On Feb 22nd aod will be performing at the British Museum as part of Creative Responses to Troy at the British Museum. We will perform scenes from ancient Greek drama around the theme of Troy, with the acclaimed world music choir Vocal Explosion
Performances are free and take place in front of the Nereid monument are at 12pm, 1.25pm & 2.50pm
Please join us!
Thank you to everyone who joined us to celebrate our 25th birthday earlier in November!
In the fine spirit of Dionysus, wine and prosecco graced the evening as guests enjoyed a host of performances from some of our repertoire of works which included Lysistrata and Electra. A lovely collection of Sappho poetry, read by aod collaborators past and present, topped the evening off brilliantly.
Chair of our board, Robert Garbett, ran a fabulous auction and raffle, and we want to say a big thank you to our raffle and auction prize donors for their generosity, as well as to everyone who bought a raffle ticket and bid on a prize.
We extend a very big thanks to our many valued supporters, donors and friends who have supported us through to the ripe old age of 25, without whom we wouldn’t exist.
HERE’S TO THE NEXT 25 YEARS!
Under the blazing sun, Lysistrata and the women of Athens, Sparta, Thebes and other cities torturously managed to steer Greece to a path of Peace, with much humour and (phallic) intervention along the way! Tensions rose and and reached bursting point, but Peace won out in the end. If only it was that easy!
National and international touring theatre company Actors of Dionysus will be bringing Aristophanes’ Lysistrata to Spruce Wood in Kingston this Summer. This thrilling open-air production will take place in the beautiful outdoor theatre and in the grounds of this wonderfully landscaped garden.
We are very excited to bring a comedy to Spruce Wood this year! We toured with Lysistrata in 2010, 2011 and 2016, and it is a firm favourite of ours and with critics alike - “A slick, hilariously funny show, which rattles along at high speed on the strength of fine ensemble work from its cast of five...Timeless stuff.” The Stage
Praise for Actors of Dionysus at Spruce Wood:
10/10 - Top drawer. Clever, vibrant, original with nice touches of humour - gripping! (Antigone, 2017)
10/10 - Exquisite location. Perfect setting. Outstanding acting. (Bacchae, 2016)
Everything was perfect – even the weather!
Featuring a talented ensemble of Actors who will learn the show in a week, this performance promises to be a spectacular and hilarious event, bringing classical Greek drama alive for a modern audience.
This is, as always, an exclusive and truly magical evening. Guests arrive on the red carpet at 7pm and are greeted with a glass of bubbly and canapés and an opportunity to explore the beautiful cultivated gardens and view the many sculptures at Spruce Wood. The performance of Lysistrata begins at 8pm and is followed by a re-filling of glasses and a charity auction which is brimming with exciting items. There follows an exquisite buffet in the Tudor Sunken Garden. An opportunity to sample an array of even more delicious and highly exclusive wines by the glass will be offered.
This is a delightful, high end, one off event where the wine flows freely and the drama plays out in front of your eyes in a truly seductive setting. Don't miss it!
All proceeds from the event will go toward the education work and public engagement programme of the Charity Actors of Dionysus.
aod gave guests at Spruce Wood an 'incredible evening' of wine and 'wonderful performance' on Sat 16th July.
Other feedback includes:
'I found the performance both exciting and intellectually challenging...the athleticism made my jaw drop'.
'Fab performance last night of Bacchae at Spruce Wood'
Next stop Osterley Park
National touring theatre company, Actors of Dionysus, will be bringing Euripides’ Bacchae to Spruce Wood in Kingston this Summer. This thrilling open-air production will take place in the beautiful outdoor theatre and in the grounds of this wonderfully landscaped garden.
Euripides’ masterpiece of rejection and revenge pits the uptight King Pentheus against the powerful demi-God Dionysus on his return to his homeland Thebes. When the newly crowned Pentheus forbids any worship of this new God, Dionysus unleashes the savage anger of his women, the Bacchae, and the battle begins. This is a powerful exploration of the seductive nature of cult and the ability of power to corrupt. See who wins in this ultimate power struggle.
Featuring a talented ensemble, and elements of aerial and physical theatre, this performance promises to be a spectacular event bringing classical Greek drama alive for a modern audience.
Bacchae cast list:
Tamsin Shasha performs the part of Dionysus and co-directs with David Stuttard, using his original adaptation. This production follows on from aod’s recent success with their new play Helen (a contemporary piece based on the myth of Helen of Troy) at Brighton Fringe, which was described as “an inspired piece of theatre, meticulously presented” (Brighton Argus), and “astonishing and unforgettable” (Fringe Review).
This is an exclusive and magical evening. Guests arrive on the red carpet at 7pm and are greeted with a glass of bubbly and canapés and an opportunity to explore the beautiful cultivated gardens and view the many sculptures at Spruce Wood.
Our performance of The Bacchae begins at 8pm and is followed by a re-filling of glasses and a charity auction led by John "Fingers" Fingleton.
There follows an exquisite buffet in the Tudor Sunken Garden catered by Bobsiloula with wines provided by Nekter Wines. An opportunity to sample an array of even more delicious and highly exclusive wines by the glass will be offered.
This is a delightful high end, one off event where the wine flows freely and the drama plays out in front of your very eyes in a truly seductive and magical setting. Don't miss it!!
All proceeds go toward the education work and public engagement work of the charity Actors of Dionysus.
One of the most passionate and intriguing of all Greek tragedies, Bacchae is an exploration of the charisma and potential cruelty of power. When the people of Thebes refuse to worship Dionysus, the god wreaks a terrible revenge.
Tamsin Shasha stars (‘a captivating performance’ Glasgow Herald) in David Stuttard’s ‘lively and pulsating translation’ (Michael Scott, BBC’s The Greatest Story Ever Told).
