Teatr Ósmego Dnia was founded in 1964 as a student theatre by Lech Raczak and Tomasz Szymański. It has operated as an alternative professional theatre since 1979. The performances were sharp, ironic commentaries on communist Poland. During the martial law period between 1981 and 1983, the group performed in the streets and churches. After six years of activity, it was formally disbanded in 1985 and most of the actors emigrated to Italy. In 1989 the activities of the theatre in Poznan were resumed. Stanisław Barańczak (literary director of the company) and Jan A.P. Kaczmarek, who directed the Orchestra of the Eighth Day at the theatre, collaborated with the company. Between 2000 and 2014, Ewa Wójciak was the general and artistic director of the theatre. Since 2015, the director is Małgorzata Grupinska-Bis.
Lech Raczak and the actors of Teatr Ósmego Dnia—co-creators of the theatre's productions—are winners of the Konrad Swinarski Award, granted by the editors of the monthly magazine "Teatr" for their lifetime artistic activity (award for the 1993/1994 season). In 2008, the theatre received the Stanisław Ignacy Witkiewicz Prize, awarded by the Section of Theatre Critics of the Polish Centre of the International Theatre Institute on the occasion of International Theatre Day, in recognition of its contribution to popularising Polish theatre around the world.
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