Interview: Kasia Lech (Bubble Revolution) – 'Why not use my own status of a ''foreign body'' to add more layers to the text?'
A one-woman Polish fairy tale about the post-communist world
This article is from 2016.
Describing itself as a Polish fairy tale, Bubble Revolution is a one-woman performance following Vica (Kasia Lech) as she explores her memories of growing up during and after the fall of communism. Vica's colourful childhood dreams, such as endless supplies of Nutella, are abruptly broken when, as an adult, she experiences the monochrome reality of capitalism.
A Polish Theatre Ireland production, Bubble Revolution is performed in English with a Polish accent and a touch of Irish. Co-creator Lech explains that she is interested in the potential represented by a character trying to express her identity in an adopted language. This complicates the fairy story with a serious reflection on the place of the 'foreigner'.
'Why not use my own status of a ''foreign body'', my Polish accent with Irish sneaking through it, to add more layers to the text? That is why Bubble Revolution is about growing up as communism in Poland was falling down, but it is also about reframing foreignness.'
Lech was part of the team who set up Polish Theatre Ireland in 2008, a company that merges Polish and Irish theatre traditions. John Currivan, director and co-creator of Bubble Revolution, was involved in the company from early days. The role of intercultural collaboration and translation is central both to the play and to Lech's creative process, and even led her to create a document for Currivan that translated and explained every Polish cultural reference in the play.
Vica's journey through the colours, scents and sounds of her past aims to resonate with the audience's own childhood memories. Through elements of immersive theatre and multimedia techniques, these cultural references become accessible to a non-Polish audience. With Lech's academic background providing a powerful understanding of theatricality, Bubble Revolution promises to be a powerful experience that successfully transcends cultural differences.
New Town Theatre, 220 0143, 7–28 Aug (not 16, performances in Polish on 6, 20 Aug), 1.45pm, £9–£10 (£7.50–£8.50). Previews 4–6 Aug, £7 (£6).