Performed in front of the Temple of Pan in the beautiful gardens at Osterley House the production will bring Euripides' masterpiece of rejection and revenge vividly to life.
For more information and to book tickets please go click here
Following discussions with the National Trust we are delighted to announce that we shall be performing Euripides' masterpiece of rejection and revenge, The Bacchae at Osterley House (http://www.nationaltrust.org.uk/osterley-park-and-house) on 29th, 30th & 31st July 2016. Watch this space for further details and how to book.
Temple of Pan in the gardens at Osterley House - the setting for aod's production of The Bacchae.
aod performing Bacchae in the ancient theatre at Ephesus in Turkey in 2002
Image of King Pentheus suffering the wrath of Dionysus, fifth century BC
We return to Spruce Wood once again for another Dionysian summer evening. Wine will be flowing, spirits will be high, the food will be delicious and another magical night at the theatre awaits....and this time our patron saint Dionysus joins us!
This year we are delighted to present The Bacchae, Euripides' masterpiece of rejection and revenge.
All this on Saturday, July 16th
and in the beautiful private gardens of Spruce Wood.
Please save the date in your diaries and tell let any family and friends know too.
Tickets will be on sale shortly.
It would be a sacrilege to miss it!
aod offer exclusive, high quality bespoke events for every occasion including parties, weddings, birthday's anniversaries and more sombre occasions. These can be one off performances, poetry readings or recitals depending on individual requirements.
Previous venues have included the wonderful outdoor theatre at Spruce Wood, London's City Hall, the House of St Barnabas in Soho, Allington Castle in Kent, Europe House (the home of the European Commission) and the Reform Club on Pall Mall.
This year sees us return to Spruce Wood on July 16th for a rousing performance of Euripides' s masterpiece, The Bacchae.
On the 4th July was a night to remember with a reception, canapés, fireworks and live music; we performed Paris-Alexandros – the newly reconstructed masterpiece that hasn’t been staged in 2400 years – in a beautiful outdoor theatre.
Dinner was catered by award winning restaurant The Life Goddess and we arranged for fabulous gifts in our auction that was conducted by the much-loved John ‘Fingers’ Fingleton.
The funds that we raised from this event will benefit our existing education strand (schools workshops and study aids), as well as our new Public Engagement and Outreach programme.
A large number of supporters shared their love of Classics with Boris Johnson, Bettany Hughes and aod, in support of the charity Classics for All, in a spectacular venue with panoramic views of London.
The evening began with a speech by Boris Johnson, Patron of Classics for All, followed by a talk from Burntwood School pupil Yasmin Solomin and Greig City Academy Assistant Vice Principal Deborah Hughes. They were followed by a special performance by aod performers and directed by David Stuttard, which we created for this event, featuring readings of excerpts from well-loved Greek literature and drama by actors including Fenella Fielding.
For more information on the charity Classics for All click here.
Here are some photos from the event :
On Sat 12th July aod held a small launch of their new Sappho CD The Sweetness of Honey at a private house in London. The evening was a great success and there was much enjoyment to be had.
Poems of Sappho (based on translations by David Stuttard and Josephine Balmer) are read by Fenella Fielding and Tamsin Shasha, and set to music by Emma Hetherington, who performs them with Rebecca Vučetić.
‘The readings are fluent and expressive, bringing the texts to life and conveying the emotion without ever becoming histrionic. the music suits the verse well and the performance by the two sister is delightful, their voices blending most attractively.”
JACT review (Joint Assoc of Classical Teachers)
Photographs of the event below
Produced by Euripides in 415 BC in the run-up to war, Trojan Women is a powerful and moving ancient Greek dramas – a profoundly contemporary story of love, loss and loyalty.
In this special production, staged in the magical setting of Spruce Wood’s outdoor theatre, David Stuttard directed his own exhilarating adaptation. Guests arrived at 7.30pm – Drinks and Canapés: Reception and Garden Walk 8.00pm – Performance of Trojan Women 9.30pm – Buffet Garden Supper in the Tudor Sunken Walled Garden 11.30pm – Carriages This was a fundraising event. Tickets were (£150.00) , with the money raised going towards the registered charity aod, which carries out important outreach programmes, including schools workshops and study aids.
Let nothing stop you from seeing them! (The Times)
A once-in-a-lifetime outdoor performance of Medea was at a secret London location on Saturday 31st August 2013.
First produced by Euripides in 431 BC at the height of Athens’ empire, Medea is one of the most powerful of all ancient Greek dramas – the story of a woman scorned and the terrifying consequences of her fury. For this special event, held in a private outdoor theatre, David Stuttard directed his own exhilarating adaptation to create a tense psychological drama of sexual jealousy and revenge.
This was a fundraising event, prior to a full-scale production at The Rose Theatre, Kingston. The money raised went towards the registered charity Actors of Dionysus (aod), which carries out important outreach programmes, including schools workshops and study aids.
Palamedes by Euripides, reconstructed by David Stuttard, will take place on 28th May 2013 at Europe House 32 Smith Square, London SW1P 3EU (doors open 6.30 pm, performance begins 7.00 pm)
The sequel to ‘Paris Alexandros’ originally the second play in a ‘Trojan Trilogy’ (which contained the celebrated ‘Trojan Women’), ‘Palamedes’ tells the story of a hero falsely accused of treason.
Unperformed for almost two and a half thousand years, ‘Palamedes’ has been reconstructed from fragments by David Stuttard.
Of our last event, historian Bettany Hughes wrote:
Savage Beauty last night pulled together sensuous, hilarious and genuinely moving work from Ancient Greek poems, plays and inscriptions. A✭! Kudos.
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