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Bloodline Transports Hangar to the Dawn of Civilization

June 29, 2006 (ITHACA, NY) - Following on its success with last summer’s production of As You Like It, the Hangar Theatre will once again breathe new life into a classic play this summer as its 2006 season continues with Bloodline: The Children of Argos. From July 5th through the 22nd, the Hangar presents a theatrical experience unlike any other in its 32 year history. “In telling an epic story so vast and expansive, this production will be spread out over two parts – like a television mini-series,” explains the Hangar’s artistic director Kevin Moriarty. “In fact, this play is actually comprised of five classic Greek plays by the three great fathers of modern drama: Aeschylus, Euripides, and Sophocles.”


The plot of Bloodline tells the story of a legendary royal family of heroes, warriors, kings and queens whose lives are forever changed by the events leading up to and following the famed Trojan War. “Put together, these ancient Greek plays comprise an epic story of betrayal, murder, treachery, revenge, banishment, and—ultimately—a beautiful sense of hope and redemption, as retribution yields to justice,” according to Moriarty.
Part One: Sacrifice includes the plays Iphigenia in Aulis by Euripides and Agamemnon by Aeschylus. Part Two: Absolution includes Electra by Sophocles and Orestes and Iphigenia in Tauris by Euripides. These two parts will be performed in repertory through the three week run, allowing audience members to see the two parts at one week intervals, on back to back evenings, or in a full-day marathon, when the two parts will be performed in order, with a matinee of Part One followed by an evening performance of Part Two. “The two marathon days, when the audience can experience the full sweep and grandeur of the stories in one day, promise to be the most intense, fun, and moving experience of the summer for our audience members in search of a once-in-a-lifetime theatrical experience,” says Moriarty.

In addition to directing both parts of Bloodline, Moriarty also adapted the scripts from multiple English language translations into one, unified drama. “With this version, we’ve attempted to preserve as much of the uniqueness of each of the three playwrights’ voices as possible, while editing the stories to be streamlined for clarity of plot and intensity of dramatic action,” he explains. Moriarty hopes that the Hangar audiences will respond to the plays as directly and emotionally as he has in the past year of working on them.

“Though written 2,500 years ago, these classic Greek plays still penetrate to the core of our own human experience today,” he says. “While telling bold, dynamic, entertaining stories of legendary characters, they also address the complete experience of what it is to be human, to ask questions of ourselves and each other about our relationships to our family and our faith, and to confront the need for all of us to be vigilant in our lives, as individuals and as citizens of a great democracy.”

The cast of Bloodline will take on multiple roles in the sweeping saga. Patrick Rameau joins the cast as King Agamemnon and King Thoas. Rameau is an international actor with experience throughout Europe and North America. His most recent work includes two seasons as resident professional teaching associate (RPTA) at Cornell University, where he appeared in Othello, A Raisin in the Sun, The Merchant of Venice, and The Cradle Will Rock. Another former Cornell RPTA, Laurence Drozd, will be featured in the cast, playing Aegisthus, Tyndareus, and others. Drozd is also a teaching artist for the Hangar Theatre and spearheaded this year’s Project 7 program. He appeared as Oliver in last summer’s Hangar production of As You Like It, and is a founding member of Storm Theatre in New York City. Jennifer Thompson, an alumna of the Hangar’s Lab Company, appears as Iphigenia, the daughter of Agamemnon, a pivotal role in the family drama that arcs across all four plays. Other cast members include Ruby Max Fury as Paedagogus, Marjorie Johnson as Clytemnestra, Eric Murdoch as Orestes, John Pasha as Menelaus, and Amy Kim Waschke as Electra.

To recreate the Trojan War era on stage, the Hangar has assembled a design team from across the country. Scenic Designer Jo Winiarski has incorporated elements of Robert Rauschenberg’s “combines” into the Bloodline set. Winiarski’s recent design credits include One Way Ticket to Hell at the Marilyn Monroe Theatre in Los Angeles and What Then at The Ohio Theatre in New York. Jen Caprio, a graduate of Ithaca College, returns to the Hangar for her 6th season as costume designer. In addition to work on Broadway in The 25th Annual Putnam County Spelling Bee, Caprio’s regional work includes The Cleveland Playhouse, Helen Hayes Performing Arts Center, and Hudson Stage. Tyler Micoleau, lighting designer of last summer’s Hangar productions of As You Like It and The Wiz, returns for Bloodline, after a busy year of designing productions at regional theaters and off-Broadway, including Moriarty’s New York production of The God Committee. Thom Jones also returns to the Hangar as the voice and speech coach for the production. Jones’ previous Hangar work includes As You Like It and The Blue Room. Two Ithaca College professors will be joining the production as well: Don Tindall as sound designer and Norm Johnson as fight director.

Bloodline: The Children of Argos will appear at the Hangar Theatre in Cass Park from July 5th through July 22nd thanks to the support of corporate sponsors Johanna Gettinger, Peggy Haine, Allan Warshawsky, and Cathy Webb of Audrey Edelman and Associates/RealtyUSA (Part One) and Foster Custom Kitchens (Part Two).

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