A fragment of the material of the upcoming documentary film was presented at the Palace of Lords

A fragment of the material of the upcoming documentary film was presented at the Palace of Lords

Kotryna, the youngest sister of Žygimantas Augustus, was one of the most desirable brides in our history. And even though several influential European rulers of that time fought for her hand, she waited for her groom for almost 20 years. And finally, when there were only a few weeks left until her 36th birthday, she married the 11-year-old Prince of Sweden and Duke of Finland John III Vaza in Vilnius Cathedral. 

On the occasion of the 461st anniversary of this royal wedding, the Palace Museum on October 4. invited the audience to the experiential event "Karališkos Kotryna Jogailaitė's wedding: then and now". Creators from various fields who participated in it, using dance, music, documentary, interactive book reading and discussion, conveyed to the gathered audience what makes the life of this royal woman interesting for modern people.

The book and the birth of the film

 "Why do we know so little about Kotryna Jogailaitė - a representative of the Gediminai dynasty who managed to become the Queen of Sweden?" After all, her achievements, intriguing and even shocking life twists and incredible love story are not inferior to the drama of her famous brother Žygimantas Augustus and Barbora Radvilaitė. Queen Kotryna deserves to have books written about her, films, performances and love songs made about her," says Ilona Skujaitė, the author of the event idea and the historical novel "War Bride" (Alma Littera publishing house). When writing the novel, she sought to return Kotrynas Jogailaitė from the shadow of oblivion to Lithuania's historical memory, and the story she told also impressed the readers - the first edition of the book was sold within a month of its debut, and now the fourth edition has been published.

Today, the story of Queen Catherine conquers more and more people's hearts in Lithuania, and the director, producer and moderator of experiential practices Gitana Platakytė was also tempted to create a documentary film about this extraordinary royal woman. "Over the years, only people's clothes and 'toys' - clothes, weapons, jewelry and other things - change, but the essential values, the challenges of self-realization and the secrets of the eternal meaning of life remain the same. The life story of Kotryna Jogailaitė is an opportunity to delve into the secrets of leadership and self-development, relevant at all times. Even today, her story inspires the courage to be yourself, to discover inner strength and calmly, trusting your intuition, to accept changes that lead to new discoveries," the director of the film is convinced.

When creating the film, she decided to apply an innovative approach - to combine two different genres - historical and psychological documentary, so that today's people look not only at the life of an extraordinary historical figure, but also at the depths of their own soul. During the event at the Palace of the Lords, the audience had the opportunity to see a moment captured during the filming and not yet edited from the constellation "Sandoris. Catherine is a bride". The people who filmed it shared a shocking experience of what it means to their thoughts and feelings, using modern psychological practices, from the 21st century. move back almost half a thousand years. The emotions of the people filming were so strong that the women were crying and angry, and the men were bowing their legs. "I'm afraid of going crazy," said Andrius during the filming, empathizing with the situation of one of Kotryna Jogailaitė's grooms - Ivan Rūščioj, the Grand Duke of Moscow, and telling the audience of the event about it.

 The dancers of the "Banchetto Musicale" collective helped to recreate the atmosphere of Catherine and John's wedding that took place 461 years ago in the Museum of the Palace of the Lords, and the event and the discussion about whether it is possible to recreate the portraits of historical figures today and how interesting the history of the queen who lived 500 years ago can be for modern people, moderated by historian and publicist Luka Lesauskaitė. The audience of the event was also invited to read excerpts from the novel "War Bride" about the wedding of Kotryna and John together with the author, and this event was complemented by an experiential voice journey - the performer Svajonė Grušnė sang a melody born " here and now".

 The experiential event was organized by the Museum of the Palace of Lords, the publishing house "Alma Littera", the writer Ilona Skujaitė and the director of the event and film Gitana Platakytė.

Catherine tempts more and more developers

These are the first creative attempts, which were awakened by the extraordinary story of Kotryna Jogailaitė. The experiential event "The Wedding of Royal Catherine Jogailaitė: Then and Now" is the first of a series of events dedicated to this historical figure. November 21 the same creative team will invite you to the leadership and history event "Kotryna Jogailaitė: the queen who connects the history of 4 countries" at the Palace of the Lords, where historians and leadership experts from Lithuania, Poland, Sweden and Finland will give lectures. They will also share their insights with the creators of the upcoming documentary.

 Due to its international nature, the story of Kotryna Jogailaitė is interesting not only for Lithuanians. For example, the book "War Bride" by I. Skujaitė, published in the spring, inspired Gerda Butkuvienė, a journalist and tourism communication specialist living in Sweden, to prepare a tourist route on both sides of the Baltic through 4 countries "in the footsteps of Kotryna Jogailaitė" (a digital map with photos can be found here: https://karonuotaka. lt/route).

 Designer Julija Janus has also announced her plans to organize an international traveling exhibition about two queens - Barbora Radvilaitė and Kotryna Jogailaitė.

Vytautas Abramauska's photo.

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