Aleksander Zelwerowicz (1877- 1955)
A brilliant actor, director and teacher. During his life he was a managing director of theatre schools and theatres, as well as an active citizen and social activist.
He was the first Polish teacher to familiarize his students – on a regular basis – with theatre and theatre education abroad. He strived to create ways for international exchange of ideas between young people – among others, he promoted the idea of a festival of Slavonic schools.
His students travelled with him to Latvia, Slovakia, Italy, to the Czech Republic and to Yugoslavia.
His modern educational methods, which were used in his school, inspired some followers: for example, in the Czech culture (Maria Laudova- Hořicova), Yugoslavian culture (Julije Benesić) and Italy (Silvio D’Amico – today, the theatre school in Rome bears his name).
During the Second World War, Aleksander Zelwerowicz was saving Jewish people, risking his life – this is why, in 1977, he was posthumously awarded with the medal „Righteous among the Nations”, an honor given by the Yad Vashem Institute in Jerusalem.