Introduction: Richard Schechner
Every Grotowski fan knows the story. At the Warsaw 1963 International Theatre Institute meeting, Eugenio Barba! (following Grotowski's instigation) insisted that delegates travel to Lodz to see the Polish Laboratory Theatre's version of Christopher Marlowe's Dr. Faustus. Barba arranged and paid for the illegal trip. Many of the international visitors were blown away, launching Grotowski's reputation in Europe and beyond. And a pattern was set: Grotowski would always be better received outside Poland than within. The indifference, or was it hostility, was mutual. Grotowski established his centers and undertook his performance research mostly outside Poland.' Dr. Faustus was in Lodz that day, but the Lab's home was Opole, a provincial backwater midway between Wroclaw and Krakow, where the theatre was struggling to survive.