The students at Park Manor school tackled a very ambitious production of The Burial at Thebes – Sophocles Antigone for the school’s most recent play, performed Wednesday and Thursday. Ted Frey, the school’s drama teacher, said he always wanted to do something with chorus and prefers to have his students act in different genres from year to year.
This is the first time the school will perform a Greek tragedy.“Of all the Greek tragedies this is the one we could actually do in a school,” laughs Frey.
The students have dealt with the mature material very well, said Frey, who has spoken to them very honestly and openly about the issues in the play.
“This play has quite an appeal. It is a moral play. It is not about sex or profanity, it is about doing the right thing,” said Frey. “There are some very deep moral questions in this play and we have discussed this with the students and bring these ideas into the present.”
The performance has been updated as students wear clothes from today instead of robes and the speech of the play reflects today’s language.
“It has just beautiful modern language and when I first read this version through it was perfect. It has common language and clichés that we might say, but they are strung together in the most beautiful poetry,” said Frey.
Frey said he has a good group of Grade 7 and 8 students who have worked very hard on their performances and have been dedicated to rehearsals that began halfway through March.
As curtain time approached for the opening performance Wednesday, a last-minute run-through got the kids ready for their well-received debut.