Get a glimpse into the distant past with the ancient Greek dramas you can now find in Infobase’s On Demand streaming video collections. Subscribers to Films On Demand for colleges and universities, Classroom Video On Demand for middle and high schools, and Access Video On Demand for public libraries now have access to a unique collection from Macmillan Films that includes productions and analyses of ancient drama that are not easy to find anywhere else.
Table of Contents
The Newly Added Titles from Macmillan Films Include:
- Lysistrata Staging: No Sex without Peace: This complete 2006 staging of Aristophanes’ shocking comic masterpiece features Iris McQuillan-Grace in the title role and a talented ensemble cast and shows why sexual politics are timelessly funny. Originally produced in 2006 and remastered in HD in 2016.
- Lysistrata: Female Power & Democracy: This PBS documentary about ancient archetypes reveals much about the forces that hold women back. Themed around Aristophanes’s timeless comic masterpiece about a sex strike and a power grab, the program reveals much about the ancient forces still impacting current political thought. Interviews include Jane Fonda, Katrina vanden Heuvel, Carol Jenkins, Senator Liz Krueger, Katha Pollitt, Norma Kamali, the Dean of Hofstra Drama James Kalb, Yale Greek drama scholar Victor Bers, Elizabeth Scharffenberger from Columbia, Mary English from Montclair State (on the role of women), and Jeffrey Hurwit.
- Wisdom for Life: A Guided Tour of Western Philosophy: This PBS documentary on Western philosophy was produced in response to the 9/11 terror attacks. It makes the case for the West and in particular the West’s pluralistic approach to reasoning and morality. Interviews with nine clear thinkers give an introduction to Western philosophy. It introduces the concepts of building up a moral system, the golden rule, the basics of logic (premise and inference), and pluralism. The program looks at the ideas of Plato, Aristotle, Otto Neurath, Kierkegaard, Wittgenstein, and John Rawls. Originally produced in 2005 and remastered in 2017.
- The Bacchae by Euripides: This beautifully staged production of Euripides’s 406 BC masterpiece is based on Peter Arnott’s audience-friendly translation. The story follows Dionysos (played by Mia Perovetz) visiting Thebes disguised as a charismatic young leader at the center of a horde of erotic female bacchae. The immortal play exposes the dangers of fanaticism and deals with the timeless human quest to balance order and spontaneity. Originally produced in 2017 and remastered in 2020.
- Lysistrata: A Feature Film of Aristophanes’ Masterpiece: This is the feature film of Lysistrata, Aristophanes’ shocking comic masterpiece, that won Remi Gold at the Houston International Film Festival. The production features Candace Janee as Lysistrata, Heather Gault as Stratyllis, Morgan Marcum as Myrine, and Tanya Rodina (Miss Ukraine) as the Goddess Peace. This production has the benefit of setting the comic scenes in the ancient Greek locations that are hinted at in the drama but which are hard for modern audiences to imagine, such as using the interior of the Parthenon for the scenes where Lysistrata outwits the Official.
- Sophocles’ Antigone: A Marionette Staging: This staging of Peter Arnott’s translation of Sophocles’ Antigone is done with marionettes. This staging features the remastered audio of Peter Arnott himself and the voice of Kelly Addyman as Antigone. Arnott’s translations benefited from years of live performances, which is why they are regarded so highly as the perfect blend of scholarship and fun.
- Euripides’ Cyclops: A Marionette Staging: This is a staging of the only complete Satyr play to survive antiquity. Translated by Peter D. Arnott into English from the original Greek, Euripides’ ludicrous comedy is brought to life with marionettes that preserve the effect of classical masks.
- The Oresteia Trilogy: Director James Thomas brings together a talented young cast and Peter Arnott’s faithful translation to unleash the gruesome raw power of Aeschylus’ work. This beautifully spoken original staging makes vivid the poetry and wisdom—and the themes of terror, revenge, and justice.
- Prometheus Bound by Aeschylus: A talented cast brings this Greek masterpiece to the stage with song, dance, and an innovative set that allows the immortal story about resisting tyranny to come alive. The staging features Peter Arnott’s audience-tested translation. The dance platform on the top of the skēnē building allows the chorus of Oceanids to first appear above Prometheus as in the original. The production features performances by Casey McIntyre, Christopher Thomas, Milila Shah, Alisha Desai, and James Thomas as Prometheus.
- Medea by Euripides: The “Olivia Sutherland Medea” is directed by James Thomas and brings to stage Peter Arnott’s line-by-line translation of Euripides’ masterpiece. The staging brings to life the rarely experienced complexity and poetic impact of the original text and includes the romantic scenes with Aegis, all the poetic choral odes, and the triumphant ending.
- Oedipus Rex by Sophocles: This program is a staging of Peter Arnott’s translation of Sophocles’ masterpiece Oedipus Rex—also known as Oedipus Tyrannus or simply Oedipus. Set in a time of plague, the hero who solved the riddle of the sphinx is now King of Thebes and is about to go on another riddle quest to uncover the source of his city’s pollution. Peter’s line-by-line translation complete with all the chorus odes gives the fullest exposure to this conundrum riddle of a play—a masterpiece which has inspired thinkers, writers, and psychotherapists since.
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