In Greece, its revival is connected with the first steps of the newly founded independent state and the need to associate with the history of the country. Since the first professional performance in 1867 at the Odeion of Herod Atticus in Athens, the revival of ancient drama performances in our country completes almost 1 ½ century. During this period, only in Greece, more than 900 performances of ancient drama have been staged!
The chorus from the performance Hippolytus by Euripides, National Theatre of Greece. Epidaurus, 1954. Photographic Archive of the National Theatre of Greece.
The time, the place, the reason, the way, the causes, the persons may change, however, the questions preoccupying humans remain common and the speech of the Classical poets sounds always timely. The meanings of the plays, with their range and wealth, become threads that lead to different approaches and interpretations.
The Birds by Aristohanes directed by Karolos Koun. Archive of the Greek Arts Theatre Karolos Koun.
The history of the revival is therefore an exciting narration. Every stop has a special value, as the conditions differ from time to time. They reflect trends and concerns of the Modern Greek society, they express ideological quests. Sometimes they even hide political considerations. All the above mentioned and the warm response of the audience prove that the ancient theatre, alive and inexhaustible, never stops conversing with the present.
Bacchae by Euripides, Attis theatre, directed by Theodoros Terzopoulos. Fribourg, Ihnenhof Alte Uni, 1987.