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Estrada Rzeszowska had its first beginnings in the 1950s, when the warfare in southeastern Poland fell silent. In 1948 the Capital Artistic Organization “Artos” was established, which organized theatrical performances, concerts of symphony orchestras and musical ensembles. In 1955. “Artos”' was dissolved, and in its place the state-owned Enterprise for Stage Events “Estrada” was established, which in 1960 was transformed into the Voivodeship Enterprise for Artistic Events. Turning to the further turn of Estrada's fortunes, in 1953 a branch of Artos in Rzeszow was established by the Cracow branch, while a year later stage agencies were set up all over the country, receiving grants to carry out politically involved programs. In 1958, the Voivodeship Stage Enterprises were subordinated to the Voivodeship National Councils. That same year, on December 14, the Estrada Rzeszowska was established, so this date is considered its birth.

The first director of the Estrada was Julian Krzywka, who hired great artists, including such figures as Anna German. The first shows for which Estrada became famous were: “Pożar Serca”, the children's show “Cyrk Tarabumba” and “Świt nad Afryką”. During the time of his leadership of the Rzeszow institution, Estrada's activity deserves to be called a golden period. The performances were appreciated in the press and among audiences, and received numerous awards. Particularly noteworthy is the Main Prize of the Minister of Culture and Art at the First National Festival of Stage Ensembles in 1963 in Olsztyn, won for the show “Julia, czyli delikatność uczuć”. During the festival, the group also won 5 individual awards.  This success turned the eyes of all of Poland to Rzeszow and opened the gates of the Rzeszow stage to the country.

In 1964, there was a change in management at Estrada Rzeszowska. For a short period of time, the position of director was occupied by Jerzy Kobryń, and after three years Jakub Ciastoń took over the function, working with Elwira Turska, who became artistic director. One of the main regular events that appeared every year was the Rzeszow Stage Meetings initiated back in the 1960s. Their purpose was to present the most interesting phenomena and personalities of the Polish stage scene. That's why the stars themselves appeared there: including Czerwono-Czarni with Karin Stanek, Ewa Demarczyk, Mieczysław Fogg, Ewa Bem, Stan Borys, Maryla Rodowicz, Helena Vondrackowa. The audience was also attracted by performances by such bands as Czerwone Gitary, Trubadurzy and Anawa with Marek Grechuta.

In 1975, Bogdan Chorążuk became director of Estrada. Musician Piotr Furtas joins the cast, creating a vocal and musical group called Fenix, which collaborated with Zbigniew Wodecki and Tadeusz Woźniak, among others. A cabaret group was also formed, originally called Tubylec and later renamed to Golec band. The biggest event was a concert by Duke Ellington's famous New York orchestra. The Rzeszow Philharmonic Hall was bursting at the seams.

However, the 1980s were not an easy time for the Estrada Rzeszowska. After martial law was declared in December 1981, Estrada, like other cultural institutions in Poland, had to suspend its activities. The following year, the Council of Ministers made a decision that resulted in stage institutions having to support themselves with their own funds. One would have thought that this was the end for Estrada. However, thanks to the efforts of the artists and the new director Antoni Dariusz Dubiel, the institution was doing very well. The selection of rock bands that were fashionable at the time, such as Maanam, Republika, Bajm and Wanda i Banda, brought in a large profit, which allowed it to survive the hard times. Performances such as “Spoza góry i rzek” and “Dziewczyna z deszczu” appeared. In 1983, the formula of the Rzeszow Stage Meetings changed, becoming the All-Polish Stage Meetings, or “OSET” (in polish “Ogólnopolskie Spotkania Estradowe”) for short. It was an excellent opportunity to confront the achievements of stages from all over Poland, giving a chance to develop this branch of entertainment at that time. Each year the jury included esteemed actors, directors or music critics, composers and lyricists. Among them Jonasz Kofta or Krzysztof Materna. The last 6th edition of OSET was held in 1989. It can be said that the OSET period was the silver years of the Estrada Rzeszowska.

After 1989, there was a sharp decline in audiences due to Poland's political change. Patronage functions over artistic institutions were taken over by the local government, which provided minimal financial support to Estrada . In this situation, the acting and music ensembles were disbanded, but this did not stop Estrada from creating new programs. Estrada began to direct its activities towards organizing concerts, inviting soloists and ensembles to the voivodeship. The big event of this period was the creation of the Scena Propozycji by Rzeszow director Janusz Pokrywka. Thanks to this, such plays were soon created as: “Ptasiek”, “Ballada o trzech drzwiach i stodole”, “Indyk”. The director also prepared many plays for children, some of which are: “Na ten Nowy Rok”, “O wróbelku Elemelku”, “Zaczarowany świat lalek”. With his performances, Janusz Pokrywka was very successful in realizing the ideas of plastic theater. He was constantly surprising with ideas and powerful vision, showing artistic autonomy.

In November 2006, Estrada Rzeszowska prepared a wonderful 45th anniversary on stage for Stan Borys, who comes from Rzeszow. He was accompanied on stage by the Wroclaw rock group “Imię jego 44”. His long-standing artistic work was rewarded with the Golden Cross of Merit,  “Zasłużony dla Podkarpacia” badge and the “Gloria Artis” medal. After the departure of director Dubiel, Estrada Rzeszowska again received funding for cultural activities from the city, and it has remained so until now. Since 2010, Estrada has been in charge of organizing the city's largest cultural and special events, among them festivals, the Christmas Fair or the City New Year's Eve.  The leading events organized by the Rzeszow Estrada are: Paniaga Festival, Rockowa Noc, Carpathia Festival, Festival of Urban Space and European Stadium of Culture. Detailed information about these events can be found in the “co robimy” tab.

The year 2013 resulted in the launch of the Cultural Incubator of Rzeszow, which was to support the cultural initiatives of Estrada Rzeszowska. Initially intended as a temporary project, the project grew into the animation department of Estrada Rzeszowska and became an inseparable part of it. The mission of the Cultural Incubator of Rzeszow is to support social initiatives in the field of broadly understood culture, social and animation activities. Its creative team is the initiator of such activities as the “Youth (for) the City” competition, Volunteer Academy, Summer Cultural Garden, Social Lemonade, Plant Adoption Point, RIKcafe and Estrada Studio. In addition to those mentioned, the Cultural Incubator of Rzeszow hosts workshops, Rzeszow Drawing, Domówki u Janusza, Breakfasts with Art, Garage Sales, author meetings, discussion panels, film screenings or exhibitions.

Currently, Estrada Rzeszowska is engaged in cultural activities and professional organization of city cultural events, local interdisciplinary festivals, concerts and recitals, etc. It popularizes interesting phenomena from various fields of art. As part of its educational and cultural animation activities, it runs the Cultural Incubator of Rzeszow and has a professional sound recording studio, Estrada Studio. Estrada Rzeszowska is a well-established institution operating since 1958. At the beginning of its activity it focused on the creation of musical performances and shows, after the political change in Poland it began to direct its activities towards the organization of concerts, inviting solo-artists and ensembles to the voivodeship. At present, it is the organizer of the largest cultural events in Rzeszow and strongly supports grassroots activities and initiatives. It is worth mentioning that there are only 3 Estrada's left in the whole of Poland today - apart from Rzeszow, we can still find them in Poznan and Warsaw.

Want to know more?  Listen about the history of the Estrada Rzeszowska in the podcast “Przygrywka”


Estrada Rzeszowska
ul. Jagiellońska 24
35-025 Rzeszów
NIP: 813 026 90 58

8.30 - 16.30

17 853 80 04 fax: 17 853 80 13
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