Greek ancient drama is reviving this summer through the performance Electra of Euripides at Badminton theatre. The play is translated in 6 languages, so foreign visitors of Athens, have the opportunity to attend an authentic performance of Greek ancient drama.
The director of the play is one of the greatest directors in Greece, the famous academic Spyros Evaggelatos. The original translation of the play is from K. X Myris and the sets are designed from Yiorgos Patsas.
The “Melina Merkouri Award” winner Marina Aslanoglou plays the role of Electra together with the highly acclaimed Reni Pittaki and Yannis Voglis and a cast of other renowned actors holding honors in theatrical performance. Theatre lovers from all over the world can attend this performance right in the heart of Athens, in Badminton theatre, which will proudly present Electra of Euripides to public from 12th June until 26th September.
Review of the performance
The performance of Electra of Euripides, at Badminton theatre, represents worthily the word of the great Greek tragedian Euripides.
Spyros Evaggelatos managed to make successfully the connection between the original ancient script of the play and modern times.
Despite the fact that the translation of K. X Myris is very close to the origin script, the performance has some modern elements such as the fact that a play of Greek ancient drama is performed in a close theatre. Traditionally these performances are played in open theatres. Badminton theatre is a close theatre so that is a new and very interesting approach of ancient drama.
Furthermore, the sets were really modern constructions made of materials that looked like iron in black and silver colors. The little house of Electra in the fields, where she was living poorly with her husband, was a simple and functional construction that gave someone the impression of a bent iron box. That could be symbolic of the prison of feelings that Electra was captured. The sets were in general very functional, helping the actors making nice entrances.
The leading actress that plays the role of Electra is the well known in Greek public, Marina Aslanoglou, who is a “Melina Merkouri Award” winner. This is the first time that Mrs. Aslanoglou plays a leading role in ancient drama and she was absolutely amazing. She has successfully became Electra, the audience was able to feel her anger, her thirst of revenge, her joy when she met her brother and her desperation when her mother was dead due to her and her brother. She was playing with her soul without becoming excessive.
Thanassis Kourlampas, who played Orestes was also really good with very fluent and expressive speech articulation. Words are not enough about Mr. Yiannis Voglis (the old man who raised Orestes) and Reni Pittaki (Klytaimnistra). Two of the most important theatre actors in Greece, who flooded the stage with their talend.
A few words on the case
After the murder of Agamemnon by his wife Klytaimnistra and her lover Aigisthos, Aigisthos who became the king of Argos, is marrying Electra (daughter of Klytaimnistra and Agamemnon) to a poor villager due to his fear that if Electra marry someone rich with power, their children will revenge the death of Agamemnon. But the villager was a kind and honest man who didn’t want to take advantage of the situation, so he respected Electra and never slept with her. The brother of Electra is Orestes, who was banished out of the city of Argos. One day Orestes returns to Argos with his friend Pylades with one and only goal; meet his sister Electra and kill Aigisthos and his mother Klytaimnistra. The two siblings are not capable of recognizing each other due to the fact that they were separated when they were little children. The old man who was living at the palace when Orestes was a little child and raised him, helps the siblings to recognize each other. Then together they decide how to implement their plan to kill the murderers of their father. Electra and Orestes with the help of the old man who raised Orestes succeed and finally killed Aigisthos and their mother. But right after that Orestes is hunted by Erinyes, creatures that represent guiltiness. Then Dioskouroi, who were a pair of semi – gods that protected the sea voyagers and quests, appear and tell Orestes to go to Athens on a trial. Orestes is going to prove that he is innocent and that the murder he committed was after god’s Apollo will for justice. Dioskouroi also tell Electra to marry Pylades and live somewhere outside Argos.
Electra is a play that Euripides wrote in 413 BC, after the other two tragedies with the same story, Choiforous of Aischylos (458 BC) and Electra of Sophocles (around 430 BC)
A few words about Badminton Theatre
The performance area of the stage measures 30 meters width by 18 meters depth with a 15.50 meter height providing ample room for spectacular events. It is equipped with advanced theater technology including a ΒΑΤΑLPHA computer controlled fly system with 46 flying pipes, all the basic lighting instruments, 200 ADB dimmers, Congo ETC lightning console, 5 led screen for subtitles and video projectors. The stage is designed to facilitate easy access to all the trucks carrying theatre equipment.
At full capacity the auditorium seats 2.500 people in an amphitheater arrangement without obstructed view for all the spectators. The seats were provided by one of the leaders in the industry, the French company Quinette. A full size pit to host a symphony orchestra has been incorporated partially under the stage and extending several rows under the existing seats. When an orchestra is needed for the performance, the front rows of seats are removed to expose the pit. As an added feature enhancing the capability to host smaller performances and events, the auditorium is designed to reduce the seating capacity for a more intimate audience by a drop wall removing from view the remaining seats without reducing the ease of access into the house (note: in any case not less than 1.000 seats).
Electra of Euripides will continue performances until 26th September at Badminton theatre, translated in 6 languages.
Days and hours of performances:
Tuesday – Saturday 20:30
Zone A 45€, Zone B 35€, Zone C 25€, for students 15€
Badminton Theatre address:
Alsos Stratou, 15773 Goudi, contact number: +30 2108840600