New World School of the Arts Takes Company of Eighteen to Greece for a Three-Show Presentation of Euripides' Women of Troy in Athens and on the Island of Spetses
MIAMI---Following the successful run at NWSAS’s Louise O. Gerrits Theatre in April of this year, the 18-member cast of Euripides’ WOMEN OF TROY, comprised of New World School of the Arts college juniors and recent Theater BFA graduates will travel to Greece to present the Kenneth McLeish English translation in three very different open air venues. Led by director Andrew Noble, the company will perform for some 350 theater enthusiasts including the Mayor of Zouberi. Starting at Zouberi beach, outside the city of Athens, the first show is scheduled for Friday, May 25 followed by a performance at the Anargyrious in the Island of Spetses on Sunday, May 27. The program will conclude with a Courtyard-setting presentation on Thursday, May 31 at the Athens Centre in Athens.
A tragic drama which had its premiere performance in 416 BC, the play remains among the most damning protests against the barbarity of wars which, with the current war in Iraq, speaks clearly to today’s conflict. “The situation is for all time...the Holocaust, Croatia, Iraq, Africa...but as director, I chose to evoke the era of World War One...ironically, the war to end all wars”, declared Noble. Sustaining his personal premise that the fact “that wars still persist in the 21st Century is unconscionable”, Noble has not set his “Troy” in a particular time period but is using images that evoke different eras from the grace of the Edwardian period preceding 1914 to the contemporary setting of an eroding ocean-side beach, a “no-man’s land,” where the women stand as a group to face the brutality of an occupying force easily defined as thugs and riot police.
Instrumental in creating the period look are Estela Vrancovich's costumes, which were used in the original NWSA staging and will be carried by the group on flights to Greece. Lighting, sound and props will be acquired on-site to keep production costs to a minimum.
Currently a Professor at NWSA, Andy Noble is a British actor, director, and teacher. Educated in England at the University of Birmingham College of Education and the East 15 Acting School. Noble founded The Orchard Theatre Company, under the aegis of the Dartington Hall Trust/Beaford Centre and was director of Te Kura Toi Whakaari (The New Zealand Drama School). Awarded a Director’s Bursary by the Arts Council of Great Britain, Noble subsequently became Artistic /Managing Director of The Plough Arts Centre, programming independent and mainstream cinema, theatre, and art exhibitions. In Miami, he was Assistant Director in the Education Department at Coconut Grove Playhouse, and on the faculty of UM’s Department of Theatre Arts. He was named Best Actor in a Play by The New Times for the title role in Brian Friel’s The Faith Healer. Most recently he has played the roles of King Lear and Faust, and directed Goldoni’s Il Campiello, the musical The Mystery of Edwin Drood, and Pirandello's Six Characters in Search of an Author.
In addition to the performances, the group, which will be accompanied by a lecturer, will have a full itinerary of visits to major archeological sites and museums including the ancient theatres at Argos and Epidaurus, the palace and tomb of Agamemnon at Mycenae, Ancient Corinth, The Temple of Apollo at Delphi, and of course, the Akropolis and National Museum in Athens. To help finance the trip, many of the NWSA cast members have taken out loans to extend their travels after the Greek leg with explorations throughout Europe.
Hosted by the Athens Centre, this is the third play NWSA takes to Greece. Seamus Heaney's The Cure at Troy and a version of Faust Ur-Faust, both starring Andres Noble, were presented prior to 2001.
For more information about New World School of the Art’s Theater Program, please call (305) 237-3541 or visit www.mdc.edu/nwsa.
Photo Caption: NWSA College BFA graduate Laura Alvarado in a scene of Women of Troy, April 1, 2007 at Louise O. Gerrits Theatre.