By Kate Williams '16
One of the most powerful and enduring of Greek tragedies, Medea, opens the last week of October on the PLU Eastvold stage.
In this famous tragedy, Medea centers on the myth of Jason, leader of the Argonauts, who has won the dragon-guarded treasure of the Golden Fleece with the help of the sorceress Medea. Having married Medea and fathered her two children, Jason abandons her for a more favorable match, never suspecting the terrible revenge she will take.
This particular story was originally written by Euripides. In Euripides’ rendition, Medea was ahead of its time when first produced in 431 BCE. While it wasn’t well received at the time, (after all, a woman does carry out a most awful murder and is then saved by the Gods), it has become one of the most popular Greek plays ever produced. It experienced greater interest of the late 20th century, being interpreted as a nuanced and sympathetic portrayal of Medea’s struggle to take charge of her own life in a male-dominated world. Not only is Media a women, but also a foreigner. Deep questions regarding what property is, a women’s place in society, infidelity and the rights of children abound. On the surface, one could argue that it is a play about divorce, but in reality, it is dealing with power. Who has it, how is it wielded and what are the consequences.
Jeff Clapp, Associate Professor of Theatre & Dance and director of the production worked with PLU students and members of the community to cast the show.
“We have been fortunate to add two community members to our cast. We generally only cast PLU students for our productions. Medea is unique in that it requires two children to play the sons of Medea and Jason. So, we are happy to introduce to the PLU community Kaden Stanford, and Marcello Aycock playing the roles of the doomed children.”
Medea runs October 25th (student discount performance), 26th and 27th at 7:30 p.m. and October 28th at 2 p.m. in Eastvold Auditorium of the Karen Hille Phillips Center for the Performing Arts. Tickets are available online at Eventbrite. $10 – General admission; $5 – 60+, military, alumni and students; free – 18 and younger.