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Danuta W.

“Danuta W.”, a well-known monodrama by Krystyna Janda, based on the best-selling book written by Danuta Wałęsa, will add splendour to the 11th edition of the Tofifest IFF. This stage performance will have a special guest — Danuta Wałęsa , who is the protagonist portrayed in this play. This way, Tofifest, which has been particularly focused on promoting women for many years, will pay tribute to a heroine of Polish contemporary history.

“It was the most difficult experience in my entire professional career,” said Krystyna Janda, following the premiere of Danuta W. This stage performance has been based on the best-selling autobiography of Danuta Wałęsa, published under the title Dreams and Secrets. Directly after its publication, Krzysztof Materna was quoted to have said about Danuta Wałęsa: “You are the greatest rally in Poland.” The performance has met with a very emotional reception. It includes critics, who are usually very lukewarm in their opinions. “It is the most political of Janda’s performances yet”, wrote Roman Pawlowski from “Gazeta Wyborcza” Daily, and added: “This is a political performance on Janda’s part, as it lets women excluded from history have their say.”

When building her character, Janda decided not to pretend to be somebody else. “I have stripped the story of Danuta Wałęsa of all decorations. I choose each word very carefully. I believe it is a material for an ancient Greek drama,” she said in one of her interviews. Therefore, Janda does not play Danuta Wałęsa on stage, she does not pretend to be a simple girl, who comes to Gdańsk from a godforsaken village and becomes a mother of eight children. Instead, Janda plays herself, i.e. a great actress from Warsaw, who walks in high heels in state-of-the-art kitchen. However, she still remembers the sentence which motivated the stage adaptation (prepared in cooperation with Janusz Zaorski) of this over 500-page book: “There would be no Lech Wałęsa, if it had not been for the sacrifices and strength of Danuta Wałęsa.”

“Danuta Wałęsa has broken the monopoly of men to tell their stories, and in Krystyna Janda’s performance we hear the voice of a woman, who is looking at the Polish revolution, from her own perspective,” said critics. TOFIFEST joins in the campaign to break the monopoly of telling stories from the perspective of men. Krystyna Janda is a historic figure for the Polish cinema, and she will perform on Tofifest’s stage to tell a story about Danuta Wałęsa, a historic figure in the history of Poland. We will have Lech Wałęsa in cinemas and Danuta Wałęsa on stage, during Tofifest.

We would like to invite you to this performance, which will take place on 26th October, 2013 at 6 PM, at the Festival Centre in “Od Nowa” Academic Centre for Culture and Art, in the Bielany district in Toruń. Tickets: 100/120 pln.

Krystyna Janda and Danuta Wałęsa will have a meeting with the audience, following the performance. Admission to the meeting is free of charge.

2013 Programme

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