ANTIGONE Review

A shameful family history. An irrevocable decree. An obligation to one’s flesh and blood. A girl, forced by faith to become a woman.

This year, second year Western student, Camille Intson, fearlessly chose to direct Antigone, a subtle yet riveting Greek Tragedy about a girl who insists on giving her brother a proper burial despite the death sentence set on it by her uncle, King Creon. The play is comprised of surprising dialogues, three-dimensional characters, and tense situations. After weaving one’s way through Fanshawe’s gallery of dramatically lit, still photographs--now on display in the Arts Project--audiences stumble into a small room further suspended in time than Fanshawe’s photographs: the stage floor is nearly barren save for a long table and two chairs; this sparse furniture stands in front of a screen displaying videographer Erik Bajzert’s looping, blue-tinged projection of labyrinthine film sequences ranging in theme from rehearsals to madness. Overhead, fluttering pages from the source text dangle from silver threads, spinning and reflecting light like wind chimes or fractured shards of a lost ancient world that can only be revivified through re-enactment. All the while, an all-pervasive, throbbing red glare tinges viewers with the unsettling feeling that they, and not Antigone, are the subjects of this dramatic inquisition.

True to this production’s roots in ancient Greece, characters enter the stage in a somber procession, holding flickering candles and wearing expressionless white masks. The sound of a beating drum sets the solemn tone that for the most part—though not entirely—characterizes the production. Once all have entered, one by one, the chorus introduces each character to the audience and removes their mask. The chorus--a balanced mixture of males and females, expertly outfitted in unobtrusive, modern black clothing--serve as our guides and often serve as manifestations of characters’ thoughts. The fluidity with which the chorus turn from addressing audience members to the cast erodes the boundaries between the two, creating an effect of a shared single consciousness. While humorous at times, the cho