/Georges Méliès and Theatrum Magicum

Georges Méliès and Theatrum Magicum

During such festival as Etiuda&Anima there simply must be some kind of event combining both film and music. We invite you all to a screening of Georges Méliès’ movies with live music of guitarist Kuba Duda, as well as to a screening of “Theatrum Magicum”, a remarkable project of Marcin Giżycki, inspired by work of Jan Potocki.


Georges Méliès was a cinematography pioneer. He was an amazing film director and a prestidigitator. The screening of his films, which were kindly lend to us by National Film Achieve of Prague, is a real find for film enthusiasts.  The films speak volumes about the true genius of their maker, as well as  about the level of his creative invention and imagination. An additional attraction is a music performance of a guitarist – Kuba Duda – during the film screening.

The second part of the evening is going to focus on „Theatrum Magicum”, a film directed by Marcin Giżycki. As the director says himself, the idea for the movie came to him in 2007 which is nearly 100 years after Méliès made his. Giżycki wanted to make a silent movie. This 24-minutes long film required huge amount of work, a big number of crew members, numerous costumes, as well as a considerable budget. And it is definitely worth it.

Natalia Szczepanek


Theatrum Magicum

A vague idea for the film Theatrum Magicum, even without a title, emerged soon after an animators conference which I organized in 2007 at the Łańcut Castle. Wit Wójtowicz, the director of the museum and a great animated film lover, let us meet in the court theatre, in which count Jan Potocki, author of The Manuscript Found in Saragossa (Rękopis znaleziony w Saragossie) staged his short plays called The Parades (Parady), in 1792, to the delight of the castle dwellers. In the  meantime, the Quay brothers, who also participated in the conference, were working on their impression document Inventorium of Traces, in which they looked for some traces of the count`s presence in the castle chambers. Having watched this interesting and unconventional film, I thought that I would look for the spirit of Jan Potocki in the theatre, little displayed in the film by the famous twins from London. That is why I again reached for inspiration to my favourite read, namely The Parades, and the idea for a film started to materialize quickly.

The count`s plays are based predominantly on funny, absurd dialogues (yet they do not lack situational humour, whose elements were also transferred to the film). However, I preferred a silent film and I did not want to make yet another adaptation of many-times- performed one-act plays. But the characters seemed colourful enough for me not to want to give them up. And so I borrowed them from the count and made them members of an itinerant prestidigitator`s troupe; however, I left the relationships between them just as they were in Potocki`s play.  Kasander, a burgher, became the prestidigitator, but Zerzabella, his amorous daughter, Gil – a servant in love with her, and Zerzabella`s admirer, Leander, were taken straight from The Parades. And if we have a prestidigitator on stage, a professional association with Georges Méliès appears naturally. However, it did not stop at literary and film associations, as our Méliès takes certain things after baron Münchhausen from Gustave Doré`s illustration.

Marcin Giżycki




Kuba Duda is a young guitarist and the author of instrumental music, which leaves space for your thoughts and imaginations to flow freely. During solo acts he plays his own compositions on guitar using various techniques and effects. His cloudy noir style of playing reminds masters of improvised solo guitar like Marc Ribot, Aram Bajakian and Raphael Rogiński. He opened two concerts in Cracow for Jozef Van Wissem – lute player and the author of music score for Jim Jarmusch’s movie „Only Lovers Left Alive”. Some listeners compare the mood of his music to soundtracks from David Lynch’s and Jim Jarmusch’s movies, which had large influence on his style. To enrich solo acts he screens old film reels on analog projectors, which make the atmosphere even more dreamy. In march 2017 he released instrumental solo album which was recorded at home. Compositions are untitled, numbered only with Roman numerals. They tell stories without the words and listeners can  interpret them on their own. Beside solo acts he plays with the band Patrick The Pan. In the past he collaborated with Vladimirska, The Silver Owls, Teddy Jr. and The Undertakers and Limboski.


Georges Mélies and others
from the archive of Národni
Filmový Archiv in Prague
24th November (Friday), 10.30 pm.
Kijów Centrum – Large Screening Room


Theatrum Magicum
(dir. Marcin Giżycki, Poland 2017, 23 min.)
24th November (Friday), 10.30 pm.
Kijów Centrum – Large Screening Room