L’Opera di Pulcinella – 1st Day of Urban Dionysia

The Διονύσια τὰ ἀστικά ‘Urban Dionysia’, are the last Dionysian celebrations of the Hellenic lunar calendar. They close the yearly events in boreal spring - austral fall - with other rituals, dances and performances. Each day of Dionysia, I introduce in a few words, a piece of performance art from anyone in the world, at … Continue reading L’Opera di Pulcinella – 1st Day of Urban Dionysia

Nāgānanda – Third Day of the Lenaia 2022

In the classical work Nāgānanda supposedly written by emperor Harṣavardhana, the conventional story of a love encounter between a king and a princess brings us to the Malaya Mountains where princess Malayavatī is musically worshipping her goddess Gaurī. We learn that the goddess visited her in her dreams to tell her she would marry the … Continue reading Nāgānanda – Third Day of the Lenaia 2022

Hippolytus – Second Day of the Lenaia 2022

In Euripides’ Hippolytus, Phaedra, Theseus’ wife, falls in love with her stepson Hippolytus. The young man is son of Theseus and an Amazon. He is not moved by women and his pride is to worship Artemis, goddess of hunting, wildlife and chastity. His disdain for goddess Aphrodite and for the love she inspires in men, … Continue reading Hippolytus – Second Day of the Lenaia 2022

Waiting for Godot – 1st Day of the Lenaia 2022

‘Think!’ This is the last word of the five commands that Pozzo gives to his slave Lucky, before the latter starts his long and absurd monologue. This happens around the last third of the first act in Samuel Beckett’s Waiting for Godot. Five commands are half way through the ‘Ten Commandments’, but for each of … Continue reading Waiting for Godot – 1st Day of the Lenaia 2022

Introduction to the Lenaia 2022

This is the third time I’m introducing the Lenaia festival and I assume the roots of this Dionysian celebration of drama arts don’t really need any more explanation or description. The four days that constitute the Λήναια [Lēnaia] are the 12th, 13th, 14th and 15th days of the month of Γαμηλιών [Gamēliōn] - which is … Continue reading Introduction to the Lenaia 2022

Samonios 21

Between stalks of grassPhosphorescent greenIn a dark clearingWith air cold as glass Hear the sound of bonesClicking with the chillStarting a quiet drillLike ossicle stones You mustBewareOf theFact thatAppearance is not always truth my friend Behind the cold gravesShady shapes in brownHoods are kneeling downWith lamenting waves See the parias’ tearsFalling for citiesWhose hypocrisiesHave burnt … Continue reading Samonios 21

Mégâ Çiva Râtri

Djeʈa ʈewi gueleddjeloprewaho pawitestholêguelêwelembyo lembitambhoudjengo toungo malikamɖemeɖɖemeɖɖemeɖɖeme--trinado weɖɖemerweyemtchekaro tchenɖetanɖewontenôtou noh Çiwoh Çiwom De la forêt de mes cheveuxde l’eau descend mouille mon couoù s’insinue serpent rosaireet je fais taper le tambour‘demeddemeddemeddeme’puis je frappe de mes pieds d’hommele rythme par lequel tous sontrassasiés de Çiva Çiva Sous le talon de mes cothurneste voilà prisonnier, humainoù tu … Continue reading Mégâ Çiva Râtri

The Bacchae – 4th Day of Lenaia 2021

When the god of madness entered his native city of Thebes, expecting that his royal family would acknowledge him, he was rejected by king Pentheus, by the king’s mother Agave and by his aunts, but not by Cadmus, grandfather of both the god and the king. Angry, the god introduced his cult of madness to … Continue reading The Bacchae – 4th Day of Lenaia 2021

The Imaginary Invalid – 3rd Day of Lenaia 2021

When Argan – a complete hypocondriac – decides to make the daughter of his defunct wife, marry a young but unattractive medical doctor, he acknowledges that his goal is personal and selfish: he’s afraid of sickness and death, and wants to have a doctor in his family, so he can be assured of getting the … Continue reading The Imaginary Invalid – 3rd Day of Lenaia 2021

Shakuntalā – 2nd Day of Lenaia 2021

Since the Mahābhārata epic, Shakuntalā is famous as the girl who married king Dushyanta. In Kālidāsa’s work, she is an abandoned girl who encounters the king during his hunt. After they marry, king Dushyanta gives Shakuntalā a ring as a proof of their wedding when she will join him in the capital. Unfortunately, a curse … Continue reading Shakuntalā – 2nd Day of Lenaia 2021