Special dramaturgical lecture! Rhodes College Professor David Sick discusses Sophocles, Oedipus, Freud, Greek culture, and why this story still moves us. Click here to listen. (7:57, 7.3 MB)
Cast & Crew
Oedipus: Tim Greer
Creon: Kinon Keplinger
Jocasta: Jeanna Juleson
Messenger: Andy Saunders
Chorus: Bill Andrews
Chorus: Jennifer Henry
Musician: Jonathan Saunders
Dramaturgy / Script Consulting: David Sick
Assistant Producer: James Antoine
Producer: Eric Sefton
Assistant Director: Amy Salerno Hale
Director: Robert Arnold
Artist: RahLeeCoh Ishakarah
Special Thanks to:
- Michael Towle
- Karen Strachan
“A bad man is exposed in just one day.”
The key word underlying Chatterbox’s production of Oedipus the King is accessible. In taking on this project, we sought to create a gripping, involving piece of theater that can be enjoyed by anyone — whether lifelong fans of the play or young students picking it up for the first time.
The cornerstone of such a production is, of course, the script, and I was overjoyed to come across Ian Johnston’s excellent contemporary translation. Dispensing with the “thee”s and “thou”s and the stilted language that gums up so many other translations, Dr. Johnston has crafted a version of the story that is immediately comprehensible while maintaining both its poetry and its horror. He generously allowed us to record his work, for which we are very grateful.
Accessibility underlies the casting choices as well. Amy and I deliberately set out to find actors with distinct (and distinctive) voices. This led us to call on some of my favorite Memphis actors, and in the process spurred us to make a few non-traditional choices. To my ear, all of them paid off beautifully.
The notion of accessibility also guided the rehearsal process, as the actors worked to mine and then convey the meaning of every line and phrase. Here we were aided immensely by Professor David Sick of Rhodes College, my go-to guy for all things Greek. His brief remarks on the play (available above) are a delightful palate cleanser after the intensity of the story itself, so be sure not to miss them.
Overall, my hope is that we’ve managed to combine these various ingredients in exactly the right way, so that you will not only enjoy this 2,400 year-old play but will get utterly absorbed in it.