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Oedipus Rex 2020




Following the success of the 2018 and 2019 Ancient drama festivals, this January the Warwick Classics Department and Classics Society present Sophocles’ Oedipus Rex.

Set in 1928, this musical production gives the famous play a city-noir twist. The arrogant West, fuelled by its industry, courses towards the Great Depression, themes reflected in Oedipus’ relationship with his own fate. Oedipus, King of Thebes, searches for the murderer of his predecessor, Laius. His city has become diseased and impoverished, destined to remain as such until the killer is revealed. The investigation draws Oedipus towards a prophecy he has always dreaded. As the day darkens, fate begins to spiral out of his control.

Supporting the performance, the Department is offering a series of lectures, discussions and seminars for school students and general audiences. These include:

- Professor Eric Csapo (British Academy Global Professor of Classics at Warwick) ‘The myth of Oedipus: textual, visual and material representations’

- Professor Oliver Taplin (Emeritus Professor of Classics, Oxford) in discussion with Dr Emmanuela Bakola on ‘Themes in Sophocles’ Oedipus: Translation and performance’

- Professor Michael Scott (Professor of Classics at Warwick) on ‘The historical context of Oedipus King

- Dr Emmanuela Bakola (Associate Professor of Ancient Greek Language and Literature, Warwick), on ‘The house, the mountain, the hero, fate and responsibility: a performance analysis of Sophocles’ Oedipus King’

- Dr David Fearn (Reader in Greek Language and Literature, Warwick) on ‘The Sophoclean hero and the chorus’ (seminar)

- Mr Kirk Hastings (Music composer and Choir leader), Participatory workshop based on the choral songs & music composition of Oedipus King.

More specifically:

  • The performance of the 30th of January (7.30 pm) will be preceded by a talk and discussion on Oedipus by Professor Emeritus Oliver Taplin and Dr Emmanuela Bakola (at 6.30pm), with Q & A. Tickets for the Thursday performance and talk are £6 for individuals and groups that are not schools and can be booked on the Warwick Arts Centre website. (This day has now been extended with extra talks for schools - please see below)
  • The 31st of January event (the ‘Schools day’) is FREE for teachers and pupils, but schools are asked to organise their own transportation and lunch. The (provisional) programme can be downloaded here. If you wish to book your pupils for this day, please email our Research and Outreach Assistant, Ms Emmy Stavropoulou ( stating the (approximate) number of participants and the talk/workshop options you wish to attend by 8 January 2020. For access & parking information and other enquiries please also email Ms Stavropoulou . (This day is now fully booked)
Due to unprecedented demand for the schools day (performance and talks) on the 31st of January 2020, the department of Classics and Ancient History at Warwick have decided to add an extra day of talks, seminars and discussions to the programme.
In addition to the talks and performance on the 31st (there are only 35 seats left, first come first served - please see above for the programme), we are offering the following on the 30th of January 2020:
3-4 pm AND 4-5pm: ‘The Sophoclean hero and the chorus’ (seminar) by Dr David Fearn (Reader in Greek Language and Literature) (capacity: 60 people at each seminar)
3-4 AND 5-6 pm: ‘The house, the mountain, the hero, fate and responsibility: a performance analysis of Sophocles’ Oedipus King’ by Dr Emmanuela Bakola (Associate Professor in Ancient Greek Language and Literature) (capacity: 150 people at each lecture)
2-3 AND 4-5 pm: ‘The myth of Oedipus: textual, visual and material representations’ by Professsor Eric Csapo (British Academy Global Professor) (capacity: 150 people at each lecture)
6.30-7.00pm: Pre-performance platform discussion on 'Oedipus King' with Professor Oliver Taplin and Dr Emmanuela Bakola (Main theatre, Warwick Arts Centre)
7.30-9pm: Performance of 'Oedipus King' at Warwick Arts Centre Main Theatre
- To book your school for the performance of Oedipus Rex (7.30-9pm), please email, with number of seats required. There is a small fee involved (£3 per person), 50% discount from the normal price of £6. The ticket includes the pre-performance platform discussion with Professor O.Taplin)
- To book your school for the lectures provided by the Warwick academics (first come first served, see capacities above), please email, with lecture preferences, schools names and numbers of attendees. These are free.
We look forward to seeing you as many of you as possible there!


The Trailer