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Instytut im. Jerzego Grotowskiego
  • Polish
  • English
Rynek-RatuszBrzezinkaNa Grobli
Two Paths Studio

Training session with Jakub Gontarski

Sat–Sun 2–3 April 2016, 17:00–19:00

Laboratory Theatre Space

One-day training sessions

The workshop will be conducted in English


Contact and application

Please email your completed application form by 20 March 2016 to Justyna Rodziska-Nair at Please include in the subject of the email ‘BodyConstitution workshops’ followed by the name of the chosen workshop. The number of places is limited. Applicants will be accepted on a first-come-first-serve basis.

Admission free, advance booking required

Through the movement and physical actions developed by the Two Paths Studio we will together enter the process of importance of martial arts traditions and ethics, the symbolism of the body, relation and non-relation, balance and non-balance, balance in the state of imbalance and balance in the relative perception of rhythm and pace. The central focus of the session will be body expression – participants will enter the process of unleashing the potential of body expression through improvisation. Following a number of different directions of physical training we will focus on preparing and strengthening the body and discovering specific types of contact and partnership – based on trust and cooperation or on distrust and the desire to take control – by misleading or taking advantage of moments of lapsed concentration. We will also work with exercises developing trust, alertness, speed, pace, flexibility, the sense of distance and space, and the ability to listen with the body, which, due to its anatomy, always assumes a specific constitution.

Jakub Gontarski

Photo by Karol Jarek

Jakub Gontarski trained at 13 Stunt School in Wrocaw. He initiated the String Body programme dedicated to exploring the expression, presence, dramaturgy and creativity of martial arts in the path of Warrior-Performer. To find inspiration, he travels to Brazil, where he takes active part in and documents candomblé rituals. He has co-created many performances, including Animan – I Am That and Madhouse, and performs movement improvisations on stage to live music. Jakub practiced the Japanese martial art of judo and the Brazilian martial art of capoeira, in Brazil and in many European countries. He studied with eminent movement practitioners in Poland and internationally. His inspirations are Brazilian jiu-jitsu, boxing, sport and body mechanics. He collaborates with the Grotowski Institute as a leader of the Two Paths Studio, which is part of the BodyConstitution research programme. He is a co-organiser of the Cyrkulacje Festival in Wrocaw, including the Planet Kids project, and is President of the Momentum Association of Creative Initiatives. He worked for the Krzyowa Foundation for Mutual Understanding in Europe, running workshops and creating choreographies and performances with an international group of young people. Jakub leads workshops with socially excluded youth in Wrocaw, also as part of Thought in Motion, a project of the Institute of Music and Dance. He taught movement classes at Ente private kindergarten (European Cooperation Centre). He plays Afro-Brazilian instruments, and is the author of a poetry book, Death and Rebirth.

Two Paths Studio seeks to develop a training which centres around the ideas of confrontation and in-depth understanding of the function of training in studio work, drawing on the martial arts experience of the Studio leaders, Przemysaw Baszczak (aikido) and Jakub Gontarski (capoeira). The first stage of Studio’s work focused on ‘two paths’ – two different movement traditions, Japanese and Brazilian, attempting to find a common territory that a performer, or ‘practitioner’, can draw from. Source techniques were to provide an impulse to build a broad set of movement skills and to widen the spectrum of psychophysical abilities. In-depth examination of the relations between aikido and capoeira, including of the training models proposed by the leaders, and inspirations from the searches of other Studio members (Karolina Brzk, Agnieszka Rybak, Tomáš Wortner) opened a new stage of work. It was vital to focus on one chosen path to achieve better communication with the chosen tradition and more lucid transmission into performative actions. The current work of the Studio – smaller-scale research efforts undertaken by Studio members – revolves around the two core, independently pursued paths.

As part of BodyConstitution, practical seminar