Implementing local organization – Lietuvos nacionalinis dramos teatras

Programme start year – 2017

The genre of documentary theatre, the so-called verbatim theatre is associated with verbal and text-based forms of expression. Although in the UK this genre has a deep tradition and is popular among the audience,  in Lithuania it has just taken its first steps. 

The British Council collaborated with the Lithuanian National Drama Theater and director Jonas Tertelis to create a documentary theater performance Unknown Land. Šalčia. The play was introduced in March 2018.  Jonas Tertelis and the actors carried out the documentary research and gathered the material for the play in the town of Šalčininkai. They collected stories of the local people and organized creative workshops for the local community.  

Jonas Tertelis shared his views on the play: “We have discovered a region where heroes, tragedies, social challenges, disputes, and joys are hidden. It seems that there is nothing special here, only the endless love for the country and religion, the desire to come back and create your own life. Separate stories, fragments, and facts cannot create a generalized image of Šalčininkai town, but form of different, surreal image and atmosphere of the Lithuanian peripheral town, which, to maximize documentality, using only literary storytelling, and trying to convey future performance to the audience. It is a performance not only about Šalčininkai, the periphery of Lithuania, the periphery of Europe but also about the feeling of reality in a completely different time”.