Stefan Jaracz in the 1930s
24 December 1883
|Died||11 August 1945
|Known for||Dramatic theatre|
Stefan Jaracz (24 December 1883 – 11 August 1945) was a Polish actor and theater producer. He served as the artistic director of Ateneum Theatre in Warsaw during the interwar period (1930–32), and within a short period raised its reputation as one of the leading voices for Poland's new intelligentsia, with groundbreaking productions of Danton's Death by Georg Büchner (1931), The Captain of Köpenick by Carl Zuckmayer (1932), as well as popular Ladies and Husars (Damy i Huzary) by Aleksander Fredro (1932) and The Open House by Michał Bałucki.
Jaracz was born in Stare Żukowice near Tarnów during the Partitions of Poland. He studied law, history of art, and literature at the Jagiellonian University of Kraków, but gave up his studies to join theatre. He moved to Poznań for yet another contract where he was drafted to the Austrian army in 1907. A year later he settled in Łódź where he performed until 1911. He moved to Warsaw in the Russian Partition and worked in Teatr Mały and Teatr Polski (1913). He was sent to Moscow by the Russians (1915). Upon his return to sovereign Poland in 1918 he embarked upon an energetic career in emerging national and experimental theatre, with guest performances in over ninety cities and towns until 1928. In 1930 he took over the Ateneum of Warsaw. He managed it until the Nazi-Soviet invasion of Poland, sharing the responsibilities with Leon Schiller in 1932–33 season.
During World War II he was arrested and imprisoned at the German Auschwitz concentration camp. Jaracz was released after numerous interventions on 15 May 1941. He died in Otwock, near Warsaw in 1945 due to his ailing health. The repertory Stefan Jaracz Theatre in Łódź, Poland is named after him, and so is the Ateneum Theatre in Warsaw since 1951.
- Obrona Częstochowy (1913)
- Countess Walewska (1914)
- Pan Tadeusz (1928)
- Księżna Łowicka (1932)
- Bezimienni bohaterowie (1932)
- Młody Las (1934)
- Pan Twardowski (1936)
- Róża (1936)
- Michał Bujanowicz (June 2004). "Teatr Ateneum im. Stefana Jaracza". Teatry i grupy teatralne (in Polish). Adam Mickiewicz Institute Culture.pl. Retrieved March 14, 2013.
- Popularna Encyklopedia Powszechna Wydawnictwa Fogra (2013). "Teatr Ateneum w Warszawie". Teatr; Europa. Encyklopedia WIEM. Retrieved March 14, 2013.
- Monika Mokrzycka-Pokora (September 2006). "Stefan Jaracz". Resources Theatre. Adam Mickiewicz Institute Culture.pl. Retrieved March 15, 2013.