Venue: Scenic Stage at TFTV Campus East, University of York
Review by: Julia Pattison
The Third Year Theatre Students at the Department of Theatre, Film and Television, have re-imagined a stunning new version of the classic Greek tragedy Antigone, breathing new life into it and creating a physical language that could be understood by all, whether you were familiar with the text or not.
Director Minna Davies, working closely with a four person Dramaturgy Team (Abby Coppard, Tom Hooper, Jamie Richards and Jack Doddy), and her talented cast of nine actors, involved the audience in this tragic tale (translated by Anne Carson) right from the very beginning.
It was a good idea not to have an interval, as that would have broken the spell so carefully cast by the Company.
The power of a long pause was played to perfection by the Chorus; their physicality was literally breath taking, with stunning synchronicity. Members of the chorus also played principal roles to excellent effect.
The set design and lighting complemented the growing sense of impending doom as the new ruler of Thebes, Kreon (Edward Foster) thrashed about blindly trying to protect the order he’d decreed, arguing fiercely with his niece Antigone (Rebecca Storey) when she was brought before him after being caught attempting to give the rotting corpse of her brother Polyneices a proper burial, disobeying his cruel decree.
You both hated and pitied Kreon at the same time, such was the power of Edward’s performance, while Rebecca played the part of Antigone with such passion and earnestness, that when the Messenger later delivered the news of her fate, just as Kreon had been made to see the error of his ways, you wanted to join the cast in their lamentations.
A vibrant, engaging and powerful interpretation of Sophocles’ tragic tale.