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Aeschylus' 'The Suppliants’  on stage in Cologne
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Aeschylus’ ‘The Suppliants’ on stage in Cologne

Categories: Culture and creativity -Music and Performing Arts
The ancient Greek tragedy puts a spotlight on the theme of female emancipation.
Le supplici - particolare di locandina
Le supplici – particolare di locandina

On 26 April the Italian Cultural Institute of Cologne, in collaboration with the Centro Interculturale Offene Welt-Mondoaperto, will be staging the performance ‘Le Supplici. Lettura teatrale con accompagnamento musicale’ (The Suppliants: A Theatrical Reading with a Musical Accompaniment), by Compagnia Itakatheater.

The Suppliants are fifty sisters who, forced into marrying violent cousins, decide to flee Egypt and seek protection from the king of Argos. For the Greeks, hospitality is sacred, but welcoming foreign women also means certain war with Egypt. King Pelasgo is hesitant, torn between respecting the laws of the gods and not wanting to endanger the safety of his people.

The Suppliants is one of the oldest Greek tragedies, written by Aeschylus in the 5th century BC, but it speaks the language of our times. Its archaic structure is expressed through the voice of the community, the women’s chorus, who are the real protagonists of the story. The maidens are indeed supplicants and in a weakened condition, but they do not yield to the fate imposed on them by men: they rebel to become masters of their own lives. Behind the archaic words of the chorus lies a demand that is more relevant than ever, that of the emancipation of women.

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