Enchanted Lublin – Meetings with the Storytellers of the World

Enchanted Lublin – Meetings with the Storytellers of the World

The goal of the Enchanted Lublin – Meetings with the Storytellers of the World festival is to help rebuild (in the form of a “new tradition”) and popularise storytelling, a disappearing folk tradition today. The territory of the Lublin region used to be a melting pot of various cultures (of the Poles, Jews, Orthodox Christians) and a symbolic meeting place of the East and West. That is why we want the varied storytelling traditions associated with these great cultures to meet in Lublin.

The festival will present tales featuring the motif of the devil and angel, typical of Lublin and the Lublin region, as well as those evoking the tradition of Chassidic tales originating from this area. Besides the storytellers’ presentations, there will be storytelling workshops, activities for children as well as lectures and meetings devoted to the storytelling tradition.

Enchanted Lublin – Meetings with the Storytellers of the World

For many years, the storytelling tradition has been experiencing a revival all around the world. In the times when news about current and past events was mostly communicated in oral form, a special role was played by raconteurs spinning yarns to listeners gathered round a fire, at someone’s home or at a tavern. The place where we live in the Lublin region was no different. However, the advances of modern civilisation have brought about the total disappearance of the unique phenomenon of storytelling throughout Poland.

The history of the Lublin region is inextricably linked with the Chassids who used to tell stories about the events in the life of their Rebbes or Tzaddiks. Although this Jewish world was destroyed in the war, these tales have fortunately been recorded and continue to be told all over the world. The shtetls, the small towns inhabited by Jews and Christians, were a characteristic feature of the Eastern European cultural landscape, in the territory of Belarus, Ukraine, Lithuania, Czech Republic, Slovakia, Romania and Hungary.

The Roztocze region to the south-east of Lublin lies at the extreme of the Great Steppe extending from Manchuria across the entire Asia, Russia and Ukraine. For thousands of years, Europe has been raided by the peoples coming from the vast expanses of the Steppe. Hence it is difficult to understand European history without the Great Steppe. Lublin could become the venue for meetings of storytellers from the East (the Tales of the Great Steppe) and storytellers from the West. Here the great cultures of the East and West could interact through stories. With this idea in mind, the Festival will present storytellers from the Land of the Great Steppe. Another Lublin-related theme is based on Chassidic tales.

For more than 10 years, the “Grodzka Gate Center – NN Theatre” Centre has undertaken various activities in an attempt to revive and popularise the extinct tradition of storytelling. The inhabitants of small, often neglected and poor towns and villages of the Lublin region have also been included in the project.

In Lublin itself, the storytelling project draws on two legends closely linked with the city’s history, namely “The Dream of Leszek the Black”, where Michael the Archangel appears, and the story of “The Devil’s Hand”. Therefore, we welcome storytellers with tales about devils and angels.

Enchanted Lublin

Addressed primarily to children and youth, this educational and artistic project has been conducted by the Lublin Underground Route since 2010 and is closely related to its peculiar location. The Route links two places connected with legends, namely the building of the former Crown Tribunal where the famous devil’s court session was held (the story of the Devil’s Hand), and the Parish Church Square, where Prince Leszek the Black had a dream about Michael the Archangel. Some people say that every now and then you can hear the strange sounds of Żmij (Dragon Viper) from behind the walls of the dark and winding corridors.

The idea behind each edition of Enchanted Lublin is that children and youth become the authors or co-authors of new engaging narratives about the intangible cultural heritage of the Lublin Region. We hope that developing the story of Lublin in this way will help awaken the individual awareness of the place and thus transform the city and bring out its magic.

Festival program
12.06 (Thursday)

9.00-16.00 (entry every half hour) – Premiere of Underground City film animation (cycle Animations of Lublin Legends at. In the basement of the old Crown Court, children will be greeted by the Lublin Dragon Viper, and at the entrance to the underworld, by Moustache-Devil. The Lublin Devil, telling extraordinary stories, will lead the group to Laterna Magica, where Animations of Lublin Legends will be presented. At the exit from the underworld, the children will meet Michael the Archangel, who will give each of them a DVD with film animations prepared in three editions of Animations of Lublin Legends (2012–2014 ) .

Location: Lublin Underground Route, 1 Rynek Street (free admission) , reservations : tel 81 534 65 70

12.06 (Thursday)
18.00 –
Festival Opening by Ewa Benesz
César Brie (Argentina / Italy ) Il mare in tasca ( Sea in The Pocket )

Location: The "Grodzka Gate – NN Theatre" Centre, 21 Grodzka Street (free admission)

13.06 (Friday)
8.00–13.00 – Competition for the most interesting story of the Enchanted Lublin.
On the second day of the Festival, children who took part in a series of workshops will be invited to participate in a contest for the most interesting story of the Enchanted Lublin using large-format educational blocks and figures. Every child will be rewarded with an educational folder with the collection of the most interesting stories relating to Lublin legends, prepared by school children for this year's event. The prize for the winners of the contest will be publishing their stories presented in the form of digital storytelling and attractive gifts: handmade toys and sweets depicting characters from Lublin legends.

Location: Old Town Square in Lublin

18.00 - Sista Bramini and Camilla Dell'Agnola (Italy ) Miti d' acqua (Myths about Water)
19.00 - Witold Dąbrowski (Poland ) The Magician of Lublin

Location: The "Grodzka Gate – NN Theatre" Centre, 21 Grodzka Street (free admission)

14.06 (Saturday)

17.00 - Khadija Hassala (Morocco) (Tinitrane. Daughter of stars)
18.00 - Dominique Lautré (France) L' Equilibriste (The Equilibrist)
19.00 - Daniela Marcello (Italy) Sa Mamma Manna (The Great Mother)

Location: The "Grodzka Gate – NN Theatre" Centre, 21 Grodzka Street (free admission)

15.06 (Sunday)

18.00 - Chyskyyrai (Valentina Romanova) and Stanislav Parfenov (Russia, Yakutia)
Хлодный ветер , что выдохнула я . Песни Олонхо (The Cool Wind I breathed. Ołoncho Songs)
9.00 - Ewa Benesz (Poland) - Kochajmy się. Księga XII Pana Tadeusza Adama Mickiewicza (Pan Tadeusz Book XII Love and Friendship!)

Location: The "Grodzka Gate – NN Theatre" Centre, 21 Grodzka Street (free admission)
Performances are presented in their original language with translation into Polish.

16.06 (Monday)

17.00 – Poost-festival special show of Underground City film animation with the participation of artists and a concert of Kaja and Janusz Prusinowski, authors of the soundtrack .

Animation Underground City tells the story of the fantastic adventures of a boy who - denying the real existence of Lublin Viper Dragon and the magical power of the Stone of Misfortune - falls to the Underground City. Surprisingly, in the basement, he gains an unusual friend. If he wants to get out, he will be put to the test...

Directing, shooting, editing: Joanna Polak
Written by: Monika Krzykała
Music: Kaja and Janusz Prusinowscy
Arts consultancy : Katarzyna Niedźwiadek
Production Manager: Alice Magiera
Cooperation: Youth Culture “Pod Akacją" (stage design), Kindergarten No. 26 in Lublin (actors),  I.J. Paderewski Primary School no 43 in Lublin (narrators) .

Location: The "Grodzka Gate – NN Theatre" Centre, 21 Grodzka Street (free admission)