Drama. Freely adapted by Emily Mann from the play by Sophocles.
Cast: 3m., 3w. (2 either gender, plus chorus.) Thebes' civil war has ended. Creon, the ascending king, proclaims, "Regarding the bodies of the sons of Oedipus: Eteocles, a hero who fought for Thebes…will be given a hero's burial…But for Polyneices who recruited foreign troops to attack our home—let his corpse rot under the sweltering sun, food for the birds and the dogs…Anyone who dares to bury the enemy will be publicly executed." So begins this adaptation of Antigone, who battles Creon, her uncle, for the right in God's name to bury her dead brother, Polyneices, but loses that fight in a horrifying conclusion to this story. Antigone is usually seen as the righteous heroine while Creon is the hated villain. However, in this version, we take a fresh look at Antigone's own rigidity as an equal contributor to this story's devastating ending. Viewed as a contest between equally determined and fierce competitors, both right and both wrong, the play is an intense examination of the questions: "How can one penetrate the absolute certainty and righteousness of political or religious leaders who refuse to listen?" "What happens when neither side in a conflict agrees to yield?" "What happens when one sees the catastrophic consequences of one's actions too late?" The path taken here—vengeance will breed vengeance—is a shattering lesson for our times. Bare stage. Approximate running time: 70 minutes.