Lem vs. P.K. Dick

Teatr Łaźnia Nowa, Kraków, Poland

Written and Directed by Mateusz Pakuła

Theatre Production for the Mała Boska Komedia (Little Divine Comedy Festival), Poland 2020


October 17, 2021, 14:00

October 21, 2021, 14:00

WHERE: Canal Side Theatre

Duration: 70 minutes

Screened in Polish, with Chinese subtitles

This Project was supported by the Adam Mickiewicz Institute

Subtitles produced by Fabutrans  

Photographer:© Monika Stolarska


A grimly funny story about the clash of rationalism and madness, featuring two giants of science fiction literature and, at the same time, giants of imagination. Dick, bravely played by Tomasz Schuchardt, is the most colourful character here. He is a picturesque, paranoid hippie, skillfully constructed from references to similar characters from American pop culture. In this performance, Lem is compared to a school nerd and a nerd whose greatest insanity is eating cream cakes—Jan Jurkowski does this sacrificially and very amusingly.

Przemek Gulda, audience member

About Lem vs. P.K. Dick

This production, Lem vs. P.K. Dick, is directed by Mateusz Pakuła and produced by Łaźnia Nowa Theater, is based on the biographies and works of two literary giants who were pioneers of science-fiction: Stanisław Lem, a Polish sci-fi genius and Philip K. Dick, a visionary and an unchallenged king of global sci-fi literature.

Works of both authors have been adapted into films and plays. Both continue to inspire artists, writers and directors, and to provoke one to ask difficult, existential questions. Few know, however, that the writers knew each other. And though they kept up a lively correspondence, they never managed to meet in person. Why did the two writers' friendship by correspondence turn into hatred? Was the whole misunderstanding due exclusively to money?


Performers: Tomasz Schuchardt, Jan Jurkowski

About Mateusz Pakuła

Mateusz Pakuła is a playwright and dramatist, and graduate of the National Academy of Theatre Arts in Krakow. He is winner of the Gdynia Drama Prize (for Sorrows of the Tropics), winner and multiple finalist in the Competition for the Best Staging of Polish Contemporary Drama (individual honourable mention for My Anxiety is Armed), and scholarship holder from the Minister of Culture and the City of Krakow. His plays have been translated into English, German, Czech, Spanish and Ukrainian.

About the Boska Komedia (Divine Comedy International Theatre Festival)

Created in 2008, the Divine Comedy International Theatre Festival ("Boska Komedia") has rapidly established itself as one of the leading events in Poland’s cultural calendar. In Krakow, Poland's third largest city, the festival is held every year in mid-December, organised by the Krakow Festival Office and the Łaźnia Nowa Theatre. Named for Dante's Divine Comedy, and like that work, the plays at the festival are in three parts: Inferno, Purgatorio, and Paradiso.

The Inferno (Hell) segment of the festival features productions of the most controversial and critically acclaimed Polish plays of the year. Purgatorio includes new productions of established plays from Poland or elsewhere, and Paradiso hands the reigns to young and undiscovered directors and actors.

About Teatr Łaźnia Nowa

The Łaźnia Nowa Theater is a thriving Kraków theatre, housed in the renovated, post-industrial space of the former school workshops of the Mechanical School Complex in Nowa Huta. From 2005 to 2015, Łaźnia Nowa produced more than forty shows, much awarded at numerous Polish theatre festivals. Due to its unique space, which has been variously modified, the most interesting European performances are eagerly hosted in the Nowa Łąnia Bath.

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