Things to do with a Classics degree: No. 3579

I’ve just got back from Bristol where my friend and I attended a fine performance of La Boheme at The Hippodrome. (Excuse me a moment while I wring out my handkerchief which got soaked during the last act deathbed drama.)

It was by the Chisinau National Opera, and the production was directed by Ellen Kent, who has been bringing international operatic companies to Great Britain for the past 10 years or so.

The set, which is apparently the same for all the operas in their repertoire this season, is a kind of section of a Roman amphitheatre, surmounted by excellent classical statues.

The programme tells us that Ellen Kent went for the Roman setting because she is a Classics graduate of Durham University.

So when parents ask at parents’ evenings ‘What can my daughter do with her Classics?’ you have yet another answer. Be a highly successful operatic director.

By the way, the juxtaposition of ‘Kent’ and ‘Opera’ brings back to mind the late lamented and excellent Kent Opera, murdered by the Arts Council (if I remember right). I vividly remember a performance of Monteverdi’s Orfeo in the Bath Theatre Royal, oh, 30 or more years ago, stunning in its scenery, its acting (which took a lot from Noh drama), the orchestration and the singing.

(What has this got to do with Classics? do I hear you cry? Well, who can be more classical that Orpheus?)

Le Gendre adapting Heaney adapting Sophocles at The Globe

The Telegraph arts bulletin included this:

The Burial at Thebes

Derek Walcott directs Dominique Le Gendre’s operatic adaptation of Seamus Heaney’s translation of Aeschylus’ play. Shakespeare’s Globe, London SE1 (020 7740 9919), Sat and Sun.

I have a vague feeling that Burial at Thebes is a a translation of Antigone, and an even vaguer notion that it was not Aeschylus who wrote Antigone.

But I hope it keeps fine for the production. I haven’t yet seen a production in The Globe, but if and when I do, I shall hope to see Shakespeare…

Golden sponge stick story writing competition

This one fell between the cracks when I got home from holiday – deep apologies to the Bath Royal High School Classics department for not mentioning it before now.

They are running a competition for potential authors who will pick up the torch from Caroline Lawrence, Steven Saylor and Lindsey Davis.

An email from Caroline Lawrence has jogged my memory, and she gives a helpful link to her Roman Mysteries Blog where the full rules can be found.

Your students have until November 21st to submit entries. This is a really good initiative, and I hope there are many entries.

Comic book on Hannibal

Instructions for finding the relevant comic book are on the home page.