Aquila Theatre has announced the New York Premiere of its production of Euripides' HERAKLES, translated and adapted by Peter Meineck and directed by Desiree Sanchez.
Previously seen at The White House and in Athens, Greece, HERAKLES is part of Aquila's ongoing Ancient Greeks/Modern Lives program. This innovative production uses filmed testimonies of United States veterans from World War II through the war in Afghanistan to form the chorus in the play.
Euripides takes the familiar myth of Herakles, one of the most famous of all legendary heroes, and creates a gripping tragedy about the return of a warrior who, instead of saving his own family, turns on them in a fit of madness. Euripides created this play for a society traumatized by years of brutal conflict, illustrating the effects of war on a family left at home.
HERAKLES asks difficult questions about how a man bloodied by combat might ever be reincorporated back into peacetime society. Though extreme in its content, HERAKLES articulates the strain of war, the effects of combat trauma and the psychology of a man driven to violence. HERAKLES is a story that speaks directly and urgently to people today.
The cast of HERAKLES features Brent Werzner (Trojan Women [After Euripides] at BAM) as Herakles, Arthur Bartow (Former Artistic Director, Tisch School of the Arts) as Amphitryon, Elizabeth Wakehouse (Wickets with 3 Legged Dog) as Megara, Brian Delate (Salome on Broadway) as Theseus/Ensemble, Nathan Flower (Much Ado About Nothing at 45 Bleecker, The Iliad at the Lucille Lortel Theatre) as Lykos, Ozzie Perlman as Son of Herakles and Sophie Wright as Daughter of Herakles.
Performances for this limited engagement will run March 27th through March 30th only. Performances will be held on Wednesday, Thursday, Friday and Saturday at 7:30pm. All performances will be held at the BAM Fisher (Fishman Space) located at 321 Ashland Place, Brooklyn, New York.
Tickets are available at www.bam.org/herakles, by calling (718) 636-4100, or by visiting the BAM Box Office at 30 Lafayette Avenue, Brooklyn, New York. For more information, visit www.aquilatheatre.com.
The United States has been fighting two wars for ten years and over 1.6 million men and women have served in Iraq or Afghanistan. As they have returned home, many have brought the war back with them and there has been a marked increase in suicides, depression and Post Traumatic Stress. Since 2010 Aquila has been leading a new program called Ancient Greeks/Modern Lives, which uses Greek classical texts to create public discussions on this difficult subject. In 2011 the project was invited to perform at the White House (Aquila's second visit) to help bring attention to these matters at the very highest level.
Through this public program Aquila has had the rare opportunity to meet many people with incredible stories to tell who are frequently so deeply moved by what they experience that it empowers them to relate their own stories. Veterans, spouses and family members tell of the horrors of war, the struggles they faced when they came home, their anger at politicians and media. It is a truly remarkable experience to witness such frank and truthful exchanges, and these experiences have shaped Aquila's production of Herakles.
The company has been developing this piece for over a year, presenting a staged workshop performance at Bovard Auditorium, University of Southern California, Los Angeles in March 2012 and performing at the Michael Cacoyannis Foundation in Athens Greece in July 2012.
Aquila Theatre's mission is to make classical works accessible to the greatest number. A play becomes 'classical' because we recognize that after a time it transcends the original culture it was created for. It retains the power to provoke the central question of what it means to be human. As a company dedicated to the classics, we feel a responsibility to acknowledge and explore newfound classical works. Founded in London in 1991 by Peter Meineck, Aquila is now based in New York City.