A Year of Everyday Life… is a performance with many subplots, exploring social emotions, customs, drives, and aspirations, shaped by an insightful look at the present social and political situation. As Joanna Targoń writes for Gazeta Wyborcza: “we find a theatrical situation that Strzępka and Demirski have accustomed us to: people cast into uncomfortable positions, time running forward, backward, and sideways, reality blending with dreams, nightmares, fantasies, and imagination, and life with the afterlife.”
Inspired by Jędrzej Kitowicz’s Description of Customs under the Rule of August III and the plays it has led to, the creators survey the socio-political landscape after 1989, asking tough questions about the character of the national and extra-national community in shifting historical circumstances. In a sharp, sardonic tone they delve into social divisions, the sources of constant conflicts within a single nation, the unrealistic aspirations of a given economic class. The stereotypes, inflated to an absurd degree, are rendered by actors who build marvelous portraits of figures from various social groups and of various interests, arriving at a bitter conclusion: “As it turns out, you can only go back to the past to look and, at best, to understand what swamp you’d like to escape from” (fragment from the play’s script).
The play begins with a brilliant monologue by Anna Dymna, who tells a folk-stylized tale of the things that divide people. Then she provides examples, though not the ones we are expecting to hear. After that, we have a whole series of scenes that include monologues delivered straight to the audience, revealing social classes and strata, their members, customs, and behavior…
Wojciech Majcherek, kultura.onet.pl.