When Euripides wrote Orestes back in (circa) 408 BC, it's unlikely he included references to William Burroughs, John Wayne Gacy or Bret Easton Ellis, nor was there punk, ska or new wave music. There are, however, in the ellen beckerman and company [sic] production of Charles L. Mee, Jr.'s adaptation playing Off-Broadway at the HERE Arts Center May 27-June 17. Performances began May 24.
In the classic Greek story, Orestes kills his mother Clytemnestra and her new lover, at the urging of his sister Electra, to avenge the murder of their father Agamemnon. In the adaptation, Mee interpolates modern murder allusions into the aftermath of the murder and ventures into the psychological reasoning for the siblings' actions.
The cast of Orestes includes James Saidy, Margot Ebling and Josh Conklin as well as the voices of C. Andrew Bauer, Shawn Fagan, Elliott Kennerson, Colleen Madden, Bray Poor and Sara Sommervold. Ellen Beckerman, artistic director and founder of eb&c, will direct.
The creative team includes Michael O'Connor on lighting design, Tina Bishko on production design and Joel Yapsing with clothing design.
For tickets to Orestes at HERE, 145 Sixth Ave (between Spring and Dominick St.), call (212) 647-0202 or visit www.here.org. For more information on eb&c, visit their URL at www.eb c.org. — by Ernio Hernandez