A new production of Euripides’ Greek tragedy, "The Trojan Women" is coming to the HSA Theatre in Harlem at Harlem School fo The Arts. Directed by Alfred Preisser, who has directed and produced over fifty professional shows in New York, regionally and in Europe.
Originally set after the fall of the ancient city of Troy, this modern version occurs in the here and now - in the aftermath of a battle in a city much like New York. The Trojan Women, the sole survivors of a ruined community, the spoils of an endless war that has resulted in the extermination of their men, await their fate at the hands of their conquerors. The looming question becomes - which conquering hero will claim them for inevitable enslavement?
According to the producers, the play has especially deep meaning in the current global landscape, in which civil wars and bitter religious strife continually threaten the liberty and safety of women. “The most important aspect of what we’re doing with this production is engaging teen actors alongside professional actors, and exploring global women’s rights issues through the lens of Greek tragedy,” said director Alfred Presser. “It’s extremely visceral material. I’ve been consistently amazed, and deeply moved, by how far and how true the emotional connections are drawn by these young performers in this version of Trojan Women,” he added.
Bringing together a technically skilled cast of students and working actors has resulted in some unintended but welcomed surprises that heightens the natural tension expressed in this timeless tragedy.
Preisser's work has been recognized with The American Theatre Wing Award, Drama Desk Award, Edwin Booth Award, Lucille Lortel Award and numerous Audelco Awards. His productions of Aint Supposed to Die a Natural Death and Caligula are archived at Lincoln Center for the Performing Arts, and his production of King Lear featuring Andre’ De Shields’ opened the 75th Anniversary Season of The Folger Shakespeare Theatre in Washington, D.C. As an educator he has taught and guest directed at CCNY in Harlem, The Frederick Douglass Creative Arts Center, and Stella Adler NYU.
The production opens this Friday and tickets for The Trojan Women are currently available online: http://www.brownpapertickets.com/event/2831115