Jakub Gontarski

graduated from Wrocław-based 13 Stunt School. He is a movement recreation instructor specialising in self-defense (AZS-AWF Wrocław), certified personal trainer and movement trainer (under the direction of Steve Maxwell, USA). Jakub initiated The String of the Body and Martial Partnering workshops dedicated to exploring expression, presence, dramaturgy and creativity in martial arts within the path of Warrior-Performer. To find inspiration, he travels to Brazil, where he documents his expeditions and takes active part in candomblé rituals. He has co-created many performance pieces, including Animan – I Am That and Madhouse, and performs movement improvisations on stage to live music. Jakub trained in martial arts – Japanese judo and Brazilian capoeira – for many years in Brazil and in many European countries. He studied with eminent movement practitioners in Poland and internationally. His inspirations are motor control and body mechanics. He collaborates with the Grotowski Institute in the BodyConstitution research programme. Jakub is a co-organiser of the Cyrkulacje Festival in Wrocław and Planet Kids project. He is also President of the Momentum Association of Creative Initiatives. He has worked for the Krzyżowa Foundation for Mutual Understanding in Europe, running workshops and creating choreographies and performances with an international group of young people. He also runs workshops with socially excluded youth in Wrocław, including as part of Thought in Motion, a project of the Institute of Music and Dance. Jakub has taught movement classes at Ente private kindergarten (European Cooperation Centre).