Theodor-Cristian POPESCU

Academic Year:

Field of Study:

Research Program:
NEC – Adevărul Holding

University of Arts, Târgu-Mureș



Research project: Models of Continuity, Discontinuity, Adaptation and Transformation of Post '89 Independent Theatre in Romania, Poland and Czech Republic. Context and Case Studies

I belong to the last generation that started its university studies under the communist regime, during the autumn of 1989. When – less than a semester away – the entire social system crashed around me, I was not prepared to imagine the scale of the consequences on my subsequent theatre practice. But I discovered soon enough, after my first performances directed for the state theatres, that the natural flow of communication between theatre artists and the society was strangulated by an organizational system in place in all the repertory theatres (and the entire ensemble of mentalities generated by the long existence of this system) that was losing the pace with the reality around us.
In all other artistic fields people were trying new ways, plunging into the unknown: new independent publishing houses, film studios, musical ensembles and recording houses, cultural magazines and art galleries begun to write a new history by overthrowing the established cultural hierarchies, establishing for future independent artists what Andreea Dumitru calls “a culture of the precedent”. But very few theatre artists took this path; I was one of them. Therefore, after the first decade post’ 89, the independent theatre movement was still regarded as marginal and continued to possess a heroic, missionary aura.
In this respect, the Romanian theatrical activity proved, among all the artistic fields, unique.
How could one explain such a phenomenon?

A full-length study is available here.