Yannis Kalavrianos directs NTNG’s summer production, Iphigenia in Aulis by Euripides, in a new translation by Pantelis Boukalas and with Anthi Efstratiadou, the 2016 recipient of the Melina Mercouri theatre award, in the role of Iphigenia.
The Greek fleet ready to sail to Troy, remains stuck in Aulis as the wind has lulled. In order for the wind to blow, it is imperative to sacrifice Iphigenia, the daughter of the commander of the Achaeans, Agamemnon. Faced with a horrific dilemma, torn between his daughter and his people, Agamemnon nevertheless decides to proceed to the sacrifice, dismissing the pleas of his wife Clytemnestra, Iphigenia, Achilles, even his own brother, Menelaus. Iphigenia ultimately reconciles with her tragic fate and accepts her heroic death for her country’s sake. In Iphigenia in Aulis, the tension between the public and the private, the male and the female, the polis and the family, generates characters who do not hesitate to cross the line.
Alexandra Boussoulenga, Rania Yfantidou
Elina Eftaxia, Isabela Tudorache
Marleen Verschuuren, Maria Lazaridou
Euripides, at the end of his life, offers us a work of transitions and successive dilemmas, brim-full of irony and unexpected comic moments; a text that continues to raise a plethora of discussions among literature, drama and theatre scholars.
Like the other works that deal with the house of Atreides, it contains characters stigmatised with an ancestral curse. So, we know in advance that things are not likely to evolve smoothly.
Impregnated with the atmosphere of his era, the doddering Athenian democracy and the upcoming defeat in the Peloponnesian War, the work depicts a world where faith in heroism and patriarchal values has been shaken. A world in which the mob becomes a protagonist of the action, while the heroes, unstable, full of weaknesses, petty, cowardly, and with constant changes of opinion, are precipitated. Only the struggle for power remains, in a different form each time. The conflict between public and private, man and woman, city and family, generate heroes who do not hesitate to cross the line.
We are not dealing with a romantic story of self-sacrifice, or a simple patriotic drama, but with a case of constant struggle and imbalance, a story of reversals, with Euripides stating the obvious: in every war the older generation sacrifices the younger and there are many among the young who accept their destruction.
It’s not just the wind that has ceased in Aulis but life itself. Everyone is waiting for something to happen. And very soon, this will be the abolition of logic.
The National Theatre of Northern Greece (NTNG) is currently the largest theatre and wider cultural organisation in our country. Comprising of 4 winter venues, 2 open-air theatres, and also organising Greek and international tours, it functions as an active cultural hub since 1961.
The new institutional framework of the NTNG was passed in 1994, and according to that, the theatre is administrated by a seven-member Board of Directors and an Artistic Director.
The NTNG is supervised and subsidised by the Ministry of Culture and Sports.
The NTNG has been a member of the Union of Theatres of Europe (www.ute-net.org) since May 1996 and served as a member of its Board of Directors until 2013. The NTNG is also a member of the International Theatre Institute.
The annual repertoire of the NTNG combines in-house productions, co-productions with other theatre organizations and special tributes. The NTNG also hosts Greek and international guest performances. Its activities expand well into other cultural domains, such as education, literature, fine arts, exhibitions, conferences and international festivals, educational theatre programmes and other social activities.
Based on the core belief that education and culture are basic necessities and wishing to remain a theatre open to society, the NTNG implements in practice a strategy founded on the following: