Valters Sīlis  I Had a Cousin


Time when criminals ruled Baltic countries seems to be the time of the past. Nowadays it seems that these criminals have been legalizing their organizations and they all have moved into legitimate business, but it might not be so.

“I Had a Cousin” is created by director Valters Sīlis collaborating with playwright Rasa Bugavičute-Pēce. Rasa is half Latvian half Lithuanian. This is a story about her and her Lithuanian cousin Deimantas. They grew up together. She grew up to be a writer. He became one of the leading figures in the Kaunas mafia, who was killed in 2015 at the age of 27 by two Estonian hitmen.

This is a very personal story, told by the perspective of Rasa and observes how the cousin got more and more involved in organised crime. The performance has an aim to get a glimpse of understanding what are the social circumstances and what are the very personal motivations to become the king of the world in this way even if it means that your life can be very short.


Valters Sīlis (1985) graduated from Latvian Academy of Culture in 2010 and since has been working both in small independent theatres and on the big stage of the National Theatre. From early on, Valters became known for his documentary theatre productions that illuminated critical moments in the recent Latvian history and focusing on urgent socio-political and ecological issues locally and globally (“Legionnaires” 2011, “National Development Plan” 2013, “Lost Antarctica” 2015, “3 Musketeers – East of Vienna” 2016). Valters' inquisitive, informal and honest attitude is also present in his latest work that turns greater attention to micro-histories and choices of individuals in specific contexts, often focusing on young people (“Being Nationalist” 2017, “Boy Who Saw in the Darkness”, 2019).


On stage: Rea Lest & Henrik Kalmet 

Director: Valters Sīlis (LV)

Dramaturg: Rasa Bugavičute-Pēce (LV)

Translator: Contra

Scenographer: Uģis Bērziņš (LV)

Video designer: Laura Romanova

Lightning designer: Priidu Adlas

Sound designer: Raido Linkmann

Stage manager: Tuuli Raadik

Producer: Liisa Liksor 

Produced by SA Vaba Lava 

Cancelled premiere 8.05.2020 at Vaba Lava Tallinn

Duration: 1 hour 40 min, without interval

Performance is in Estonian