Immerse Yourself in a World of Gods, Warriors, and their Choices. iDiOM THEATER in Bellingham proudly presents Sophocles’ AJAX, as part of Sylvia Center’s 2019 Summer Rep. Shows are at 7:30 p.m. on June 27, 28, 29, and July 5, 6, 11, 12, and 13 in the Lucas Hicks Theater at Sylvia Center for the Arts. Translation by Bryan Doerries, directed by Shu-Ling Hergenhahn-Zhao.
The show is one of two iDiOM Main Stage Productions in the Summer Rep with $20 tickets making possible three free shows outdoors in Maritime Heritage Park in Bellingham, WA.
AJAX, written by the Ancient Greek playwright Sophocles, has been performed for centuries, each iteration of the play a reflection of the times in which it runs. Theatre of War’s Bryan Doerries wrote his translation in 2015 as a contemporary take on war and the consequences of the choices we make. This iDiOM production will be the first of two indoor shows running this summer at Sylvia Center for the Arts.
At the end of the Trojan War, the great warrior Ajax has been driven wild at the hands of his enemies, and as a result, begins to self-destruct. The more seasoned warrior Odysseus is awarded a prize Ajax feels is his own by right, and in a haze of jealousy and rage (and a little goddess-induced delusion), Ajax commits a desperate and terrible act of vengeance.
AJAX tells the story of a man who makes a dangerous choice, and then asks us whether the honor we give to the dead is blind. This play has us process the consequences of war in a very real way, a way that makes us forget that the original script was written in 2,500 years ago. Translator Doerries set out to show the “unvarnished truth” about which Sophocles wrote, depicting the devastating impact of Ajax’s actions upon his wife, son, brother, troops, and chain of command, and implicitly asking the question “how do we reintegrate our soldiers—and ourselves—into a healthier society?”
iDiOM’s production of AJAX includes a male chorus and live musical accompaniment by Bill Anker, Bellingham drummer extraordinaire (known for his time in local bands including Black Beast Revival and The Whiskey Wailers).
This production is supported in part by an opening reception for the entire Summer Rep held on Thursday, June 27, featuring music and pre-show cocktails before the opening of AJAX in celebration of all five shows in the Summer Rep and the 50-plus actors and creative staff bringing them to life.
Running time: 80 minutes
Bellingham’s SYLVIA CENTER FOR THE ARTS creates and supports locally made performing arts and provides affordable arts education in theater, dance, and music.
iDiOM Theater, “the hardest-working theater in the known world,” has been one of the most prolific producers of new theatrical work in the nation since 2002, and became the in-house production company at Sylvia Center in 2016.