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THE BRIDGES PROGRAM, A COLLABORATIVE EFFORT BY BARD COLLEGE AND THE RED HOOK SCHOOLS, PRESENTS TWO PERFORMANCES OF ANTIGONE IN NOVEMBER November 15 performance features members of the Epic Theatre Center; November 30 performance also features Red Hook
ANNANDALE-ON-HUDSON, N.Y.-The Red Hook/Bard College BRIDGES program-designed to promote high student achievement in and through the arts-will present two performances of Sophocles's play Antigone in November. The first performance, on Thursday, November 15, at 11:45 a.m. in Olin Hall on the Bard campus, will be given by the Epic Theatre Center. Following the company's two-week residence at the Red Hook High School, the Epic Theatre Center and 10th-grade students from the high school will present a second performance on Friday, November 30, at 7:00 p.m. Both these performances are free and open to the public.
The Epic Theater Center's Antigone Project aims to build a bridge between the form and civic purpose of a classical Greek play and community concerns of immediate contemporary relevance. The central conflict of Antigone lies between a personal morality and civic order-an ideal touchstone for exploring the complex relationship between individuals and society. The chief aim of the production is to help the community embrace the theatrical form as a mechanism to examine issues of local consequence, and to heighten student's political and social awareness.
During the initial performance on Thursday, November 15, the Chorus is removed from the plot movement of the play, while at each choral juncture the need for the play's action to be publicly considered is pointed out. Questions posed to the students might be, "What would the role of the public be if this issue came up in your community?" and "What is the Chorus in your world?" During the companies' residency at the school a Chorus of students becomes integrated within the professional production. Overseen and directed by Craig Rovere, the final performance on Friday, November 30, incorporates the students' responses to the questions posed by Antigone. Bard College students will serve as teaching assistants throughout the project.
The Epic Theatre Center is an exciting new company that champions the belief that theater is essential to a healthy democracy. The center is committed to promoting the value of the arts and artists in our society through the production of provocative interpretations of modern classics, new plays, workshops, and residencies that bridge education, empowerment, and performance.
Each year since 1997 the Red Hook Central School District and Bard College have received a prestigious Empire State Partnership Grant from the New York State Council on the Arts and the New York State Education Department to develop the BRIDGES program. These grants, which are highly competitive, are given to public schools working in partnership with cultural institutions. The Red Hook/Bard College partnership through the BRIDGES program "is a model program for New York State," according to Ann Gourlay Gabler, coordinator of the BRIDGES program, "the only one which is held in conjunction with a college."
This program is made possible in part through funding from the New York State Council on the Arts. For further information about the BRIDGES program or the performances of Antigone, call Ann Gourlay Gabler at 845-758-7434 or e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org.
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