CULTURE

Epidaurus plays host to ‘Women of Trachis’

Victor Adrittis, director of the State Theater of Northern Greece’s latest production, Sophocles’ «Women of Trachis,» being staged at the Ancient Theater of Epidaurus on Friday and Saturday, said it was chosen because «this is a fascinating play.» At a news conference this week, he also said, «It is wonderful that such a rarely performed tragedy is being brought to the stage.» The play examines the final years of Hercules’ life, after he has been at war with Eurytus, destroyed Omphale and taken Iole, incurring the wrath of his wife Deianeira, who sends him the chiton of the centaur Nessus soaked in poison, causing his death. The production stars Akyllas Karazisis and Aneza Papadopoulou. The music has been written by Costas Vomvolos, who uses a live orchestra to accentuate the nuances of the themes, and the choreography is by the acclaimed Greek artist Constantinos Rigos. «For the past 50 years, we have been venturing into the revival of ancient Greek plays,» said Adrittis. «Everything has been tried, every proposal put forth. But none are new or novel, or daring, or conventional. The time has come to start all over again,» added the director. «’The Women of Trachis’ is a play that really moved us. It transcends the rules that usually apply to ancient drama. First of all, we find ourselves in a rugged landscape, somewhere in the mountains, where Hercules has left his wife Deianeira. The untamed nature leads us to imagine a play that goes beyond the conventions of civilization. The place reflects the soul. «Another particularity (we wanted to exploit), is the manner in which the characters’ psyche is presented in relief. It has a very modern characters outline. These are characters that are full of contradictions,» he said. He added, «Last, but not least, I selected ‘The Women of Trachis’ for the multitude of tones, the types of theater it contains; from the esoteric anguish of Deianeira to the explosive Hercules.» Tickets for the State Theater of Northern Greece’s performance of «The Women of Trachis» at Epidaurus on Friday and Saturday are available from the Hellenic Festival Box Office (39 Panepistimiou, tel 210.928.2000), or from the theater itself, though advanced reservations are recommended.