Behind the Scenes, Getty Villa, J. Paul Getty Museum

Video: “Elektra” Director and Cast on Working in the Villa’s Outdoor Theater

What is it like to perform Greek tragedy in an outdoor theater setting? The director, the composer and musical director, and cast members of the sold-out new production of Sophocles’ Elektra—which premieres tonight at the Getty Villa—gave us their take as they prepared to open the show. The production features a newly commissioned translation by Timberlake Wertenbaker of this epic tragedy of revenge and redemption, which is one of Sophocles’ most elegantly structured and emotionally wrenching works.

Update as of Thursday afternoon—a few tickets have just been released for this weekend’s performances.

Carey Perloff and Olympia Dukakis begin, followed by Manoel Felciano, who plays Orestes (at 1:16); composer and musical director Bonfire Madigan Shive (at 2:07); and Pamela Reed, who plays Clytemnestra (at 5:04).

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      Olympian Census #4: Aphrodite

      Get the stats on your favorite (and not-so-favorite) gods and goddesses on view at the Getty Center.

      Roman name: Venus

      Employment: Goddess of Love and Beauty

      Place of residence: Mount Olympus

      Parents: Born out of sea foam formed when Uranus’s castrated genitals were thrown into the ocean

      Marital status: Married to Hephaestus, the God of Blacksmiths, but had many lovers, both immortal and mortal

      Offspring: Aeneas, Cupid, Eros, Harmonia, Hermaphroditos, and more

      Symbol: Dove, swan, and roses

      Special talent: Being beautiful and sexy could never have been easier for this Greek goddess

      Highlights reel:

      • Zeus knew she was trouble when she walked in (Sorry, Taylor Swift) to Mount Olympus for the first time. So Zeus married Aphrodite to his son Hephaestus (Vulcan), forming the perfect “Beauty and the Beast” couple.
      • When Aphrodite and Persephone, the queen of the underworld, both fell in love with the beautiful mortal boy Adonis, Zeus gave Adonis the choice to live with one goddess for 1/3 of the year and the other for 2/3. Adonis chose to live with Aphrodite longer, only to die young.
      • Aphrodite offered Helen, the most beautiful mortal woman, to Paris, a Trojan prince, to win the Golden Apple from him over Hera and Athena. She just conveniently forgot the fact that Helen was already married. Oops. Hello, Trojan War!

      Olympian Census is a 12-part series profiling gods in art at the Getty Center.

      08/03/15

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