Preview: Electra: Haimara
This classical tragedy rewritten for the modern day comes to the ADC this week.
In a rewrite of the classic Greek tragedy, Irisa Kwok has created a Week One ADC Late Show that is “dark, exciting and tragic.”
Set in the aftermath of the Trojan War, Electra calls on her long-lost brother to aid her in avenging the death of their murdered father. The play may be familiar to Classicists, but Kwok’s version aims to platform the “perspective of the women who push the story forward,” as Natina Rose, the Director, told us.
Rose also explained the aim of the show is to “explore and bring to light the trials and tribulations of a girl on the cusp of adulthood in the shadows of war.” Having been written and directed to place women at the centre of the show, the play is a breath of fresh air in the classical tradition.
Not only does the play foreground the importance of women as narrative voices, but the reasons behind why the play was chosen have also generated fascinating themes.
Asking Kwok about what led them to write the play, they told us they had been “captivated by the historical miscommunications in its interpretations.” The play explores themes of “wounds of imperialism, snowballed family trauma and the queer body,” so the story has great potential to resonate with audiences.
The play intends to explore the ambiguity of morality, with Assistant Director Audrey Hammer highlighting that right and wrong are not “black and white,” and that there “are reasons for actions from all people.” After seeing the show, this play sounds like it will have you, “discussing who was in the right, or whether there was someone in the right.”
Chatting with the cast, we spoke to some of them to hear about the play, the process and everything else Electra.
Blossom Durr, who plays the titular protagonist, spoke of the “challenge” and “honour” it has been to “step into her shoes.” She is excited to perform on the ADC stage for “the first time,” and we cannot wait to witness her debut performance.
There are also some wonderfully written lines in the play, as the cast and crew shared their personal favourites.
Durr references the line, “together we can kill…” which is ominous indeed. Mia Glencrose, one of the cast members, revealed their favourite line is “beware, you may speak yourself into oblivion.” Hammer’s favourite is “don’t ruin your life in sheer stupidity.”
With such intriguing lines, we cannot wait to watch the rest of the play.
Rob Monterio, who plays Electra’s brother, Orestes, has informed us that audiences will be treated to, “ beautiful ballet and dancing scenes.” Ballet at the ADC Theatre is reason enough to see the show.
From what we’ve found out, the writing is beautiful, the production team have executed it perfectly, and the acting will be incredible.
Whether you are a Greek myth enthusiast, or just enjoy excellent theatre, Electra: Haimara is an Easter term must-see. Kwok promises there is something for everybody – “renaissance drama, reality show bloodbaths, queer theory and hauntology.”
Before your exam revision becomes too intense, why not go and see this exciting piece of new student writing?
Electra: Haimara is on at the ADC at 11 pm from Wednesday 3rd of May until Saturday 6th of May. Get your tickets here!
Feature image credits: Alexander Velody