chapter  30
12 Pages

Tues Ie fils de quelqu'un

ByJerzy Grotowski

Each time we limit ourselves to certain terms, we are afloat in the world of ideas, of abstractions. We can then find some extremely revealing formulas, but they belong to the realm of thoughts and not to the realm of realities. I don't know if I have said, in the past, that theatre complements social reality. Perhaps I've said this. But for me theatre is not something that can be put in a box. How could I separate theatre from literature? For me, as for any good European, the relation between theatre and literature is extremely strong (which is not at all the case in certain types of classical Oriental theatre). Authors, the great authors of the past, were very important to me, even if I struggled with them. I stood face to face with Slowacki or Calderon and it was like Jacob's fight with the angel: "Tell me your secret!" But, to say the truth, your secret,what the hell? What counts is our secret, for us living today. But if I understand your secret, Calderon, I am going to understand my own. I don't speak with you as with an author whose work I will stage, but I speak with you as with my great-grandfather. That means I am in the process of speaking with my ancestors. And, of course, I am not in agreement with my ancestors. But at the same time, I can't deny them. They are my base; they are my source. It's a personal affair between them and me. And that was how I worked on dramatic literature and almost always with authors of the past: exactly because it was a matter of ancestors, of other generations.