A polish Jew with a strong interest in Indian guru philosophy was not anything exceptional or genius just as Beatles were also very keen on these oriental mysteries in the 60s. In fact, it was the hip thing to do at that time (50-60s). People were dreaming about all the magnificent colors behind the puff of peyote. (invisible to the common eyes)

At least this oriental flame brought in some fresh air to the WWII aftermath. The hermit style of guru's living permitted the so called "spiritual growth" in solitary. Individualism was grooving.

Grotowski was able to follow this "spiritual" trend as a young man. At 26, he and his friends started to practice his theory in theaters. Just like the cave men, all the worldly elements were not necessary (and could even be harmful). Things were stripped to the cores. Thus "Poor Theater" emerged to knock off the western conventions. Grotowski pursued this "spiritual" attitude through all his life. Peter Brook had referred him as the "technician of the sacred". The Grotowski theater theory was indeed very powerful. However it wasn't that genius or genuine, the tendency was simply unavoidable: it happened in music, art, drug culture and why not in theater?

However the rigid, sturdy side of this man really boosted this spiritual connection into very precise performances. Contrasting with hippies' colorful dizziness, Grotowski created a lot of strict physical exercises to acquire awareness of the mind or to "get back to the self". By reading his "Towards A Poor Theater", one can still feel this man's passion in his doing. No wonder his belief still deeply affects theaters today.

或許 Grotowski 受到神化,但不可否認這個男人的確具備超強的決心與意志力。他一生實踐了他對劇場的理論,藉由表演或團體的儀式,達到追求的自由與自我覺醒。

Grotowski 對台灣劇場的影響甚大,令人又愛又恨。這種60年代對印度隱士的靈性追求,若在劇場被濫用,反會演變成一種誇大浮實的三腳貓表演,雖佈景簡陋卻只求爆點,雖追求靈性卻煽情不堪。受過正統學習的劉靜敏女士回國後,將 Grotowski 的理論作較 authentic 的詮釋,並成立了優劇場,融合中國武術創立優人神鼓,算是融合民族文化的一種新突變吧。她在《重審魏京生》中檢視了歷史爭議性的事件,在 context 上加入 local 的元素,直到近年的上山儀式等,表演方法與形式仍透露著 G 大師的影響力。

這股追求靈性的潮流--- 有些演員受過相當訓練能表達出來,有的則只憑一股愚勇,在舞台上不堪入目。或許我們可以回歸到啟發 Grotowski 的原始問題:Who am I? 我是誰? 來內視自己及本土劇場的發展,以求新的表演理論誕生(或從其中解脫)。


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