pals, Elizabeth Forsythe Hailey's Woman of Independent Means and Joanna's Husband and David's Wife at PPT in VA.
Trisha Henson (Stage Manager) she/her Broadway: West Side Story (2020 revival), Hamilton, Dear Evan Hansen, Orphans, Soul Doctor, The Road to Mecca, Harvey. Nat’l Tours: Aladdin, Book of Mormon, Once. Off-B’way: Dot, Nevermore, Tail!Spin!, Water by the Spoonful, Natasha, Pierre and The Great Comet of 1812, The Tribute Artist, The Divine Sister, Stu for Silverton (Workshop), Afterwords (Workshop) All my love to Becca, Odie and Harper
This production was part of the MADE IN POLAND Festival, presented by 59E59 Theaters and the Polish Cultural Institute, New York.
“Made in Poland is a compelling comic portrait of one man’s vision of his people and their passions.”
“Gay’s work may have fewer pyrotechnics than that of some of her contemporaries, but she has utterly mastered the finicky art of lucidly staging an ambiguous new play.”
Jayce Bartok Rob Campbell Jonathan Clem Eva Kaminsky Ryan O’Nan Ed Vassallo Kit Williamson Karen Young Natalia Zvereva
Production Stage Manager
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