Time Shelter

Time Shelter

Inspired by the novel by Giorgi Gospodinov, with a script by Michael Rubenfeld and Marcin Wierzchowski
Dir. Marcin Wierzchowski
Scena Kameralna
ul. Starowiślna 21
Time Shelter




3 h 30 min
1 intermission


80 zł
Regular ticket
60 zł
Discounted ticket
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In times of an uncertain future, nostalgia can become an easy escape from the challenges we are facing now. The time shelter, Georgi Gospodinov’s brilliant literary invention, is a place where the past is reconstructed: created for Alzheimer’s patients, it tries to halt the sickness and the unstoppable passage of time, bring back a moment to which the patient longs to return, where they felt safe or lived life to the full. But memory does not respect the limits we impose upon it and likes to play tricks on those who meddle with it. 

The protagonists of this stage interpretation of Gospodinov’s novel are two Polish families who, in giving Alzheimer’s sufferers in their family to a time shelter, decide to take a closer look at their family histories. The pictures, sounds, and smells bring back yearnings trapped in the past, but their seductive power is only marketing. Returning to Poland’s World Cup championship in Spain in 1982, or to the infamous year of 1968, turns out to mean confronting family tragedies and secrets that are woven into the present.

Time Shelter is a rather modest staging, yet its true power lies in its text and the emotions conveyed by the actors. The performance is not only moving, but it also invites us to reflect on whether we ourselves have our own time shelters that we escape to and idealise – for those good memories may not always align with reality. The final scene is a breathtaking tearjerker – a true masterpiece that reminded me why I fell in love with theatre all those years ago.
Kamil Pycia, e-teatr

This seemingly simple, at times even comedic performance is a motherlode of hidden meanings and moving lyricism. It effectively transports the audience to their own pasts. The brilliant, natural, and embodied performances, along with understated music, costumes, scenography, and stage movements that create a nostalgic atmosphere, deserve special recognition.
Przemysław Gulda, guldapoleca


Based on the book titled


Copyright @ 2020, Georgi Gospodinow

All rights reserved

The script is based on actors’ improvisations.

The performance uses excerpts from the Polish translation of Georgi Gospodinov’s novel “Time shelter” by Magdalena Pytlak, Wydawnictwo Literackie, Krakow 2022.


The olfactory setting of the performance:

The play is under the patronage of Onet.