Name of the Professor/Tutor
Directing the Modernised Version of Sophocles’ Oedipus Rex
Hundreds of centuries its first stage performance, Sophocles’ Oedipus Rex remains relevant to the modern society, and can aptly befit today’s audience. It is also shrouded with lots of Athenian traditions and practices which might have lost significance today. Though I would opt to direct a modernised version of this dramatic masterpiece, it would prove challenging if the uniqueness and the tragedy in the original play are to be maintained.
In directing the play, the central theme would be free will, fate and tragic flaw. The plot in the original version of Oedipus Rex is essentially driven by characters who strive to make well-calculated decisions (free will), only to end up with unpremeditated outcomes (fate). The gist of the play’s plot consists of Oedipus’s inadvertent killing of his father in the course of asserting his (Oedipus power), and subsequent marriage to his mother (as part of observance of traditions). Both actions, despite being done in good faith, lead to his tragic downfall, and e audience can only blame the tragic flow on fate. Without an emphasis of these themes, the tragedy depicted in the original text will be lost.
As for the setting, I would conduct the play in rural monuments of Athens, which have preserved the ancient structures that existed around the time when the pay was first produced, to maintain the classical setting of the play. I would not want to modernize the play, and retain my setting to be in the classical antiquity period, by the help of Green monuments. The relations, viewpoints, decisions, motives, ideations and decisions of characters in this play are strongly premised on Athenian traditional practices such that modernizing the play would lead to loss of authenticity. For instance, one has to appreciate the role of Oracles and the Greek gods, to appreciate why they matter so much in shaping decisions of main characters in the play. In the modern world, however, the same forces appear to be of limited influence to personal and political decision making, and such may be irrelevant despite being central to the play. I would let Robert De Niro act the role of Creon, owing to his decisive nature and serious appearance on stage. Will Smith would act the role of Oedipus, given his youthfulness and pride in stage, similar to that of Oedipus while Shantel VanSanten would play the role of Jocasta.
Sophocles. Oedipus the King. Accessed <www.archive.org/…/oedipuskingofthe015093mbp/
oedipuskingofthe015093mbp_djvu.txt> October 11, 2014