European Contemporary Classics/Theatre

The first series by CPR’s publishing imprint ‘Black Mountain Press’ is a collection of ground-breaking authoritative works by scholars and practitioners from throughout Europe. It makes available, in English, new thinking on the practice of theatre, its processes and contexts. It aims to document innovative methods, theories and approaches to making and understanding theatre.

Black Mountain Press European Contemporary Classics/Theatre Catalogue:

land of ashes


Land of Ashes and Diamonds: My Apprenticeship in Poland followed by 26 Letters from Jerzy Grotowski to Eugenio Barba       

By Eugenio Barba

Land of Ashes and Diamonds publishes for the first time a series of letters from Jerzy Grotowski to Eugenio Barba. Written during the early ‘Theatre Productions’ phase of Grotowski’s work in the 1960’s. The letters are contextualised in an extended autobiographical essay by Barba, which chronicles his early contact, and lifelong friendship, with Grotowski and his close collaborators, and charts their deep significance to his own life and work. Detailing the precise, concrete, sustained, and measured work upon which the Grotowski laboratorium was founded, Land of Ashes and Diamonds offers new insights into the work of two great masters of twentieth century theatre.

Hardback: ISBN: 1 902 867 009     £25.00
Paperback: ISBN: 1 902 867 017   £12.95

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theatre solitude

Theatre – Solitude, Craft, Revolt                                                           

By Eugenio Barba

Theatre – Solitude, Craft, Revolt is a highly illuminating and provocative professional autobiography by one of Europe’s leading theatre directors. It is a collection of essays dating from 1964 to 1995 by Eugenio Barba, director, theorist and founder of Odin Teatret. As a chronicle of over thirty years’ sustained work with a permanent ensemble, it reveals the meaning of his influential theatre practice, his life’s work and guiding principles. The book is a transformation of Barba’s previous publication Beyond the Floating Islands (1985), focusing on theatre practice and the meaning, the ‘Why’ of doing theatre. As such it forms the ideal companion to his other book The Paper Canoe (1995) which expands his theories on the work of the actor and also Theatre Anthropology. The peculiar relationships between disciplines and revolt (craft and its denial, training and its betrayal) are revealed as creative strategies throughout these texts. But most of all, a singular capacity for mutation – which paradoxically affirms a will to remain oneself, protecting ones identity – emerges as a key to Barba’s professional biography and explains in some way Odin Teatret’s longevity. An illustrated appendix compiled by Fernando Taviani comprehensively catalogues the productions of thirty five years work.

Hardback: ISBN: 1 902 867  025    £35.00
Paperback: ISBN: 1 902 867 033   £14.95

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The Dead Memory Machine: Tadeusz Kantor’s Theatre of Death         

By Krysztof Plesniarowicz

Krzysztof Plesniarowicz’s The Dead Memory Machine, translated into English by William Brand, is a hugely revised, expanded and updated version of the first book-length study of Kantor’s Theatre of Death, originally published in Polish in 1990, including many additional images and illustrations.

‘”When man and his work cease to exist, memory remains, a message sent into the future, to the coming generations…” This book is “this message” in its careful exegesis not only of what the archives remember about Kantor via the stored materials, but also, and maybe more important, of how one can intersect with Kantor’s memory machines – The Dead Class, Wielopole, Wielopole, Let the Artists Die, I Shall Never Return, and Today is My Birthday. This is a highly nuanced analysis of spatial memories materialized in the manifold of Kantor’s space of representation. This analysis complements Part I of the book which focuses on the contours of Kantor’s biography and cultural lineage as well as Kantor’s experiments with the (eternal) avant-garde art of the second half of the 20th century – the Informel Art, Emballages, Happenings, and his own “theatre of essence” and ephemeral memories.’ – Michal Kobialka, Professor in History/Literature, Department of Theatre, Arts and Dance, College of Liberal Arts, University of Minnesota

Hardback: ISBN: 1902867 041     £29.95
Paperback: ISBN: 1902867 05x   £16.95

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