Fourth Annual Greek Play Production: Euripides' Helen

Drawing of a crane‌On April 20, 21, 22, 25, and 27, 2017, the Department of Classics and General Humanities is sponsoring its fourth annual student- and community-based Montclair State Greek Theater Group production -- the play this year is Helen by Euripides, the third of the "big three" tragic playwrights of 5th century BCE Athens; it will be danced, sung, and acted outdoors in the Montclair State University Amphitheater at 2 p.m. each afternoon, weather permitting. The event is free and open to the public. Accessible seating available.

Visit the play's website for complete details.

The play is directed by Jackie Knollhuff and Jeri Fogel and features original music and dance. The translation into Engish by Diane Arnson Svarlien is new, courtesy of Hackett Books.

Actors in an outdoor amphitheaterAbout the storyline
There was an ancient Greek story (told by Stesichorus and Herodotus) that Helen, whose face supposedly launched a thousand Greek ships to their destruction, in fact never went to Troy at all — that instead she spent the entire war in Egypt.

Euripides took this story and ran with it, creating a lovely, exciting, girl-hero positive, hair-breadth-escape story with a happy ending, his play, Helen. Helen herself, waiting anxiously in Egypt while the War takes its course due to her phantom, finally receives word ... and the play's story takes its start from there...

Image of actors with a arbor trellis in an outdoor amphitheater

Off campus performance
In March, the group traveled to Englewood, New Jersey, to perform a few scenes at the renowned Lillian Booth Actors Home, where more than a hundred lifetime career performers and tech folks from the theater and film industry live.

Sponsored by the Department of Classics and General Humanities, with substantial help from the College of Humanities and Social Sciences, the Department of Theatre and Dance, Kasser Theater, the NY Classical Club, and the Classical Association of Atlantic States.

-- Photos above by Joanna Madloch of the 2016 Greek play production of Andromache also by Euripides.