School of Visual & Performing Arts

Theatre Arts : Theatre Arts Faculty

Adelka Polak

[University Assistant]

Adelka Polak

Adelka Polak is the founder and Artistic Director of Sova Dance and Puppet Theater. She is a dancer, puppeteer, mask-performer and movement director whose work has traveled to Denmark, Bulgaria, the Czech Republic, and Turkey. She worked with Squonk Opera who went “from junkyards to Broadway” and performed at Lincoln Center Outdoors and LaMama, E.T.C. with the Czechoslovak-American Marionette Theater of NYC. Ms. Polak was featured on CPTV’s “Spotlight on the Arts” with Masque Theatre in a segment nominated for a cultural Emmy in 2010 and produced by Ed Wierzbiecki. At the Ellen Stewart Theater she performed puppets from the Henson Workshop in an original devised production entitled “Crane: On Earth, In Sky” led by Heather Henson & Ty Defoe.  The show returns in February 2018 to LaMama E.T.C.

Sova Dance & Puppet Theater was founded on the principle of the necessity for various artistic disciplines to interact as depicted in the company’s premiere show “Branches” first performed at Sandglass Theater in 2013. In 2011 the Ridgefield Guild of Artists selected Ms. Polak as artist-in-residence with sculptor Justin Perlman, who collectively integrated visual art and dance into the Ridgefield Symphony Orchestra 2012 Spring Concert working with James Robey Dance and the Ridgefield Conservatory of Dance’s Contemporary Dance Ensemble. Her work mixes media such as video, fabric, objects, and natural materials with organic movement.  In 2015 she taught a workshop at UConn for the Puppeteers of America National Puppetry Festival held there.  Ms. Polak is also the Vice President of the CT Guild of Puppetry.

Ms. Polak is a prolific teaching artist, going into classrooms to teach the arts & sciences through puppetry.  A dynamic program that she co-created with Two Coyotes Wilderness School called “Wild Theater” integrates nature and the performing arts, inviting young participants to create an original story and production together.  In another program that is based on her original performance “Tales from the Wild” students get to create their own imaginative depictions of the seasons in CT.  She works as a Teaching Artist in Hartford, CT public schools, is on staff/faculty at Western Connecticut State University’s Theater Department, and taught Contemporary/Improvisational Dance at the Ridgefield Conservatory of Dance. She has a B.A. in Theater and Cultural Studies with honors from Chatham University in Pittsburgh, PA.