The ILIAD: Book One Comes To Aquila Theater 3/31-4/25
AQUILA THEATRE (Peter Meineck, Artistic Director) is proud to announce that they will continue their season with Homer's Iliad: Book One, beginning March 31st, and continuing through April 25th. Opening Night is set for April 16th. Directed by Peter Meineck, Iliad: Book One will have original music by Anthony Cochrane and movement by Desiree Sanchez. Iliad: Book One will feature John Buxton, Nathan Flower, Jeffrey Golde, Jay Painter, Natasha Piletich, and Vaishnavi Sharma.
Prior to this season, which began with their acclaimed premiere of Catch 22, Aquila was last seen in New York in 2007 when they presented Prometheus Bound. Since then the company has been touring internationally, performing in festivals throughout Europe, in Greece, Poland, Hungary, Germany and the United Kingdom. Now Aquila is back in New York and will present regular seasons of 2 to 3 plays a year. Iliad: Book One is one of Aquila's signature productions and the company has been exploring the text since it's first groundbreaking experimental production at Lincoln Center in 1999. The company has returned to the project several times over the past nine years with performances at Classic Stage Company, NYU, Columbia University, and in Syros, Greece. The New York Times called it "a performance of staggering power ... stunning, stirring, and memorable theatrical experience."
Homer's Iliad is a 2700-year-old text originally created for performance that tells the story of the rage of Achilles, the cost of war, and his personal search for honor and meaning. Aquila Theatre brings this seminal work to vivid life in a production that seeks to restore the Iliad to its original home - the realm of the performer. Stanley Lombardo's striking American translation conveys the muscularity and sheer force of the ancient Greek while Anthony Cochrane's original score and Peter Meineck's direction pull the audience deep into this great epic work. Set in WWII, Aquila's production is inspired by the cover of Stanley Lombardo's translation, which is a photograph of the D-day landings, entitled, Into the Jaws of Death.
The Iliad: Book One has been a ten year labor of love for Aquila This new production harnesses Aquila's expert acting ensemble in a fiercely committed, bold and truly original theatrical experience. This production is part of the National Endowment of the Humanities sponsored Page and Stage program and partners Aquila at the Lucille Lortel Theatre with The Brooklyn Public Library, The Queens Public Library, The Newark Public Library, The White Plains Public Library and New York University's Center for Ancient Studies. Page and Stage is an in-depth partnership between the library and the theater based around Homer's Iliad that links public libraries and performing arts centers across America. The program's aim is to create innovative ways for theatre to reach new audiences.
Peter Meineck has directed and/or produced over 40 productions in NY, London, Holland, Germany, Greece, Scotland, Canada, Bermuda, and the US in venues as diverse as Carnegie Hall, the ancient Stadium at Delphi, Lincoln Center, and the White House. Peter has published several volumes of translations of Greek plays including Aeschylus' Oresteia, which won the Lewis Galantiere Award for Literary Translation from the American Translators Association, Sophocles' Theban Plays (with Paul Woodruff) and Philoctetes and Ajax and Aristophanes' Clouds, Wasps & Birds. He has also written several literary adaptations for the stage including The Man Who Would Be King, Canterbury Tales, The Invisible Man, in addition to Catch-22. He also acts as a mythological advisor, most recently to Will Smith on I Am Legend.
The Aquila Theatre Company was founded in London in 1991 by Peter Meineck and has been based in New York City since 1999. Aquila's mission is to bring the greatest theatrical works to the greatest number. Aquila presents a regular season of plays in New York, at international festivals, and tours to approximately seventy American towns and cities a year. Aquila also provides access to excellent theatre for people in under-served rural and inner city communities. The Aquila performance approach is a technique developed by Peter Meineck that combines text and physical action based in a theory of theatrical unity. The technique is aimed to create an aesthetic environment where the performer can create and recreate a role in a consistently changing theatrical atmosphere. Aquila Theatre broadens the classical cannon, collaborates across the performing arts, deepens a commitment to artistic excellence, teaches and exchanges idea and embraces new technology.
Performances, which begin March 31st, and continue through April 25th, will be Wednesday through Saturday evenings at 8 pm, with matinees Wednesdays at 2 PM (April 8th, 15th & 22nd only), with special performances Tuesday March 31st at 8PM, Thursday April 2nd at 2 PM, and Sunday April 19th at 1 PM. Running time will be 75 minutes with no intermission.
The Lucille Lortel Theater is located at 121 Christopher Street, between Bleecker and Hudson Streets. Tickets may be purchased at TicketCentral.com or by phone at 212/279-4200.