The Story of the Merciful or Testament of the Dog

TR Warszawa (before Teatr Rozmaitości),  Warsaw, Poland, 1999
Author: Ariano Suassuna
Directed by Piotr Cieplak

about the production

Testament of the Dog is a puzzle of funny and magical stories with unexpected final part. In a Brazilian play from the 50s the inhabitants of a small city are lured by a temptation to gain money which they were given in a will. Not of a man, but ... a dog. The whole Cieplak's stage production is his own understanding of religion – a portrait full of very human almost physical imaginations of the God’s existence somewhere within a hairbreadth. His story persuades that to be sinful is natural if mercy is not only an empty word. It also testifies that religion and ethics can be discussed with courage, straightforwardly and that which is metaphysical can be quite normal and natural, because the God is merciful.


directed by: Piotr Cieplak
translation: Witold Wojciechowski, Danuta Zmij
stage and costume design: Ewa Beata Wodecka
sound: Leszek Bzdyl
music – The Chamber Orchestra Consisting of: Pawet Czepułkowski, Jacek Fedorowicz, Michał Litwiniec
Angels: Jolanta Łagodzińska, Grażyna Wolszczak, Jester: Magdalena Kuta, Grilo: Waldemar Obloza, Chico: Cezary Kosińiski, Clergyman: Lech Łotocki, Zakrystian: Janusz Łagodziński, Baker: Jerzy Pożarowski, Baker's Wife: Maria Maj, Bishop: Pawet Szczesny, Little Brother: Adam Marszalik, Severino: Wojciech Kalarus, Thief: Adam Woronowicz, Lucifer: Michał Konarski, Jesus: Mirosław Zbrojewicz, The Merciful: Joanna Kasperek


Piotr Cieplak (1960) graduated from the State Drama University in Warsaw in theatre directing, made his debut in 1989 in the Wilam Horzyca Theatre in Torun where he worked for three years. During this period of fi scarier he won his first award The Best Young Director (1991) at the Confrontations Festival in Opole for directing the Tuwim's play Madagascar Queen's Soldier. After three year Torun work he co-operated with the theatres in Warsaw and Wroclaw. He was awarded again Grand Prix at the Confrontation Festival in Opole this time, for his theatre staging of the play A True Account of the Glorious Resurrection of Our Lord by Mikolai of Wilkoviecko (1994, Teatr Wspólczesny, Wroclaw). From January 1997 to October 1998 he worked as managing director of the Teatr Rozmaitości. Here he also staged the theatre performance Testament of the Dog.

Piotr Cieplak is another representative from among the young Polish generation of directors who have also attended the Divadelna Nitra Festival. Two preceding years of the Festival it was director Grzegorz Jarzyna alias Horst d'Albertis (now Sylwia Torsh) and specifically his productions Tropical Elation (DN '97) and Ivona, Princess of Burgundy (DN '98) were among the festival best.



Materials available

Video of the production: no
Scripts of the production: PL

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