Not seven, just one. It turns out that one powerful woman can bring a tyrant to his knees, as we are seeing nightly before our eyes, but Sophocles’ mighty play about ANTIGONE (reconstructed by Jean Anouilh and adapted by Lewis Galantiere) was written 3000 years ago. Flat Earth Theatre, always surprising us with savvy, potent productions, is presenting a singular, resonant ANTIGONE (through this weekend only) with one of the most gripping performances of the “daughter of kings” I’ve seen in ages. Regine Vital gives a tour de force as the woman who defies the law and reigns destruction down on Thebes.
Director Lindsay Eagle’s vision for this production features yet another commanding performance. Just as it did in Sophocles’ day, the Greek Chorus takes center stage at Flat Earth to proclaim the awful truth: Tragedy will consume every living being (and the dead as well). The remarkable Elbert Joseph leads a dynamic signing chorus to warn us about the consequences of complacency and the grave cost of heroics.
When Joseph’s sinewy arms rise over his head in righteous anger, we tremble imagining the horror to come. His whole body speaks, not just his eloquent hands… and the roar is deafening. Kudos to Flat Earth for entrusting Joseph to elevate the profound weight of the story with his soaring hands. Without him and the other ASL interpreters, this would be just another ordinary retelling of the Greek classic. Instead it’s an extraordinary coup.