‘Trojan Women’ travel to Ancient Theater of Troy

The performance of Euripides’ tragedy «Trojan Women,» recently held in the Ancient Theater of Troy, began and ended with a sentence by the god Poseidon, interpreted by Yiannis Thomas. The small theater was full both on the day of the performance but also on rehearsal night, the evening before. It was the first time a Greek tragedy has been staged at Troy’s open-air theater. The Diadromi Theater production succeeded in traveling to Turkey thanks to the efforts of Costas Balas and Lefteris Plaskovitis, with help and support from the Ministry of Tourism and the Hellenic Festival, and the moving hospitality of the Municipality of Canakkale, which hosted a large group of people (the actors, staff, journalists and escorts must have come close to 140). «I am calling you all friends and brothers and sisters, because that is how this region unites us. We are from Troy. You are from Greece. We have fought against each other, but we are all here for peace… We share friendship and peace. Whatever we do together will have a great result, for the entire world,» said the Canakkale Mayor Ulgur Gokhan at the press conference. The director of the Canakkale Municipality press office was always on hand and his help was much appreciated by the Greek group. The sole representative of the Greek State was Ministry of State Secretary Panos Livadas, while the absence of Tourism Minister Dimitris Avramopoulos left unanswered questions. The performance at Troy’s ancient theater was a unique experience, both for the actors and the spectators, perhaps due to the fact that the region’s historical tension is still strongly felt. Those who had previously seen the show at the Ancient Theater of Epidaurus on June 18 and 19 described the production as different and more well structured. Directed by Diagoras Chronopoulos, the cast was led by Anna Vagena, Yiannis Vouros, Peggy Trikalioti, Tania Trypi and Dimitris Lignadis. It was a well-done performance with some changes made to tone it down, such as Trikalioti not showing her breasts as she did at Epidaurus, but only removing her veils. Seeing the show for the first time, the prevailing impression was of an excellent Chorus, always present on stage thanks to Natassa Zouka’s beautiful choreography. Stavros Xarchakos’s music and Yiannis Metzikoff’s costumes contributed nicely to the tragedy’s overall atmosphere. This visit as a whole had many different facets and the performance was merely the excuse. The attitude on both sides was to get to know one another with a possible collaboration in mind, not only in theater but also in more far-reaching affairs. The mayor of Canakkale suggested the organization of a joint festival at the Ancient Theater of Troy. This suggestion would require a lot of difficult follow through, but it is indicative of a certain attitude and desire. Leaving Canakkale, the impressions were very good: regarding the Turks’ hospitality, the changing image of modern Turkey, the familiarity and the close ties that were felt.