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The Department of Theatre and Dance will present a radical new production of Sophocles’ Antigone NOW this spring online (details to come). The classic tragedy will be performed free online and available to view for a 24-hour period on May 23.
Antigone NOW Sign-up list, registrants will be emailed performance information on May 22.
“When it was clear that COVID 19 would impact our campus, I was moved to consider how we could allow this moment in history to positively impact our learning community and our intended production of Antigone,” said Margaret Laurena Kemp, co-director and associate professor of theatre and dance. “As an artist and instructor, my call to action is to model collaboration, research, creativity and community engagement through performance and theatre making practices. For me this is the soul of the value of theatre and dance at an R1 Institution. Our hybrid approach to Antigone, which is now called Antigone NOW answers the call.”
A radical new performance film of Sophocles’ Antigone, devised from the translation by Seamus Heaney.
A world in strife, a nation in fear, a woman stranded, in grief. Award-winning Irish director and UC Davis Granada Artist-in-Residence Sinéad Rushe will co-direct with Margaret Laurena Kemp, associate professor of theatre and dance, a ground-breaking contemporary response to the classical play, Antigone.
“Made collectively in the USA, UK, Japan and Singapore using mobile phones, Ipads and video, this all-female cast and creative team will create a stunning new film that confronts the isolation of our moment,” said Rushe. ”A culturally diverse ensemble of female identifying actors, each in seclusion, will evoke the breadth of Antigone’s defiance against devastating loss.”
The creative team includes spoken word artist Dahlak Brathwaite (B.A. theatre and dance ‘08), movement consultant/choreographer Roger Ellis and Assistant Professor Lishan Az, digital media advisor.
This production is part of Kemp and Rushe’s ongoing creative exploration of character through polyphonic vocalisation and collective composition. Additionally, Kemp is exploring authorship, spatial politics and witnessing. They posit that character, like a place or a country or a nation state, is not a point of departure but a construct or result, the assumption of an ever-contested role.