The award-winning Israeli director, Yair Sherman Ensemble, presents Euripides’ Bacchae in a contemporary reading of the play, an exciting directing approach and a highly aesthetic artistic result, in the production that gave him the “Golden Porcupine – Director of the Year”, for 2016.
Bacchae is one of the greatest tragedy, ever written by Euripides, (484 - 406BC) last of classical Athens three great tragic dramatists, following Aeschylus and Sophocles.
Dionysus, also called Bacchus was the son of Zeus, king of gods and Semele, a daughter of Cadmus, king of Thebes.
Dionysus, the Olympian god of wine, vegetation, pleasure, festivity, ecstasy, madness and passion, returns to his birthplace in Thebes, in order to clear his mother's name and to punish the disrespectful Thebes for refusing to allow people to give him honours and worship. The background to his return is presented in the prologue, in which Dionysus tells the story of his mother, Semele, who had an affair with Zeus, and became pregnant. As revenge, Zeus's jealous wife Hera tricked Semele into asking Zeus to appear in his divine form. Zeus, too powerful for a mortal to behold, emerged from the sky as a bolt of lightning and burnt Semele to a cinder. He managed, however, to rescue his unborn son Dionysus and stitched the baby into his thigh. Semele's family claimed that she had been struck by lightning for lying about Zeus and that her child, the product of an illegal affair, had died with her, maligning her name and rejecting the young god Dionysus.
The action of the play begins with Dionysus's return to Thebes, disguised as the stranger, accompanied by a band of bacchants, to punish the family for their treatment of his mother and their refusal to offer him sacrifices. During Dionysus's absence, Semele's father, Cadmus, had handed the kingdom over to his proud grandson Pentheus. It was Pentheus's decision to not allow the worship of Dionysus in Thebes.
In this enigmatic play of game and transformations, myth and history meets the poetic rebirth, while unexpectedly the tragic, the dramatic and the theatrical element coexist. Dionysus abolishes the boundaries between people, social order, gender, age, and even the difference between human and divine qualities. The city that denies his existence will experience the power and dominance of God through a mysterious, dark and bloody nightmare.
Bacchae - 26th & 28 July, with Greek and English subtitles.
€10 │ €5 (Students, Senior Citizens, National Guard, Citizens with unemployment benefits). Free admission to persons with disabilities.
Info: 70002414 │www.greekdramafest.com
Performances start at 21:00
Please arrive at the theatre before 20:45